SF Giants: What to look for on Day 2 of the MLB draft

Let's look at who the SF Giants might take on Day 2 of the MLB draft

The San Francisco Giants got their draft started Wednesday, selecting catcher Patrick Bailey out of NC State. He immediately ranks as the ninth best prospect in the Giants system and you can read a full scouting report on him here.

The bulk of the Giants' work is left for today. In round 2-5 the Giants have six picks, one in each round alongside a pair of compensation picks for the loss of lefthanded pitchers Madison Bumgarner and Will Smith in free agency.

A number of big names are still on the board and I'll take a deeper dive into some of my favorites and also get into how likely they are to end up in the Giants organization. Still, there tend to be a few primary types of players to watch.

The top talent available will primarily lean towards high school players who were unable to find an agreement on Day 1. Most of them are destined for college at this point, but some will agree to take well-above slot signing bonuses to turn pro. It's hard to know at this point who those guys will be, but a few names seem more likely than others.

Otherwise, after Round 2 expect a strange mix of team's sticking to big boards drafting the best available prospects and "reaching" on players who may not be ranked as highly, but have a solid set of tools and have bonus demands that fit the team's budget.

Here are some of my favorite names to watch today:

SF Giants MLB Draft Day 2 targets

The Over-Slot Fallers: Jarred Kelley, Cole Wilcox, J.T. Ginn

Expect them to go quickly, otherwise, don't be shocked if they don't get selected at all. Kelley is a classic example of a power first-round talent that falls through a combination of bad luck and high bonus demands.

A Refugio, Texas native, Kelley has a powerful fastball that can up into the high 90s and touch 99 mph. He's old for a high school senior and has already filled out his 6'3'' frame pretty well, but his stuff has already shown enough to dream on. His delivery is very well put together and is able to control his fastball very well. It pairs with a changeup that flashes above-average and a breaking ball that needs further development, but I tend to have more faith in players to develop breaking stuff than a changeup.

Wilcox was one of the top high school prospects a couple of years ago and old for his class, Wilcox is a draft-eligible sophomore. Now listed at 6-foot-5, 232 pounds, Wilcox has put on substantial bulk that has helped him hold his high-90s velocity later into appearances. He pairs it with a potential plus slider and a changeup that needs more development but also flashes above-average. Wilcox would not have been a huge surprise with the Giants 13th selection. In fact, Roger Munter, Brian Recca, and I selected Wilcox at 13 in a mock draft for Prospects Live a couple of months ago.

Both Wilcox and Kelley would be tremendous steals for the Giants today. Either one would have made some level of sense with their first-round selection, but it's hard to know how much both players require them from foregoing the pros. Both were more late-first round options, which suggests a $2.5MM signing bonus should be enough to get it done, which would only require the Giants to cut about $650,000 below-slot elsewhere.

Still, it's hard to see either of them lasting too long on Day 2 and if they are signable, one would expect teams like the Orioles or Marlins both would be premium options to take either one before the Giants given they both cut significant costs yesterday.

At the beginning of the spring, Ginn was the best prospect of this group and seemed primed to be a top 10, maybe even top five, selection. Ginn is old for his class and so he's a draft-eligible sophomore, but put off upperclassmen level production last season in his first collegiate season. However, before anything got underway, Ginn's season was ended by Tommy John Surgery. Obviously, that took a big hit to his draft stock, but there's still plenty to dream about.

Ginn combines two potential plus-plus (70 grade) pitches at the top of his repertoire that makes it easy to dream. His fastball combines premium velocity with fantastic movement and his sweeping slider flashes an elite strikeout pitch. Scouts are also relatively confident his changeup will become an average pitch, which would give Ginn a potential top of the rotation pitch mix. As with Kelley and Wilcox, it's still impossible to read what Ginn's market really looks like. All three of these players could be options for the Giants at 49, off the board before they pick, or unsignable to anyone.

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SF Giants MLB Draft Day 2 targets

The Fun Prep Bats: Blaze Jordan, Kevin Parada, Masyn Winn, David Calabrese

I've long been a Blaze Jordan fan, as have thousands of people around the country, but the Mississippi State commit seems likely to head to school if he isn't drafted relatively early on Day 2. Jordan's bat is his only carrying tool, as he's likely earmarked for a future at first base or as a DH, but there's plenty of bat to dream on. Incredible raw power combines with an advanced hit tool that makes the 17-year-old an easy hitter to dream on.

Unlike Jordan, who has been famous for years from viral home run derby highlight videos, Kevin Parada has been the definition of a pop-up prospect. Parada has an advanced feel to hit and projects to have both above-average hitting and power ability. He's technically listed as a catcher and admittedly it would be hilarious to see the panic from Giants fans, but Parada seems unlikely to remain behind the plate and is more likely an outfielder or third baseman in the future.

