The Miami Marlins have the 12th pick in the 2015 MLB First-Year Player Draft, which begins on Monday, June 8. Last night, Stan Meek was on the Marlins' TV broadcast with Rich Waltz and Tommy Hutton, and the group briefly discussed strategies and thoughts during the draft process. Let's listen in to some of what Meek had to say about Miami's draft approach.
On approaching the 12th pick in the first round:
Well, we kind of put together a list together in the first round of how we would take and then we know, with picking 12th, there's probably six or seven guys that are definitely going to be gone. So we just try to look at it and see how it's going to go from there, and probably there's five or six guys we think will have a chance to fit, and you just have to have them in order so when the time comes, you pick them.
That obviously does not give much away in terms of a concrete strategy, nor should it. Miami has a list of five names around its pick region that it thinks will be available and a "fit" in the organization, and it knows about six or seven guys will simply not be available.
|1||Brendan Rogers||Brendan Rogers|
|2||Kevin Newman||Dansby Swanson|
|3||Dansby Swanson||Carson Fulmer|
|4||Alex Bregman||Alex Bregman|
|5||Dillon Tate||Dillon Tate|
|6||Kolby Allard||Daz Cameron|
|7||Ian Happ||Kyle Tucker|
A couple of other names may be considered "consensus" players, but it seems pretty evident that the shortstop trio of Rogers, Swanson, and Breman along with right-hander Dillon Tate are almost assuredly within the top ten selections. A number of names may be mixed in, but there does not seem to be as strong a consensus, at least among these two lists. Looking at the latest mock drafts as compiled by DC Pro Sports Report, Daz Cameron, Tyler Jay, and Kyle Tucker appear often among the top five to seven picks along with Carson Fulmer.
Some combination of those names are unlikely to be available for Miami heading into their pick, but they need a set of five or six names to consider. Multiple respectable mock drafts thus far have Miami taking one of the high-caliber outfielders, with the most common name thus far being Trenton Clark, the Richland, TX outfielder, with Kyle Tucker and Garrett Whitley mentioned as well.
On how well the Marlins have done in recent drafts:
Well, I like what we've done. We tried to stay athletic, tried to stay young. You'd rather have a college guy if his ability matches up with the high school guy. We've taken a lot of high school guys, [owner Jeffrey Loria] and [president of baseball operations Michael Hill] have let us do that, which is a little further away, but you got a lot of upside there.
This comment surprised me, as our research has shown that the Marlins usually go with high schoolers in the first round historically. The Fish turned to a high school pitcher seven times in 16 draft picks (including sandwich picks) from 2004 to 2013, and they turned to one again last season when provided the option between the high-upside Texas flamethrower Tyler Kolek or the dominant college lefty Carlos Rodon. Going high school over college is a Marlins tradition, especially with players from the midwest and Texas, which are stomping grounds for Meek and other Marlins scouts.
If you want to talk high school athletes, or in particular pitchers, near the Marlins' 12th selection, you could point to names like Donny Everett, Mike Nikorak, or even last year's first pick, Brady Aiken. Expand that to just high schoolers and you could see guys like Clark, Tyler Stephenson (from Georgia), or Whitley.
Expect some more draft coverage this week and next here at Fish Stripes!