White Sox Mock Draft Roundup: Right-handed pitchers still prominent

It had been a few weeks since our inaugural White Sox mock draft roundup for the 2021 MLB draft season, but generally speaking, I try to follow the Rule of Threes. With Baseball America releasing its fourth mock draft a month and a half in advance of the MLB draft, that gave us the a quorum, which includes the first from ESPN this year.

The latest cluster yields three new names for the White Sox at No. 22. Include the two from our first look at the projections, and four of five are right-handed pitchers.

Baseball America (May 24)

  • White Sox select: Chase Petty, RHP, Mainland Regional HS, Linwood, N.J.
  • Previous mock: Andrew Painter, RHP, Calvary Christian HS, Fort Lauderdale, Fla.

Carlos Collazo’s view: “The White Sox have gone after a few flamethrowers in recent drafts (Garrett Crochet, Jared Kelley) and if they wanted to chase velocity once again, Petty is the guy. He has the hardest fastball in the prep class and has shown glimpses of a plus slider as well, but there’s effort to his operation and spotty control at times. He figures to be a polarizing prospect for teams, but the sense around the industry seems to be that he’ll find a spot in the back of the first. Haughton (La.) High shortstop Peyton Stovall might be a target here as well.”

Petty is a polarizing prospect because he throws that hard from a 6-foot, 185-pound frame. He’s a Florida commit who is either ranked No. 25 (Baseball America, MLB Pipeline) or No. 32 on (Keith Law, Kiley McDaniel). As for the previous pick, Painter is already off the board at No. 20, so Petty if the third prep arm taken. What jumps out to me is Vanderbilt’s Kumar Rocker, at one point seen as a candidate for 1-1, falling to the Royals at No. 7.

MLB.com (May 19)

  • White Sox select: Adrian Del Castillo, C, Miami
  • Previous mock: Sam Bachman, RHP, Miami (Ohio)

Jonathan Mayo’s view: “Once thought to be one of the top college bats in the class, he struggled early, but perhaps last weekend (4-for-11, 4 RBIs) is a sign of him heating up, though the lack of power and fringy defense makes it hard to place him.”

The White Sox drafted Del Castillo back in the 36th round in 2018, two years after selecting a catcher from the Hurricanes program who wasn’t a lock to stick behind home plate, so there’s a history here. Zack Collins is still catching despite being one of the league’s worst receivers, so you couldn’t necessarily write off Del Castillo from doing the same if the White Sox drafted him for his switch-hitting bat, which is off to a slow start this season. He was considered a top-five talent by some before the season, but has slid to the middle/back half of the first round on the various boards.

ESPN (May 11)

  • White Sox select: Jaden Hill, RHP, LSU

Kiley McDaniel’s view: “Hill was a top-10 pick entering the year despite a short track record on the mound and some injuries. He was up-and-down with flashes of greatness this spring, then went down with Tommy John surgery. The lack of track record and polish puts him next to advanced high school pitchers, but the surgery timeline pushes Hill behind the top couple of prep arms. He also may land in the comp or early second round where a team can spread savings from their first pick, but I’d expect a bonus in line with the 15th to 25th overall pick (i.e. $3-4 million).”

Hill ranked in BA’s top 10 before the Tommy John surgery, which he underwent in April. Due to previous injuries, his previous role in relief and the pandemic, his body of work with the Tigers has been limited to 51⅓ innings, so he hasn’t been able to show whether his power stuff can hold up start after start. For some context, the White Sox drafted Garrett Crochet under similarly mysterious circumstances regarding his newfound power, but Crochet had thrown 132 innings for Tennessee.

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Jim Margalus

Writing about the White Sox for a 16th season, first here, then at South Side Sox, and now here again. Let’s talk curling.

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knoxfire30

Jaden Hill and Gunnar Hoglund are going to be interesting for teams in the back end of the first round (sox obvisouly included)… they are probably good gambles especially if you can get them for a chunk under slot then use that extra draft pool money on an upside prep in round two. Arm injuries just dont scare teams away that much any more and really given the track records of a lot of guys they shouldnt.

jhomeslice

I know the philosophy is usually to take the best player available regardless of position, but it seems to me that the Sox greatest need is clearly outfield help, and that their need might be great enough for them to abandon that usual draft philosophy. 5 of the Sox top 7 prospects are right handed pitchers according to MLB.com rankings. Baseball drafts are much more of a crapshoot than other sports such that it might work out better for them to take a chance on an outfielder they liked anyway, Trout being a 20th-something pick for a nice example. In one mock draft I saw, 3 of the next 5 picks after the Sox were outfielders, implying there is not a chasm of difference in talent/success probability. Assuming they liked any of them I hope they take one instead of a pitcher, personally. I know Cespedes will get a chance at AA hopefully soon, and assuming Oscar Colas is heading to the Sox he will be another outfield candidate. I just don’t like their other minor league outfielders much at all. Hoping for much from Adolfo or Rutherford is probably wishful thinking at best, or they would be ranked in the top 100 MLB prospects, or top 5 within the Sox now very low ranked system.

Last edited 11 months ago by jhomeslice
Trooper Galactus

Nobody they could draft as outfield help would be ready to help them any time soon in any foreseeable scenario, barring one of the biggest draft coups of all time. The idea is not just to get a potentially good major league player, it’s to add value to your system. If it winds up being value superfluous to your success, then it can be traded.

soxygen

I’d like to see them draft someone with upside who is appropriate for their draft position, and then try to find a 1st round talent in the 2nd round and be creative with their pool for the 3rd-5th.

What I don’t want is for them to draft a DH or a college reliever in the 1st. Someone who can start or play an up the middle position, please!

Bless you for tracking the prospects and mock drafts!

Last edited 11 months ago by soxygen
Foulkelore

I saw “mock” in the article title and was hoping this was where we could go to mock the New Era local market hats. Darn, but good draft info.

Foulkelore

Yes, Victory Auto Wreckers! That’s a million times better.

burning-phoneix

Would love the Sox to go for Joe Mack. A catcher who can actually catch.