Winn is an exciting two-way player who sits at 92-96 mph off the mound and has a decent slider. Here's more hotly desired for his potential as a hitter though, Winn combines great bat speed, solid raw power, with plus speed, and potential above-average defense at shortstop. Exciting two-way players are always fun and my favorite type of prospects, but they tend to be harder signs since they like to continue working both ways for as long as possible.

The consensus best Canadian prospect in this draft, Calabrese still is only 17 and is one of the youngest players available this cycle. A plus-plus runner, scouts are confident he'll be able to cover a lot of ground in centerfield. The bat needs further development, but he shows good bat-to-ball skills and a few scouts think he'll fill out his 5'10'' frame and has potential average power to pair with an above-average hit tool.

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SF Giants MLB Draft Day 2 targets

Exciting Prep Arms: Alex Santos, Jared Jones, Alejandro Rosario, Markevian Hence

All these players are considered a tier below Kelley, but this is an electric group of exciting prep arms. Santos, Jones, and Rosario are all power arms that have flashed high-90s velocity, but have had issues with control or consistency. Hence, on the other hand, is more refined with a low-90s heater that plays up because of his advanced feel for a slider, curveball, and changeup that all flash as potential plus offerings.

As with any high schooler, signability is always up in the air. Hence is young for his class (still not 18), which should help him with more analytically inclined organizations. Combining that with his advanced feel to pitch and Hence fits a highly demanded profile. With that in mind, I'd be surprised if the Arkansas commit gets to campus.

The other three tend to be actually ranked above Hence, but likely have a much larger range of rankings team by team. Jones flashes an above-average slider and is trying to develop a changeup as well, but there is some severe reliever risk. Jones is a fantastic athlete, with above-average speed and raw power, and gets rave character reviews that leave plenty of room to dream, but some teams probably won't be considering him because of some issues holding velocity.

Rosario flashes an above-average splitter and slider that play off his 94-97mph fastball well. Rosario has a small 6-foot-1, 160-pound frame, but has a fairly easy delivery that leads scouts to believe he will be able to hold velocity without abnormal injury risk. The biggest knock on Rosario is the particulars of his fastball. Many scouts were worried that he hasn't racked up the strikeout numbers that one might expect from a prep-pitcher of his caliber, suggesting his fastball's movement may play below it's velocity.

Santos is the youngest of the three and is probably the largest projection play of the group. This past year, Santos has bulked up over 210 pounds and begun consistently hitting the mid-90s with his fastball. His delivery has some reliever concern, but his three-quarters release point generates plenty of spin on his curveball and changeup that have the building blocks of a dominant reliever.

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SF Giants MLB Draft Day 2 targets

College Arms: Cole Henry, Ian Bedell, Zach McCambley, Luke Little

This is probably my favorite group of the bunch, in part, because I'm confident that they'll be signable. McCambley has been my draft crush for a long time. Young for his class (turned 21 in May), McCambley has two-plus pitches that come as close as it comes to ensuring a high-leverage reliever floor. His fastball sits between 93-95mph but consistently goes higher as well. His breaking ball has the kind of sharp-late movement scouts dream about and a few even put a plus-plus grade on the pitch.

If you look at the stats, McCambley looks like a first-round pick. He struck out over a batter an inning every season of his career and has improved his walk rate every step of the way. Between his performance in the Cape Cod League last summer and his pandemic shortened spring season McCambley threw 45.2 innings, struck out 56, walked just 14, and has a 1.77 ERA.

The concern with McCambley is he has no third offering at the moment. Generally, a player needs three pitches to be a successful starter and is otherwise ticketed for relief work. However, McCambley averaged over 6 innings an appearance this spring and as teams implement more and more hybrid starter/reliever techniques, he seems perfectly suited for a three-inning swing role.

Henry, a draft-eligible sophomore, has all the tools of a frontline starter. The LSU ace has a stocky 6-foot-4, 215-pound frame and shows a pair of plus pitches, another above-average offering, and even has a fourth potentially average pitch. Scouts have been frustrated by Henry's consistency, but his production has been consistent. He's been the number one starter at LSU from Day 1 and he hasn't disappointed. To me, Henry was a backend Day 1 talent, but still just a sophomore, I wouldn't be surprised to see him head back to school.

