Every year it seems that mock drafts are proliferating, with more people attempting to suss out the pre-draft deals that teams definitely don’t agree to I don’t know what you’re talking about. There are a lot of approaches to the mock draft. There’s when the author drafts from the perspective of the team, saying what he or she would do in their shoes. There’s a mock draft based on what information the author has come across, piecing together bits of gossip to make a prediction and seeing the cascading effects. There’s a similar path of demonstrating multiple options for each pick based on what sources are saying and team tendencies, providing 3-4 possible selections at each juncture.
As always, this mock draft will not be like those mock drafts. Instead, it will follow in the proud tradition of our inaugural name draft from 2015, which was born from Craig’s realization that that year’s crop of talent included players with very, very silly names. After Ulysses Cantu went no. 1 overall in 2016, Jeter Downs was popped first in 2017, and the unimpeachable Owen Sharts earned top billing in 2018, who’ll win out in 2019? The Answer May Surprise You!
Per usual, we’re confining ourselves to MLB Pipeline’s list of top 200 draft prospects for the purposes of this exercise. That means that even if there was a player named, like, Enya Walletchange who wasn’t covered there within, he wouldn’t be eligible.* As always, to say there’s an element of subjectivity involved in picking these names would be incorrect: picking them is completely subjective. That being said, if you disagree with us, you’re wrong. Enjoy!
1. Baltimore Orioles: Shea Langeliers, C, Baylor
At first, this may seem like an enormous reach. Langeliers does not have the highest upside in this draft, I admit it, but he’s boasts the most versatility and the highest floor. Say “Shea Langeliers” in a British accent and he sounds like a successful Formula 1 driver. Say it in a Southern accent and he sounds like the beautiful saloon proprietor’s daughter who any gun-slinging protagonist would fight for. Say it in Mina from Veep’s accent and it sounds like a collection of hanging lights commonly featured in fine dining rooms. Say it in a New York accent and it sounds like an STD Paul LoDuca would’ve caught in Flushing in 2007. This name can be beautiful or haunting, regal or trashy, inspiring or foreboding. That’s a familiar dichotomy for Orioles fans and their associations with catchers drafted first.1 overall. Time is, after all, a flat circle. –BC
2. Kansas City Royals: Cameron Cannon, 2B/3B, University of Arizona
A powerful surname buoyed by alliteration and assonance? Don’t mind if I do. How good is Cameron’s arm? I think we already know. The bat? A weapon. Fallback? A cannon to destroy the worst stadium in college basketball. –CG
3. Chicago White Sox: Adley Rutschman, C, Oregon State
This is the strongest correlation between name talent and actual talent we’ve seen since Dansby Swanson went 1:1 in both the name and real drafts in 2015. I’m thrilled to land the 2019 draft’s presumptive No. 1 pick in Rutschman, who offers incredible name versatility at three overall. Adley Rutschman is the Vice President of Global Consumer Outreach for Whole Foods, but Adley Rutschman is also the Social Chair of the University of Wisconsin’s AEPhi chapter. Adley Rutschman is the name of the man who does the Outback Steakhouse commercial voice overs, but Adley Rutschman was also a Tobacco Baron in Georgia in the early 1800s. His name represents the true duality of man, which makes him perfect for a city with two very, very different baseball teams. –BC
4. Miami Marlins: Hudson Head, OF, Churchill HS (San Antonio, TX)
Name: Hudson Head
Baseline: 50 points
Alliteration bonus: +10 points
Body part bonus: +10 points
Innuendo bonus: +10 points
Famous river bonus: +5 points
Surname brevity bonus: +5 points
Final Score: 90/100
5. Detroit Tigers: Christian Cairo, SS, Calvary Christian HS (Clearwater, FL)
I’ll let you in on a little industry secret. When I draft names for this exercise, I don’t always pick pure quality over perceived jokeability. It’s a shocking admission, I’m sure, but it’s true. In popping Cairo here, I’m returning to the roots of this draft and placing talent above all else, because this is a dope-ass name. Christian Cairo could be the next Spider Man, or the star of a Tom Clancy novel, or the frontman in a cross-generational rock band. It’s incredibly modern, portrays a young man brimming with confidence, and lends itself to a wide range of unique marketing opportunities. Also, bad/lazy Egyptian puns! No matter how you slice it, Cairo injects some much-needed name talent into an organization that’s opted for boring monikers like Casey Mize, Alex Faedo and Christin Stewart in recent seasons. –BC
6. San Diego Padres: Keoni Cavaco, 3B, Eastlake HS (Chula Vista, CA)
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More about Keoni Cavaco™:
Keoni Cavaco™ isn’t just a name, it’s a lifestyle. A lifestyle brand, specifically. From sunglasses to graphic tees to furniture for your SoCal bungalow, Keoni Cavaco™ has what you need for your trips up the 5 to the 405 and back. Whether you’re gathering around your fire pit or you’re on the colonnade, Keoni Cavaco™ can supply the right vibe with textured fabric chairs and linen clothing to match.
