San Diego Padres: Pitching a priority in first ten rounds

jgoehring
Jun 13, 2017; San Diego, CA, USA; A detailed view of a basket of Major League baseballs before the game between the Cincinnati Reds and San Diego Padres at Petco Park. Mandatory Credit: Jake Roth-USA TODAY Sports
Jun 13, 2017; San Diego, CA, USA; A detailed view of a basket of Major League baseballs before the game between the Cincinnati Reds and San Diego Padres at Petco Park. Mandatory Credit: Jake Roth-USA TODAY Sports /
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The San Diego Padres placed an emphasis on pitching from the very first pick through their pick in round ten. The organization is clearly taking this draft seriously.

The San Diego Padres took one of the most highly touted high school pitching prospects with their first pick, third overall, in this week’s MLB draft. MacKenzie Gore, as we reported on, provides the organization with the hope of a potential front end of the rotation starter at the major league level in the future.

The Padres did not stop here, however. In the first ten rounds, San Diego had eleven picks, and spent six of them on pitching. While Gore is a potential star in the future, the rest present the organization with desperately needed pitching depth.

The next two picks, the Padres actually went with the catching position, taking Luis Campusano and Blake Hunt, two more high school prospects. San Diego’s third round selection was a center fielder, Mason House, also straight out of high school.

But then, the club got back to their primary focus, which has been pitching so far. Five of their last seven selections have been pitchers, three righties and two southpaws.

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Four of these five are over the age of 20, and have competed at the collegiate level. The draft strategy was, it appears, to make some riskier but quite possibly more rewarding selections early on, before going with the more proven players who have performed at the college level in later rounds. This will help hopefully with the major league rotation in years to come, as well as organizational depth as a whole.

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A complete list of San Diego’s eleven draft picks through the first ten rounds:

  •  MacKenzie Gore, LHP, Whiteville HS
  •  Luis Campusano, C, Cross Creek HS
  •  Blake Hunt, C, Mater Dei HS
  • Mason House, CF, Whitehouse HS
  • Sam Keating, RHP, Canterbury School
  • Jonny Homza, 3B, South Anchorage HS
  • Aaron Leasher, LHP, Morehead State
  • Nick Margevicius, LHP, Rider
  • Oliver Basabe, SS, Faulkner
  • Alex Cunningham, RHP, Costal Carolina
  • Dominic Taccolini, RHP, Arkansas

Next: A closer look at Mackenzie Gore

The draft continues all day Wednesday with rounds 11-40. Live coverage can be found on mlb.com. Stay tuned to Friars on Base for more draft analysis as the Padres conclude this very important stage of the rebuilding process!

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