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White Sox 2019 First Round Draft Preview

Who will the White Sox select with the third overall pick in the 2019 MLB Draft?

The MLB draft is quickly approaching. The White Sox have their prized third overall pick due to their 2018 finish. I’ve heard rumblings that the Sox front office and scouting department may deviate from their past plan of specifically drafting college players to shore up the depth in the farm system and have closer-to MLB ready talent. However, this year, they could draft a high schooler. Here is how most, if not all, mock draft projections have gone.

  1. Adley Rutschman, C, Oregon St. – Orioles
  2. Bobby Witt, Jr., SS, Colleyville High School (Texas) – Royals
  3. Either C.J. Abrams, SS, Blessed Trinity High School (Georgia) or Andrew Vaughn, 1B, Cal – White Sox

There are some stragglers that could sneak into the top 3-4, but most mock drafts have the aforementioned list. Most have the Sox taking Abrams, who is more of a raw high schooler. This is a high risk, high reward-type draft pick. The reason is that Abrams is in high school. I know this is more of a Moneyball philosophy, but he hasn’t faced college pitching yet. Abrams is in the baseball hotbed of Texas, but he’s a five-tool player and very young.

Vaughn, on the other hand, is a junior in the Pac-12 slashing .402/.531/.819 with 23 HRs, 44 BBs, and 18 Ks. This is definitely the safer pick, as Vaughn could be MLB ready more quickly than Abrams, but you pretty much know what you’re getting in the high-power first baseman. If the Sox plan on keeping Collins and Abreu around, Vaughn is blocked for the foreseeable future, which might lead them to pick Abrams to have more talent up the middle. However, if they see Anderson and Madrigal in their future, that could block Abrams.

The follow-up to these two is J.J. Bleday, a Junior right fielder out of the baseball factory that is Vanderbilt. Bleday is slashing .357/.467/.752 with 26 HRs, 48 BBs, 48 Ks. The power is there, but I do not see the Sox adding to the already stacked outfield of young talent in their farm. It’s an option, but the Sox are taking Abrams or Vaughn unless someone completely changes their mind.

Frankly, I am on the side of drafting Vaughn. He’s already put together and you know what you’re getting. Abrams is a risk, and if Madrigal or Collins isn’t who we originally thought he was, taking a risk could hurt three straight drafts. Ideally, Rutschman falls due to his skills behind the dish, but a miracle will have to occur for this to happen. Having a top-three pick pretty much establishes who you are taking. In the second round, they will most likely go after a pitcher, so keep your eyes peeled! The White Sox will make a potentially franchise-altering pick on Monday. Get ready!


Featured Photo: Abrams – Perfect Game | Vaughn – Cal Athletics

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