More about the Padres:
Long ignored and accused of “not even being a real team” the Padres are enthusiastic about their new image within the league. They’re currently enjoying their time out of fifth place and appreciate you remembering their previous partnerships with brands like Tatito and Not Johnny Hustle rather than failed investments like Big Game James and The Trea Turner Dalliance. –CG
7. Cincinnati Reds: Jerrion Ealy, OF, Jackson Prep HS (Jackson, MI)
This moniker was created in a lab for optimal in-song name dropping. To wit:
[EXTREMELY NICKI MINAJ VOICE]
We crushin bottle after bottle of that Dom Perignon
We got our haters seein Reds like our name is Jerrion
Droppin haters dropping Rs like we’re drunk in Boston
Turning Early into Ealy boy you know you want some
[EXTREMELY ANTHONY KIEDIS VOICE]
Lollipops Power Rangers Alabaster Ceilings
Wannamango Haberdashers Jerrion Ealy
8. Texas Rangers: Trey Faltine, SS/RHP, Fort Bend Travis HS (Richmond, TX)*
Not to be confused with Très Falting, which is when you extremely prove Mordell’s conjecture. Or Tray Saltine, which was my dinner last night. Or Trey Faltering, which describes Mancini in the outfield. No. Do not confuse Trey Faltine with any of those because what Trey Faltine is, is the steal of the draft. Because his full name is actually Samson Faltine III.
Say it out loud. There is strength, grace, and air of opulence. Faltine might not fall into Texas’ usual milieu of draftee — he’s got a ton of feel and a spate of solid tools in the field, but isn’t the tools-monster they typically take. That said, they know value when they see it and sometimes it’s just Best Name Available situation. Sure he’s not in the Pipeline 200 but letting this name go by would be the biggest Faulting related to Samson since he told Delilah that his strength lay in his hair. –CG
9. Atlanta Braves: Dan Hammer, RHP, Pittsburgh*
Last year, the Braves popped Steele Walker in this exercise. This year, they grab his, uh, scene partner in Dan Hammer. This is not going to play well in certain parts of Georgia, but hey, neither do the Braves. Does Dan Hammer throw a curveball? Is it good? If not, he’s gotta work on that, because someone with this name deserves to be freezing fools with 12-6 breakers on the reg. Also, he might be Dan Haren operating under a Ron Mexico-esque pseudonym? –BC
10. San Francisco Giants: Trejyn Fletcher, OF, Deering HS (Portland, ME)
PARIS: “Hey I want to shoot Achilles through the ankle and kill him, you got anything for that job?”
TREJYN FLETCHER: “Yeah I’ve got just the thing.” –CG
11. Toronto Blue Jays: Brett Baty, 3B, Lake Travis HS (Austin, TX)
At first glance Baty might not seem like a great fit for the Blue Jays, as his father was not an exceptionally good major-leaguer in the late 1990s/early 2000s. But eventually the legacy plays dry up, and you have to go after name talent that stands on its own merits. Brett Baty has lots of things going for him. His name is alliterative. It’s short. It sort of has to do with a baseball thing. And it lends itself to a tremendous number of headline puns, whether Baty does good things at the plate or whether he does something insane. This is not as good of a name as Cameron Cannon, no, but as a consolation prize nine picks later, Brett Baty will do just fine. –BC
12. New York Mets: Carter Bins, C, Fresno State
[Extremely Commercial Announcer Voice]
Is your club cluttered? Can you take a step in the clubhouse without bumping into something old, broken, or both? You need to get your organization organized and there’s no better system than Carter Bins! Strong and sturdy, Carter Bins are able to receive whatever you throw at them. Carter Bins are the perfect solution for a team in disarray.
