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Mock Draft Roundup: Pac-12 in the MLB

Spencer Torkelson goes No. 1, twice

NCAA BASEBALL: JUN 01 Div 1 Championship Baton Rouge Regional - Arizona State v Stony Brook Photo by John Korduner/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

The Pac-12 should heavily dominate the next MLB Draft, later this summer, and Arizona State’s Spencer Torkelson should hear his name called, early.

Torkelson has been mocked first overall a slew of times this offseason and as the mock drafts continually come in, we’re rounding up a few of the top ones across the country.

Recently, Baseball America and The Athletic put out mock drafts for the first round of the 2020 MLB Draft, and Torkelson was selected first overall in both. Here’s what they had to say about the Arizona State first baseman.

The Athletic, author: Keith Law

1. Detroit Tigers: Spencer Torkelson, 1B, Arizona State

I don’t think this is a lock at all — Torkelson is the most famous player in the class, but not a Stephen Strasburg/Bryce Harper type who is clearly a level above anyone else in the draft. He’s also a right-handed hitting college first baseman; no college first baseman has ever gone 1-1, and no right-handed-hitting college outfielders have gone 1-1. The closest comparison might be Pat Burrell, a third baseman at the University of Miami who went first overall and immediately moved to first base and the outfield upon signing. Torkelson might be the safest player in the class, however, and the Tigers, picking first, have a system that is far stronger in pitching than in position players.

Baseball America, author: Carlos Collazo

1. Detroit Tigers: Spencer Torkelson, 1B, Arizona State

Either Spencer Torkelson or Austin Martin have been mocked in the 1-2 spots throughout our process, and those two names continue to be mentioned here. With continued questions about Martin’s defensive position, Torkelson has been gaining steam and he has the best combination of hitting ability and power in the class. Perhaps it’s as simple as that for Detroit. With this pick, Torkelson would be the first college first baseman to go 1-1, though plenty of scouts in the industry will point to Pat Burrell (1998) as a player who was likely to move there.

Torkelson is very likely to be the first overall pick and found his way to the first overall selection in ESPN’s mock draft just a week ago as well.

Fellow Pac-12 players on the mock draft lists are sparse but UCLA’s Garrett Mitchell should definitely hear his name called earlier than later. Mitchell went 10th overall to the Los Angeles Angels in Baseball America’s mock and 21st to the St. Louis Cardinals in The Athletic’s.

10. Los Angeles Angels: Garrett Mitchell, OF, UCLA

Mitchell has long been one of the more polarizing players in the class. Lately his name has been mentioned more in the 7-12 range than the top six range that we’ve had him going in previously. That could be a function of teams talking through his diabetes, or simply because of his riskier offensive profile. We have him going to a team here who has previously taken a shot on a tooled up outfielder with some bat questions and looked great for it.

21. St. Louis Cardinals: Garrett Mitchell, OF, UCLA

Mitchell is an 80 runner and sure centerfielder, but teams are scared off by multiple factors, from questions about whether his swing will work with wood to health concerns given his diabetes. He reminds me a bit of Drew Stubbs, who wasn’t exactly the same kind of player — more power, a bit less speed, a slightly better defender at the same age — but went in the top ten picks in 2006.

There you have it — the Pac-12 roundup in the latest run of mock drafts.

We’ll stay up on this as they keep coming in!