Bedell has been a strong contributor out of the Missouri bullpen over his first two seasons, but began starting on the Cape and was in Mizzou's rotation at the start of the season. A young junior (won't be 21 until September), Bedell seems like one of the safer arms. He already shows plus-control and above-average command of a solid, but not an elite arsenal of pitches. His changeup is probably his only pitch that projects as above-average, but his fastball, curveball, and slider all could be big-league offerings as well. While he lacks the ceiling of the other pitchers in this group, he's still a great grab on Day 2.

With Little, everyone knows why scouts are excited. The San Jacinto Junior College southpaw has an intimidating (6-foot-8, 245 pounds) frame that consistently generates upper-90s velocity and has touched 100 mph in games. Since the season was cut short, film from Little's bullpen sessions has shown him reaching another level, touching 105 mph. Frankly, that's all anyone needs to know to be excited about the South Carolina commit. His slider flashes as an above-average offering and he was doing a better job locating it this year.

He's always had a pretty violent delivery, which is a reason to be cautious, but also a reason to be excited. Little has shown a willingness to work on his delivery over the past year and his powerful frame leaves plenty of reason to dream.

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SF Giants MLB Draft Day 2 targets

College Bats: Freddie Zamora, Kaden Polcovich, Casey Schmitt

Zamora is the best prospect of this group and will probably go in round 2. Schmitt and Polcovich are more likely to go between rounds 3-5. Zamora is a potential plus-defensive shortstop who also has the potential to be an above-average hitter. As I mentioned in my pre-draft piece, the Giants are pretty thin at shortstop and Zamora would immediately rank above Tyler Fitzgerald as the best true shortstop in the system.

Zamora suffered a knee injury that took away any playing time his junior season, but he showed a decent jump in his power from his first to second year in school and might have a little more in the tank. Regardless of the power though, Zamora walked more than he struck out in both of his seasons.

Over his collegiate career, Zamora struck out in just 9.3% of his plate appearances while walking in over 11.3% of his trips to the plate. His propensity to get on base and put the ball in play leads me to believe he'll develop an above-average hit tool.

Polcovich is a small (5-foot-8, 180 pounds) future utility infielder who has flashed the productivity to be a bit more. A JUCO transfer to Oklahoma State, Polcovich really got on scout's radar at the Cape Cod League last summer. In 40 games, Polcovich put up a .305/.426/.473 triple-slash with nearly as many walks (27) as strikeouts (29). In the abbreviated season, Polcovich was destroying pitching hitting .344/.494/.578 with 19 walks to just 10 strikeouts in 18 games. He has limited arm strength but has fantastic instincts that may allow him to play beyond his athleticism. He should at least be able to handle second base, third base, and left field with a contact-oriented bat that could generate double-digit home runs.

Schmitt is a solid two-way prospect who's been the closer and third baseman at San Diego State. From my view, he's a future 45 reliever and batter, which might allow him to consistently contribute 1.5-2.5 wins above replacement with a creative coaching staff and front office. His fastball sits from 92-94mph and has tremendous late-movement that allows it to play up and pair well with a potentially average curveball and splitter. As a hitter, Schmitt is an above-average third baseman with a strong arm and above-average raw power. The hit tool is pretty underdeveloped and he has yet to tap into his power potential, but some scouts are quite high on his potential to develop at the plate with more time.

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SF Giants MLB Draft Day 2 targets

Intriguing Seniors or Old Juniors: Chris Lanzilli, Mason Erla, Brett Auerbach

Lanzilli was selected by the Giants last year in the 37th round and they've shown a propensity to draft guys in back-to-back years. While Lanzilli still has a year of collegiate eligibility left, he'll be 22 years old in a week and might be more inclined to go pro. Scouts seem to grade Lanzilli without any above-average tools, but his production at Wake Forest has been very good and he did well on the Cape as well (.293/.365/.467). He's definitely limited to left field defensively, so the bat will have to carry him, but he seems like an intriguing 5th round or free agent option.

Auerbach probably doesn't make sense for the Giants (a senior-sign catcher), but he's still one of my favorite senior prospects. According to an industry source, the Alabama catcher is drawing interest from at least half of teams as a potential free agent or underslot signing. He's young for his class (still only 21), and has played second base, third base, and the outfield well all while holding his own behind the plate. He wasn't great with the bat as a junior, but he made the Cape Cod League All-Star team last summer and appeared to have taken tremendous strides at the start of this season.

Erla is my favorite wild-card pitcher in this class. Already nearly 23, Erla has remade his body over the past year, and scouts were excited to see if his progress held into the spring. Since the season got cut short it's still quite uncertain, but there's no doubt that he was a different pitcher. After struggling to get swings and misses for his entire Michigan State career, Erla had 14.5 K/9 in his 4 spring starts. He's technically a redshirt-junior because he missed almost all of 2017 with an arm injury, but at his age I expect a team to take the jump.