The Braves were busy on Day 1, selecting four pitchers — three of them coming from the high school ranks. On Day 2, Atlanta kicked things off with three college bats:
Round 3, Pick 96: C Drake Baldwin — Missouri State
Baldwin’s best tool is his offense, and he’s a good athlete behind the plate. Baldwin was a top-notch hockey player in Wisconsin, so there’s some athletic upside there to evolve into a plus defender. He notched a 21-game hit streak in 2022, batting .298 with four home runs. The Braves need a lot of help at catcher; it may be their thinnest position in the minors.
Round 4, Pick 125: 3B David McCabe — UNC Charlotte
McCabe is a switch-hitting power hitter that may transition to first base. He posted a 1.297 OPS in 2022 and a 1.135 OPS in 2021. At 6’4 and 230 pounds, there’s a lot of upside there as a power bat.
Round 5, Pick 155: 3B Ignacio Alvarez — Riverside City College (CA)
Not a ton of scouting reports out on Alvarez, but the Braves must see something with this kid. He slashed .370/.494/.582 and had 25 extra base hits in 48 games. He’s barely 19, so he’s a long-term project for the Braves to work with in the lower levels of the minors. There’s some athletic and defensive upside to develop as well.
One of the better Juco Bats in So Cal… physical kid, with power…. https://t.co/YzPc6lqTmn https://t.co/Fd8FSfJNGq
— Steve Fiorindo (@SoCalSteve9) July 18, 2022
Round 6, Pick 185: RHP Seth Keller — Hanover HS (VA)
The 2021-2022 Gatorade High School Player of the Year in Virginia, Keller is an Old Dominion commit. He struck out 16 batters in the National High School invitational, which really helped his draft stock. He’s a smaller pitcher, but he has a good three-pitch mix for his age. Keller has a quick delivery with projection for more velocity as he grows into his body.
Seth Keller set the @USABaseball NHSI strikeout record this spring with 16 whiffs. Smaller high school pitcher but is in the low 90s and up to 95. I like the split-change with 1,100-1,200 rpm spin.#MLBDraft #Braves
— Carlos Collazo (@CarlosACollazo) July 18, 2022
Later round guy I really liked is Hanover HS (VA) RHP/3B Seth Keller. Some violence to delivery but 7 IP, 3 H, 1 R, 1 BB, 16 K last night in extra inning win. Good swing/athlete and all three pitches (91-94 t95, sweepy slider, split) flash above. Say what you want but this works. pic.twitter.com/IDQNyKFICz
— Kiley McDaniel (@kileymcd) April 8, 2022
Round 7, Pick 215: RHP Adam Maier — Oregon
Maier is another Canadian; he’s a raw player but pitched well in the Cape Cod League. Coming off of injury, he’s a good athlete with a really good spin rate. He only notched 15.2 innings at Oregon, so the Braves must see a lot of projectability here. There seems to be a ton of upside with his offspeed offerings:
Wow. The #Braves grab Oregon RHP Adam Maier. Might be a tough sign. Just had UCL stabilization surgery. Most expected him back at school. Will be an over-slot. Had Top-3 round buzz in spring. Can really spin it.
— Joe Doyle (@JoeDoyleMiLB) July 18, 2022
Here's a minute of arguably the best breaking ball in the 2022 draft (yes, I'm that confident a year out lol)
Adam Maier's SL is one of the best I've seen at the amateur level. Ridiculously high spin/high spin eff combo w/ good velocity for the sweep
45% SL CSW on the Cape pic.twitter.com/XnVTSplEvW
— Nathaniel Plotts (@nplotts5) August 24, 2021
Round 8, Pick 245: RHP Jason Franks — Cal Poly San Luis Obispo (CA)
Franks actually played club baseball before making his college team, so there isn’t much information on the fifth-year Senior.
Clean bottom of the 9th for Cal Poly closer Jason Franks with two punch outs to secure the comeback win for the Mustangs. All fastballs, running it up to 94. Cal Poly put up a 4 spot in top 9 and ended up w/ 4-3 victory. @PGCollegeball @PG_Scouting pic.twitter.com/SZKNEFDpvS
— Perfect Game California (@California_PG) April 16, 2022
Round 9, Pick 275: 2B Cory Acton — Georgia
Finally, someone I’m familiar with. The Florida transfer posted a .796 OPS in 2022, and he profiles as a utility guy if he ever reaches his potential in the majors. Plays very hard.
#NCAABaseball Plays of the Week ⚾️
2️⃣ | @GatorsBB second baseman Cory Acton makes a diving catch to get the first out of the fifth inning. ✈️ pic.twitter.com/tfiZoW29s7
— NCAA Baseball (@NCAABaseball) May 19, 2021
Round 10, Pick 305: C Andrew Keck — Southeast Missouri State
2021’s third-round pick, Dylan Dodd, also came from Missouri State. Interestingly enough, Keck stole 17 bases as a catcher. He has great power but needs some work defensively behind the plate.
Andrew Keck nails the runner attempting to steal 2nd to end the inning. CCP gets a run across but trails 4-1 T4 pic.twitter.com/GAYSmEnB1w
— GriffinsTV (@GriffinsTV_Live) May 1, 2018
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