The Braves took OF Jesse Franklin in the third round on Thursday. Here is a write-up from Matt Powers on what the Michigan product brings:
One of the guys most hurt by the shutdown in college had to be Jesse Franklin, who has seen his stock drop without setting foot on the field. Just before the season started it came out that he was going to miss the first part of the season with a broken collarbone from a skiing accident. Franklin has shown both some ability to hit for average and some ability to hit for power, but he hasn’t shown the ability to do both at the same time. He could have plus left handed power, but it may take some tweaks to his approach to bring that out with the ability to hit for average. Franklin is an above average runner and will get a chance to stick in center, but if he can’t he would be limited to left as his arm is fringy. Already 21 and turning 22 later this year, Franklin can’t really take a chance on returning to school to show more with the bat.
Matt breaks down fourth round pick Spencer Strider, a Clemson product:
Strider was an elite recruit out of Tennessee who passed up the draft out of high school to go to Clemson. He hasn’t seen a ton of work there because of TJ surgery, but he has a live arm despite a frame that isn’t very large. A slightly undersized right hander, Strider is known for a mid 90s fastball and a promising slider, which has the potential to become a plus pitch for him with refinement. He is definitely a player hurt by the lack of a season this year, as a strong season would have really boosted his stock back to what it was pre-injury.
Guess who covered this write-up, too. Two things: Elder is an intriguing arm and Matt Powers is a freak when it comes to covering draft prospects.
Bryce Elder is a kid with an interesting story. Baseball wasn’t his top sport until late in his high school career and he was a late addition to the Texas recruiting class in 2017. Things have worked out well for him since then, as he has gone on to become the ace for one of the top programs in the country. Elder isn’t a pitcher with overpowering stuff, in fact he only has one true plus pitch in his slider. His above average curve is his second best pitch. His fastball is more of a low 90’s pitch that gets ground balls than it is a swing and miss offering. He also has a solid average change. Elder is a solid average command guy with plenty of pitchability, enhancing the stuff. His upside is fairly limited since he doesn’t have much projection remaining, but he is a strong candidate to be a #4 starter for a big league team. There is also a chance he could have a little more yet to come since he got a bit of a late start focusing solely on baseball. I normally prefer upside to high floor, but Elder is just a kid who competes at a high level and knows how to work a hitter.
The Cubs drafted a kid who can throw 105. Check out the profile on Luke Little.
According to MLB Pipeline’s scouting report on the 19-year-old Little — selected out of San Jacinto College in Texas — the lefty tends to sit in the 93-96 mph range in his longer outings. But he can top 100 mph in shorter stints, and he boasted the “highest maximum velocity” of any lefty prospect in the 2020 Draft class.
The Tigers added another impact bat to their draft class on Thursday, taking catcher Dillon Dingler in the second round. Many considered Dingler a candidate to go in the first round, so him falling to 38. Detroit followed this pick with the selection of outfielder Daniel Cabrera from LSU in the Comp B Round to strengthen an already impressive draft class.