Phillies 2014 MLB Draft preview

As we know, baseball has not been great lately here in Philadelphia. Actually, baseball has been horrendous in Philadelphia for the past few seasons; however, as poor as the Phillies look right now we have something to be hopeful for.

The 2014 MLB Draft is set to take place starting tomorrow June 5th to June 7th. The live draft coverage begins at 7pm on MLB Network, if you’re a baseball nerd (like me) tune in at 6pm for the pre-draft show to get all the latest updates.

With the 7th pick, the Phillies hold their first top ten pick since they selected Gavin Floyd 4th overall in the 2001 MLB Draft.

Yeah, I hear ya..

After low selections and poor choices over the past decade the team is looking to draft a player who can contribute rather quickly. They know they have an older team, so they would love to draft a kid who can rapidly mature and fit in fast. But shit, this past week of baseball may have just changed the minds’ of the people who work in the front office.

It is said that the Phillies would be leaning towards drafting a player in college, but what they need to do is draft a player who can develop into a core name for the club. Whether HS or college, they need to draft a stable piece and think about the future. Ruben and the front office have already put enough band aides on this current team.

With that being said, the top ten draft prospects the Phillies should consider:

1.) Brady Aiken LHP, Cathedral Catholic HS (Cali) – At 6’4 210lbs Aiken is the highest rated prospect and a force on the mound. He throws a mid 90s fastball and has a filthy breaking pitch. He holds the highest ceiling of becoming the future ace of a staff. Will likely go first overall.

2.) Carlos Rodon, LHP, North Carolina State – The 6’2 211lb lefty was previously drafted out of HS in 2011 by the Brewers in the 16th round. Won 2013 USA Baseball Player of the Year, and 2012 ACC pitcher of the year at NC State. Top three pick, possibly first overall.

3.) Tyler Kolek, RHP, Shepherd HS (Texas) – “Tyler Kolek is a 6-foot-5 right-hander who can throw his fastball in the upper-90s with a fairly easy and effortless delivery. He combines it with a power curve that has the potential to be a strikeout pitch. His size and arm strength alone is enough to make him a very hot commodity.” (MLB.com)

4.) Michael Conforto, OF, Oregon State – The 6’1 left handed hitting outfielder walks more than he strikes out, a lot more than he strikes out. According to ESPNChicago.com, “Conforto played three seasons at Oregon State and each year his strikeout-to-walk ratio improved while hitting 31 home runs in 659 at-bats. He batted .345 with seven home runs and 55 RBIs with a .504 on-base percentage in 2014.” Risky pick, but holds great reward.

5.) Nick Gordon, SS, Olympia HS (Fla.) – Son of former Phillie Tom “Flash” Gordon, and brother of dodgers 2B/SS Dee Gordon. Gordon has gained a lot of interests as of late and could potentially go top 5. The Phillies also drafted SS J.P. Crawford last year with the 16th pick. Crawford has been tearing up Lakewood, but the Phillies could still take Gordon if he falls on their laps.

6.) Alex Jackson, C/OF, Rancho Bernardo HS (Cali) – At 6’2 215lb, Jackson is said to have the best bat in this year’s draft. He has the power to potentially bat in the middle of a clubs future lineup. With his position up in the air, he will have to learn a new position, and Jackson will have time in the minor leagues to do so. Can’t miss prospect.

7.) Aaron Nola, RHP, Louisiana State – The LSU right-handed pitcher stands at 6’1 195lb. He was a 2013 First Team All-American, 2013 SEC Pitcher of the Year, and a finalist for the 2013 National Pitcher of the Year. Mid 90s fastball with a consistent change-up.

8.) Kyle Freeland, LHP, Evansville – The 6’4 190lb lefty was already chosen before by Philadelphia in the 35th round in 2011. According to Chicagonow.com, “Control may be Freeland’s best tool, which Baseball America calls “plus-plus” and his command is not too far behind either. Freeland features two potential plus pitches in his fastball and slider. The fastball features great sink and should generate a lot of ground balls. He can run the fastball up to 96 when needed, but typically sits low 90’s and it can be a strikeout pitch for him.”

9.) Trea Turner, SS, North Carolina State – the biggest problem with the 6’1 shortstop is his bat and whether or not it can be consistent on the Major league level. The kid can pick it at short and has decent speed; he stole 113 bags in three years at NC State.

10.) Jeff Hoffman, RHP, East Carolina – An interesting player but may be too risky with the 7th pick. Hoffman was a potential first pick before getting hurt. He has to undergo Tommy John surgery and will miss the 2015 season, but Hoffman has the potential to be the ace of a staff. He can turn a team around, but again the injury is a huge scare. Keep an eye on him to see where he lands.

Nobody knows what the Phillies front office is thinking, hopefully they’re only thinking about the future. We need a bright baseball future to have something to look forward too in this city. The best decade of baseball in this town is due to go through a rebuilding phase sooner rather than later. The Phillies need to rebuild their farm system, and they need to prove that they know how to make good decisions. The only scare for me is the GM making those decisions.

Let us pray.

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