When it comes to Bins: do it smarter and just get Carter. –CG
13. Minnesota Twins: Braden Shewmake, SS, Texas A&M
Exactly the type of player who can help the Twins cobble together a solid infield in the future. Just be careful not to expose Braden Shewmake to a Moon Stone, as he will then evolve into Matt Shoemaker. –BC
14. Philadelphia Phillies: Hayden Dunhurst, C, Pearl River Central HS (Carriere, MS)
Rich Guy Names are falling in value in this day and age, and so the Phillies get a bit of steal here. It’s appropriate that he land on the club who is looking to spend “stupid money” because that’s the name of the production company he started to shoot YouTube videos of him and his friends cutting up $100 bills. His favorite shows going right now are Billions and Succession and he thinks Wags is vulgar but Roman is cool. His favorite scent is “New Yacht Smell.” Also, he might be Dirk Hayhurst operating under a Ron Mexico-esque pseudonym? –CG
15. Los Angeles Angels: James Beard, OF, Loyd Star HS (Brookhaven, MI)
It only seems fitting that the Angels get a player whose very name is associated with excellence, unimpeachable skill and, for most of the country, a total lack of accessibility. –BC
16. Arizona Diamondbacks: Michael Prosecky, LHP, Nazareth Academy (La Grange Park, IL)
WAITER: What can I get for you to drink this evening?
JAN: What did I tell you about “Prosecky?”
MICHAEL: I don’t… remember.
JAN: I told you not to say it. Do you remember that?
17. Washington Nationals: Quinn Priester, RHP, Cary-Grove HS (Cary, IL)
Guys like you don’t end up with gals like Quinn Priester. You went to private middle school, played lacrosse, wear Sperrys and max out your 401K contributions. For you, Easter pastels aren’t seasonal; they’re a way of life. You were born to settle down with the second daughter of an Old Money oil tycoon, or with the heiress to an incredibly successful boutique furniture chain. Your family expected nothing less, and you did your duty. But you never forgot Quinn, or her tattoo sleeve, or her mean streak, or her knowing smile. Quinn didn’t care what kind of car you drove; she just cared about the open road, the nearest dive and the next adventure. You were too scared to really go for it, of course, and even if you did, Quinn wouldn’t have let you tie her down. Or at least that’s what you tell yourself. Guess you’ll never know, because you settled for the white pickett fence and the goldendoodles and the sons named Hudson, Adley and Trey. When you think of Quinn now, you think of wasted youth, of risk not taken and of paths not traveled. You’re comfortable enough, sure, but are you even alive? Sometimes you think so, but when you think of Quinn, all you really feel is sad. –BC
18. Pittsburgh Pirates: Dylan Eskew, RHP, Sickles HS (Tampa, FL)
Some teams are going to think this pick is a little off. Others are going to call the Pirates crooked for getting him at this spot. Some critics will look askance at this pick, but Pittsburgh will insist that there is nothing off-kilter, and that the selection was straight up. –CG
19. St. Louis Cardinals: Ryan Pepiot, RHP, Butler
Something starts happening to certain men around Ryan Theriot’s age. They double down on their existing world views. Their circles get smaller. The echo chambers get louder. It starts in ways that seem innocuous enough; a shared Facebook meme about millennials, a Ben Shapiro retweet, a copy of a Bill O’Reilly book half-finished on the coffee table. But then it festers. Your Ryan Theriots only watch Fox News. They start wearing MAGA hats in public. They say things like “actually, Obama is the real racist” and they never miss a Tammy Lorber rant. Once upon a time, Ryan Theriot wasn’t so bad. A little rough around the edges, sure, but more or less, just like your or me. But now Ryan Theriot is Ryan Pepiot, and the only thing he loves more than trolling liberals is voting against his own best interests. Cardinals fans will love him. –BC
20. Seattle Mariners: Nick Lodolo, LHP, TCU
More like Nick SoDolo, imo. –CG
21. Atlanta Braves: Zach Linginfelter, RHP, Tennessee
I still don’t understand how Linginfelter isn’t a cheese? –BC
22. Tampa Bay Rays: Drey Jameson, RHP, Ball State
Drey Jameson. Dreymeson. Jrameson. Djraeymeson. No, I changed my mind, this name sucks. –CG
23. Colorado Rockies: Spencer Brickhouse, 1B, East Carolina
Spencer Brickhouse does not deserve to be named Brickhouse. Does he have a little chonk action going on? Sure, ever so slightly. But this man is closer to the low key thicc side of the scale than to the certifiable Brickhouse end. If you’re gonna be named Spencer Brickhouse, you need to look like Dan Vogelbach or at least C.J. Cron. Instead, this Brickhouse is more of the generic Pete Alonso variety. Hopefully a few seasons mainlining Coors will change that. –BC
24. Cleveland Indians: Bryson Stott, SS, UNLV
Have you been accused of offseason negligence? Slandered with accurate representations of your inaction? Libeled with the truth? The attorneys at BrysonStott are here to help*. Remember: if you call BrysonStott, we will invoice you. And that’s a promise.
