While the 2020 MLB season seems to get further and further away, the MLB Draft is finally here. Without wanting to tip over too far into hyperbole, given where the Mariners are in their accelerated rebuild along with the draft position they hold, along with the depth of talent available and the extremely abbreviated nature of the draft, it’s fair to say this draft is a fulcrum for the future of the organization. After the draft concludes the Mariners will be competing with virtually every other team—including those with bigger brand presences, more recent track records of success, and not the longest playoff drought in major American pro sports—to sign desirable free agents for a fixed amount ($20,000). Drafting well in 2020 is more important than it has ever been in Jerry Dipoto’s tenure. Even if you aren’t a draft or prospects person, you should tune in to watch it unfold. Here’s how:
When: June 10-11
Round One begins at 4 PM PT on Wednesday, and Rounds Two through Five will be on Thursday at 2 PM PT. Comp Round A will also be aired on Wednesday. The Mariners have pick numbers 6 (Day One), 43, 64, 78, 107, and 137 (all Day Two).
How to watch: The draft will be shown on MLB Network and ESPN (Wednesday) and MLB Network and ESPN2 (Thursday). It will also be streamed live on MLB.com for you cord-cutters out there or people stuck at a desk.
The Mariners pick sixth on Day One, so you’ll want to be near a TV pretty close to the start of the show. There’s usually some introductory type stuff and Rob Manfred will natter on a bit, and the actual picks themselves usually take about five minutes between the reading of the names and the video package and commentary, so you have a little wiggle room if you can’t get to a TV right at four. That will be the Mariners’ lone pick on Day One, so you can go back to work after they pick if you really have to.
Thursday should have the same setup, but the time in between picks will shrink significantly. If you can’t commit to watching the whole show, make sure to tune in towards the beginning to see pick 43, which should come up pretty quickly, and if you can, keep watching to pick 64, where the Mariners have an extra pick in Comp Round B, and once you’ve done that you might as well hang in for 78. The Mariners will have two more picks after that, 107 and 137, and you might as well watch it, because it’s live baseball content that’s not on at three AM our time.
Who might the Mariners take?
Your guess is as good as ours! The Mariners are notoriously tight-lipped as an organization but Scott Hunter has noted the depth of college arms in this draft multiple times, so expect them to go pretty heavy on college pitchers, as they usually do. If New Mexico State 2B Nick Gonzales is indeed available at 6 there’s a good chance the Mariners take him; they’ve also been connected to hard-throwing RHP Max Meyer at Minnesota. There’s a slim chance Georgia righty Emerson Hancock might be available if things go a little sideways in picks 1-5.
You can listen to us discuss other potential players the Mariners might take with their Day Two picks on any of our latest They Might Be Mariners podcasts. We also have a pod episode with a full first-round mock draft (plus all the Mariners’ picks), and check out any other assorted draft goodness under the “2020 MLB Draft” tag at the top of this article for a crash course.
We’ll have an open thread on draft day, so come join us to talk about the draft!