Happy draft day, y’all! If you’ve been with us the entire way, welcome. If you’re just parachuting in, hello! Here’s our 2019 MLB Draft section where you can peruse our conference previews, mock draft, player profiles, and reviews of prior drafts.
Today the Mariners pick 20th, 59th, and 76th, as the first and second rounds (including the supplemental rounds) will be held. We’ve been looking forward to this for quite some time, and we’ll have reactions and analysis up for you this afternoon and evening. To streamline things, when Seattle makes a pick we will immediately drop that info in the article here, so feel free to refresh the page every so often once the draft gets underway at 4 PM PT. We will ALSO have separate articles for each pick today, which we will drop links to into this thread article.
With that in mind, let’s get drafty!
Draft Time: 4 PM PT
TV: MLB Network
Radio: I mean probably the At-Bat App but why?
Online: MLB.Com will stream MLB Network’s coverage live.
Update, 6:20 PM:
With their first round selection, the Mariners select RHP George Kirby from Elon University. Kirby is 6’4” with a fastball that sits 93-95 but can touch 97, and the best K-BB ratio in the country: he struck out 101 batters this year while walking only six. Here’s what Kate wrote ‘about Kirby in the “That’s MY Guy” draft preview:
The 6’4” righty plays for Elon University, so the quality of competition in the CAA (Colonial Athletic Association) might scare some teams off, but the Mariners have taken two players out of Elon in recent years (INF Nick Zammarelli in 2017 and INF Ryne Ogren in 2018), so it’s a program they’re comfortable with, at least on the position player side. Besides, velocity will play anywhere, as Kirby’s 93-97 mph fastball shows. But what makes Kirby especially appealing to the C-the-Z Mariners is his K/BB ratio: this year he has struck out 105 batters while walking just six, improving even further from a sophomore year in which he posted a 2.89 ERA with a 96:27 K/BB ratio. He has a solid four-pitch mix led by the fastball and complemented by a late-biting slider, a curve and a change that shows promise of being a plus pitch but needs development. Some scouts—Keith Law chief among them—wonder if Kirby really has the stuff to miss bats at the next level and see a potential reliever. He’s listed at 200lb but looks to me like he could add some muscle (and maybe even more velo) with a major-league strength and conditioning program, ‘and with already plus command would be a good candidate for the M’s lauded Gas Camp.
Update, 8:45 PM:
With their second round selection, the Mariners select 6’6” LHP Brandon Williamson from TCU. Here’s what Ben wrote up about Williamson in the Big 12 preview:
“Apparently 6’6” left-handed pitchers grown on trees down in Forth Worth, Texas because Brandon Williamson makes it two out of TCU that are expected to be drafted early in next month’s draft. Like Guenther, Williamson spent two years on the junior college circuit, working around some walk issues while consistently producing dominant performances at North Iowa Area Community College. Since choosing not to sign with the Brewers, who selected him in the 36th round last June, he’s posted rates of 10.0 K/9 and 4.4 BB/9 while running a 4.21 ERA and 1.50 WHIP through 62.0 innings spanning 13 starts.
His typically low-90’s heater can reach up to the 94-95mph range at times and joins a slider, curve, and change-up as a quartet of unpolished pitches that all have room to develop.”
Update, 9:10 PM:
With their competitive balance round B selection (traded from Cleveland), the Mariners select RHP Isaiah Campbell from Arkansas. I (Kate) am a huge fan of Campbell. Here’s what I wrote about him in the SEC preview:
“RHP Isaiah Campbell is a self-described “data nerd” who wanted to pursue a degree in biochemistry before realizing the difficulty of managing that major with a baseball schedule. He settled for criminal justice instead, with the hope of one day being a forensic scientist. Data nerds tend to do well in Seattle’s organization, especially those with 33:3 K:BB ratios who can throw mid-90s with a four-pitch mix.”