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25. Los Angeles Dodgers: Kyren Paris, SS, Freedom HS (Oakley, CA)
In some ways, it’s unfortunate that Kyren Paris — who sounds like some sort of awful offspring of the Kardashian/Hilton family — is just a regular ole baseball player. Unlike the families from which it sounds like he hails, he will need to be successful at least 25 percent of the time in his chosen profession in order to keep his job. –BC
26. Arizona Diamondbacks: Jaxx Groshans, C, University of Kansas
Do I understand that Jaxx Groshans is from Texas and went to school in Kansas? I do. I accept these facts as reality. Does it convince me that this man didn’t date Eleanor Shellstrop in her first run on earth, forming The Most Arizona Couple of All Time? It does not.
27. Chicago Cubs: Jackson Rutledge, RHP, RHP, San Jacinto HS (San Jacinto, TX)
The Jackson Rutledge 2014 Pinot Noir is a Bon Appetit Reader’s Choice for best California Red under $50. It’s got notes of cherry and sage, and it pairs especially well with robust, gamey meats like lamb and bison. It’s the type of wine you might consider decanting, if you had a decanter. You want to feel classy when you buy it, but at the end of the day it’s still just a twist-off. –BC
28. Milwaukee Brewers: Michael Limoncelli, RHP, Horseheads High (Horseheads, NY)
We got Seth Beer to the Brewers last year and while there wasn’t quite the same alignment in nominative determinism, we’re still dealing in alcohol here. Limoncelli should provide a nice summery burst of flavor to Milwaukee when he arrives. –CG
29. Oakland Athletics: Justin Fall, Brookdale JC
What is the only season in which the Athletics routinely fail to live up to expectations? –BC
30. New York Yankees: Jacob Kostyshock, RHP, University of Arkansas
When you see rent prices in Manhattan after living in Arkansas. –CG
31. Los Angeles Dodgers: Kody Hoese, 3B, Tulane
At some point in Kody Hoese’s career, a stadium DJ is gonna get too cute and play “Make It Rain” during one of his at-bats amidst some light precipitation. Or maybe he’ll play “These Hoes Ain’t Loyal” if Kody goes on to change teams mid-career. In either scenario, some people will chuckle softly to themselves. Most will roll their eyes and move on. But the Bill Plaschke types will absolutely lose their friggin minds. We’re gonna get outrage columns telling us to Think Of The Children, and social media campaigns asking for the DJ to get fired, and then a GoFundMe campaign supporting the DJ if he does get kicked to the curb. Maybe we should just all walk into the ocean now and expedite the inevitable. Eat at Arby’s. –BC
32. Houston Astros: Avery Short, LHP, Southport HS (Indianapolis, IN)
The Astros have had success building around a very short second baseman. Now their next generation can be built around Avery Short, left-hander. –CG
33. Boston Red Sox: Kenyon Yovan, RHP, Oregon
Yet another Kenyon athlete who can dominate a classic Boston sport every April. –BC
*There are two exceptions to the rule this year, as we needed to “draft” earlier to accommodate our schedules. This resulted in two names that were picked that ultimately did not land in our usual pool of players.
**A note on Graeme Stinson, LHP, Duke: This is a trash-ass name.
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