Baseball America offers some insight into who the Braves are targeting in their latest mock draft

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The Braves have been notably tough to predict in the MLB Draft under Alex Anthopoulos, which can happen when you’re picking so late. Baseball America talked about what the Braves might be thinking in their Mock Draft 3.0.

24. Braves — George Lombard Jr., SS, Gulliver Prep HS, Miami

I’ve been hearing the Braves linked with a number of high school hitting profiles recently, and Lombard Jr. is one of them that seems to come up a good bit. They could also be in on Walker Martin if he’s still available. Both these profiles make some sense for an Atlanta system that continues to pump out big league pitchers, but could use an infusion of high-upside hitting talent.

This makes a lot of sense. As I’ve talked about in previous mock drafts, the Braves used to focus on college players who could help the big league club sooner rather than later. Last year, we saw them pivot and attempt to fill the lower levels of the minors with high-upside high school players. The logic is: why draft a guy who will be ready in two years when you probably don’t need him when a high-upside player can develop and potentially provide more trade value? I think the Braves will  have a similar draft strategy as 2022 — high-upside high school players with a few college relief arms mixed in for bullpen help.

The Braves have drafted pretty well over the past few years, and have been exceptional at times. Their farm system is pretty barren; so it would be a big boost if they nail the 2023 draft.

Photographer: David J. Griffin/Icon Sportswire

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