Two weeks ago, Fish Stripes looked at ten players the Marlins might draft with the sixth overall pick. Here are five more names worth familiarizing yourself with.
Braden Shipley, RHP
Height: 6'3" Weight: 190 lbs.
Statistics: 3.02 ERA, 92.1 IP, 84 SO, 31 BB
As Sean Manaea has faltered this spring, teams looking for impact pitching have found excellent alternatives. Braden Shipley offers a solid mid-90s fastball that touches 98 miles per hour, a plus change-up, and outstanding mound presence. His curve-ball could turn into an average pitch with some work. If the Marlins try to save some money in the first round, Shipley could be a good budget pick.
Jonathan Gray, RHP
Height: 6'4" Weight: 240 lbs.
Statistics: 1.43 ERA, 94.2 IP,112 SO, 19 BB
Jonathan Gray has risen from relative obscurity to become one of the top names in the draft. Mark Appel and Gray have separated themselves from the rest of their college pitching class, and appear likely to be gone with the first and second picks. In fact, there is a strong argument to be made that Gray is the premier talent in the draft. He possesses the best fastball of any draft-eligible player, delivering a mid-to-high-90s heater that occasionally touches triple digits, and features strong movement. His slider and change-up are both excellent strikeout pitches.
If Gray has one blemish, it's that he isn't as athletic as some of the other available pitchers. Should Gray fall to the Marlins for some unexpected reason, they would be foolish to not take him. He has all the trademarks of a front-line starter in the major leagues.
Colin Moran, 3B
School: North Carolina
Height: 6'3" Weight: 210 lbs.
Statistics: 242 PA, .385/.516/.646, 9 2B, 1 3B, 13 HR
Colin Moran currently sits behind San Diego's Kris Bryant as the top college hitter in the draft. Moran's disciplined approach and smooth left-handed swing make for an attractive offensive package. His power does not rate as highly as his plus-plus hit tool, but he has the potential to hit plenty of home runs. His defensive skill-set is robust as well, including reliable hands, good arm strength, and decent range at the hot corner. Moran also hit .314/.379/.503 in the summer Cape Code League last year. Many teams pay close attention to Cape Cod performance due to the league's high level of competition and use of wooden bats.
J.P. Crawford, SS
School: Lakewood HS
Height: 6'1" Weight: 180 lbs.
Statistics: 106 PA, .448/.538/.667, 9 2B, 2 3B, 2 HR
John Paul Crawford profiles as the top middle infield prospect in this year's draft. All too often, the best hitting prep shortstops move off the position in professional ball, but Crawford appears a likely candidate to stay at shortstop. He's an athletic kid, with good range, and above-average speed on the base-paths. Crawford's bat looks fine, and could become even better with mechanical tweaks and polish. His bat speed is already impressive, but his swing can get long, making him prone to swinging and missing. He doesn't project to hit many home runs either, though he should develop solid gap power. I see a quality up-the-middle talent in Crawford, even if none of his particular tools rate as spectacular.
Reese McGuire, C
School: Kentwood HS
Height: 6'1" Weight: 190 lbs.
Statistics: 94 PA, .417/.543/.778, 11 2B, 3 3B, 3 HR
Reese McGuire is the most prominent member of a very deep class of high school catchers this year. McGuire can also play third base and the outfield, but teams will likely want to maximize his value by having him catch. He has received a lot of praise for his natural baseball instincts and in-game effort. He's athletic for a catcher, demonstrating good pitch receiving and blocking skills, and wielding a strong arm. He has plus bat speed, and more power could develop as his body fills out. If McGuire's tools coalesce into a polished product, he is an excellent defender and above-average hitter at the major league level. In other words, an extremely valuable player.