A Way Too Early Look at Who the Padres Could Draft with the 3rd Pick in Next Summer’s Amateur Draft:
The San Diego Padres are picking third in next summer’s annual baseball amateur draft.
I will discuss five names the Padres could be considering with the third overall pick. I have chosen five players with a slant towards ceiling, as that seems to be the direction A.J. Preller and company are presently leaning towards.
Some consideration is given for floor when the overall value could be too good to pass up. Over the next six months, there will be many risers and fallers on the potential draft board, but here are some upside names that the Padres may be weighing internally.
Jeren Kendall – OF Vanderbilt
Kendall has perhaps the best combination of floor and ceiling in the draft. Scouts believe he will have no issue sticking at CF and he gets compared to Jacoby Ellsbury due to his solid on base skills, average power, and plus speed. Kendall is a safe bet to be a top-3 pick in next June’s draft.
Hunter Greene – RHP/SS UCLA Commitment
Greene is the top two-way player available in the draft. Scouts are mixed as to whether he is better off pitching or staying in the field. He has a plus arm and could probably stick at shortstop or third base. As a pitcher, he features a plus fastball that sits mid 90s and can run up close to 100 at times. He also has a plus slider to go along with average changeup and command. He is probably the highest ceiling prospect in next summer’s draft. If he fails as a starter, a team selecting him could move him to the field or put him in the bullpen where his fastball/slider combo would do well. I like Tyson Ross as a comp.
J.B. Bukauskas – RHP North Carolina
J.B. will be one of the more controversial draftees from a war room standpoint. His repertoire is very similar to Greene’s, but some scouts don’t like his delivery and size. Major league war rooms will be debating injury future due to his delivery, and SP versus RP due to being only 6’0″ with not much projectibility. Drafting 3rd I’d stay away, but the ceiling is that of a front-of-the-rotation starter.
Royce Lewis – SS/OF UC Irvine Commitment
Lewis is another high ceiling kid that can play up the middle due to his plus speed. He’s a legit five tool prospect with average or better tools across the board. The Padres could consider Lewis at 3 if they believe he can stick at short.
Jayson Gonzalez – SS Vanderbilt Commitment
This is my dark horse pick if the Padres overdraft and save money for other picks later. You won’t find Gonzalez high on any list at the moment, but high school kids with plus raw power and a chance to stick at SS don’t grow on trees. Gonzalez would be a high ceiling developmental type pick. Lower floor than Lewis or Greene.
I think Greene, Kendall, and Lewis will be the guys given the most consideration.