The draft is mere minutes away and you are unprepared! Alright, it is actually some number of minutes away, but in the scheme of things, it is not a large number. Since we probably will not be doing a whole of pre-draft coverage, I decided to whip up a handy dandy cheat sheet guide to some, hopefully most, of the Mariners' likely draft targets. This way, once the pick is actually announced you can flip out in a semi-informed manner instead of your usual ranting and raving. Thanks to Jay (JY) for some of the additional information and spelling corrections.
ALBERT ALMORA, CF, High School
Why be excited: Everybody loves his defense and his bat is mature for a high schooler. If Buxton and Zunino go 1-2, then Almora might be the best bat remaining.
Why freak the flip out: He's not as talented as other available hitters; might be a bit of a reach at third overall.
MARK APPEL, RHP, College
Why be excited: Appel is an advanced starter who can touch the high-90s with his fastball. He's been around the very top of the draft boards all season. He might be the best pitcher available in the draft.
Why freak the flip out: More pitching?! BURN THE TREE! Seriously though, Appel is not a slam dunk. His breaking ball needs work and for someone with his fastball and stuff, he's not as dominating as you'd expect. Some attribute that to delivery that doesn't hide the ball well.
BYRON BUXTON, CF, High School
Why be excited: Cementing himself as the top talent in the draft, Buxton is a beast with all the tools at his disposal plus with already developed arm strength (can hit the mid-90s) and foot speed. He's really lacking power numbers right now, but that might be due to opposing coaches pitching around him and scouts do project power in Buxton's future.
Why freak the flip out: Could be a ways off. He's played against weak competition in school. The aforementioned dearth of home runs so far. You're a negative person who simply has to make other people feel worse.
CARLOS CORREA, SS, High School
Why be excited: Carlos is young (17) and has great tools. There are reports that suggest he'll grow into a power bat with solid contact skills. Ranks at or above where Francisco Lindor was last year.
Why freak the flip out: Most reports don't put faith in Correa staying at short stop, pegging him for third base in the future. He's unlikely to draw a lot of walks with such high-contact skills. He'll probably take a while to move through the system.
MAX FRIED, LHP, High School
Why be excited: Regarded as the best southpaw in the draft. Fried has a dynamite curve and already sits in the low-90s with his fastball.
Why freak the flip out: High school pitcher alert! High school pitcher alert! The Mariners might be reaching a bit to nab him at three.
KEVIN GAUSMAN, RHP, College
Why be excited: Gausman has a good, high-90s, fastball and a solid change up already.
Why flip the freak out: His breaking pitches are regarded as "inconsistent" and like Appel, he hasn't flat out dominated like you might want in order to justify passing on higher potential elsewhere.
LUCAS GIOLITO, RHP, High School
Why be excited: Lucas was in the mix for first overall on people's early draft boards. He's big in stature, has good zip on his fastball and an off speed pitch that's not just for show. Scouts like his delivery.
Why freak the flip out: He's missed most of the season with an elbow injury. It's said to be of a minor concern, but any arm injury in a high school pitcher is a big concern for me. He has a college commitment, so if he slips too far he may go that route. Probably not the case should the Mariners take him third.
ANDREW HEANEY, LHP, College
Why be excited: Heaney is by far the best collegiate southpaw in the draft. He possesses good command, already works with three pitches.
Why freak the flip out: He's a reach at three. He's not regarded as overpowering by anyone.
DEVEN MARRERO, SS, College
Why be excited: Everyone thinks he sticks at short, with some saying that Deven will be a plus defender there. Comparisons to Omar Vizquel (with the glove) have been made. Probably the best college bat behind Zunino.
Why freak the flip out: Marrero doesn't have a lot of power and has really struggled at the plate this season.
MICHAEL WACHA, RHP, College (just for you, Jay)
Why be excited: He has a great change up! He... uh... he has a great change up!
Why freak the flip out: Low ceiling, "safe pick", et cetera.
KYLE ZIMMER, RHP, College
Why be excited: He can sit in the mid-90s with his fastball. He has a developing curveball and some feel for a change up already. He used to be a position player so he has less mileage on his arm. Well regarded.
Why freak the flip out: Some minor injury questions with his hamstring of late, that's about it.
MIKE ZUNINO, C, College
Why be excited: Zunino is the best college bat in the draft. I haven't read much that is suspicious of his ability to catch in the future. He doesn't really have a weakness.
Why freak the flip out: Zunino started out poorly this season in conference play, though he picked it up later. He also lacks a standout tool.