Tonight, the MLB Draft takes place, but there is a mystery going on in the draft on where Nick Senzel will land. Multiple big time analysts have him going anywhere inside the top 10, except to the Phillies at number one. Honestly, all teams would love to have a hitting machine like this Tennessee Volunteer.
Next, Nick Senzel is considered by many to be the best college bat in the draft. Now, when watching Senzel, I found out that he combines strength and bat speed from the right side of the plate that brings out a patient all-fields approach that should help him to hit for both average and power, even though his power will come more over time. He knows how to adjust the strike zone. He led the Cape in runs (33), hits (56), doubles (16), RBIs (33), extra-base hits (21), total bases (86), slugging (.558) and OPS (.976), earning MVP honors and winning the league’s Top Prospect Award from scouts. Lastly, the way baseball is heading in, his value is higher as a second baseman with the offensive output he produces over being a average valued third baseman.
In addition to Senzel’s skill set, the biggest question is where he will play defensively. He is up and down with the glove that would most likely leave him at third base, as he moved there officially this past season at Tennessee. He has some good speed that allows him to cover a good amount of his area, which is why Most people can also see him move to second base. He has quick hands that allows him to field the ball and deliver a quick strike to first base. He has the arm to play third.
Furthermore, in my latest MLB mock draft, I have the 20-year-old infielder going 16th overall to the Los Angeles Angels. Why? Well with the amount of top talented pitchers early in the draft, he could see them go first over him, as pitching wins championships. Nick Senzel would escalate quickly through the Angels minor league system as they have the worst farm in baseball. They have the worst farm system because they traded all of their top prospects away for veterans that have failed in Los Angeles. Cowart and Kubitza should be the future third baseman. Johnny Giavotella is the team’s current second baseman and has filled in nicely, but is not the future there for them.
Shockingly, one analyst has Senzel going second overall in this draft to the Cincinnati Reds, which I have them taking a pitcher, but they have plenty of young arms, so I can agree with the analyst that they can take an advanced bat. He would also fly through the Reds minors, as his hitting will lead the way. He batted .352/.456/.595 for the Volunteers this past season. Cozart and Phillips will not be there when Senzel arrives, but he is looking like the Reds future third baseman with the team not having a future player there in place already. They can eventually move Eugenio Suarez to shortstop when Senzel reaches the pros.
Another team that could be in play could be the Oakland Athletics, where Senzel will most likely be ruled out as the team’s future third baseman with their fourth best prospect Matt Chapman being a third baseman, plus Chapman is a plus defender at third. Senzel would be the team’s second baseman in two years as he would produce at a higher level than Lowrie at a cheaper rate. The glove is not much different, but Senzel will develop into a better defender with Ron Washington helping the infielders improve on their defense. The A’s are picking sixth overall in this year’s draft.
Finally, 8th overall is owned this year by the San Diego Padres, which could use this monstrous hitter, but they do need pitching like crazy. If Senzel lands to them, they will take him, as it is hard to pass up on a player like his caliber and with their not being many top college bats, you take him. Solarte can play either third or second base. Senzel will join this team real quick. There is no one in the Padres minor league system that will get in Senzel’s way.
Prediction: Nick Senzel will get drafted by the Cincinnati Reds, even though Oakland seems like a great spot for this kid.