Photo credit: JMU Athletics
The Cleveland Guardians scouting department recently completed the three-day marathon known as the 2022 MLB Draft. As is always the case Cleveland sought to maximize their takeaway of talent. In so doing the organization appeared to stick to its model while bucking a few trends along the way to maximize opportunity and cash in on the talent that was at hand. We will explore all of that with a brief comment or two on each selection below.
Reviews of the draft class have ranged from scathing to glowing. See Keith Law whose comments seem to indicate the club made their selections without scouting their picks in person. On other hand, MLB.com ranked them in their top 6 for gleaning a very talented draft class. As Law correctly suggested Cleveland relied heavily on their model and data. This is an analytically inclined organization after all and that branches from the front office to the scouting department. However, unlike Law’s comments, Cleveland continues to scout for in-person views for assessment of potential selections. While those views may not be as frequent as they once were Covid fast-forwarded change in scouting departments all around baseball, not just Cleveland.
As is the case year to year, this draft class holds to the moniker beauty is in the eye of the beholder. What one sees as a successful draft class another may see as an utter failure to grab the best talent available. The truth is the organization makes the best pick for them not necessarily the most talented player on the board. Player development is a partnership after all, if the talent does not fit there is no need to force it. Simply put it is the scouting department’s job to maximize the talent that is brought into the organization by whatever means deemed necessary while balancing organizational evaluations and fit.
With this 2022 MLB Draft Review, we close our coverage of the 2022 MLB Draft cycle. Look for more draft coverage coming in the coming months. But first here is a pick-by-pick review of the draft class:
- Pitchers: (13)
- Position Players: (8)
Infielders – 2
Catchers- 1 (and 1- NDFA)
OF Chase DeLauter – the crown jewel of the draft class as the org’s top pick adds upside and intrigue at a position of long-time need. His ceiling is high, and his floor is safe.
RHSP Justin Campbell – Should start next season in Lake County. There is middle of the rotation type upside here. It’s a large frame with the potential for added strength and a tick or two more velocity.
LHSP Parker Messick – The left-hander displays excellent command from a low-3/4s arm slot which adds deception. With better conditioning, it would not be surprising to see him add velocity.
OF Joe Lampe– The speedy center fielder offers an advanced approach at the plate. While he lacks significant power but he nets extra bases with his speed.
2B Nate Furman – Another speedster with exceptional eye-hand coordination that translates into premium bat-to-ball skills. Remember this name the diminutive infielder/outfielder should be one to watch.
OF Guy Lipscomb – A small school (Belmont) product with high-end speed and good contact skills he could be an exciting player soon.
RHP Dylan DeLucia – Has some similarities to right-hander Tanner Burns with a smaller than a typical frame with a fastball, slider, and changeup in his pitch mix.
RHP Javier Santos Tejada – The power right-hander hits the upper 90s, with a slider, an underdeveloped curveball, and changeup. He’s raw and development will take time, but there’s stuff and spin to work with.
LHP Jackson Humphries – The prep lefty sits low-90s and touches 95 mph, he’s got a high spin slider and a changeup. He will require some patience as he develops but he’s a talented arm.
RHP Austin Peterson – The former Huskies ace sits low-90s with a nice slider and a change of pace. He was one of the nation’s leaders in strikeouts and has good command.
RHP Jacob Zibin – One of the youngest players available in the draft class, the native of British Columbia, CN will require time as he develops but there’s a low 90s to mid 90s heater that touches upper 90s he mixes that with a developing slider and a quality change.
RHP Magnus Ellerts – it’s a potential power reliever profile because of command. He excelled in the Cape and needs more development, but the stuff is intriguing.
RHP Jack Jasiak – He’s healthy now and should advance with some polish and continued pitch-ability.
INF Tyresse Turner– One of the fastest player’s in the draft class with positional versatility. He lacks the arm for anything more than 2B, LF, and CF.
OF Pres Cavenaugh – Can play all three OF spots with plus speed. Quality contact-skills.
LHP Adam Tulloch – Sits in the low-90s and touches 95, 96 mph. He needs consistency and to add command and there’s potential for a starter.
C Logun Clark – The Cali native has some pop in the bat and strong catch and throw skills. It will take time, but he works hard on his craft.
OF Angel Zarate – Displays excellent contact ability and has a very good approach. He’s a quality defender with versatility in the OF.
RHP Zack Jacobs – Will need time to add strength to his frame, but he has a good 4-pitch mix with exceptional command.
RHP Geo Rivera – it’s a potential power relief profile, but there’s a 4-pitch mix with high-spin breaking stuff and average command. There’s a chance Cleveland develops him as a starter.
LHP Shawn Rapp – With a nasty sweeping slider that generates out, he sits upper 80s and touches low 90s paired with a little utilized change-up.
C Marc Filia– Signed as an NDFA, he has baseball bloodlines, and athleticism with raw power, catch and throw skills, and on-base abilities via the HBP.
Re-racking the class based on Willie Hood’s pre-draft rankings/ranges (in parentheses):
Chase DeLauter (17 overall)
Justin Campbell (20 overall)
Parker Messick (60 overall)
Jacob Zibin (69 overall)
Jackson Humphries (94 overall)
Joe Lampe (123 overall)
Nate Furman (rounds 5-7)
Dylan DeLucia (rounds 5-7)
Guy Lipscomb (rounds 5-7)
Austin Peterson (rounds 5-7)
Tyresse Turner (rounds 8-10)
Javier Santos Tejada (rounds 8-10)
Magnus Ellerts (rounds 11-15)
Adam Tulloch (rounds 11-15)
Angel Zarate (rounds 11-15)
Logun Clark (rounds 11-15)
Jack Jasiak (rounds 16-20)
Pres Cavenaugh (rounds 16-20)
Geo Rivera (rounds 16-20)
Zach Walters rounds 16-20)
Shawn Rapp (rounds 16-20)
Overall, Cleveland exceeded their draft pool and pushed themselves within (a shade over) $500.00 of incurring the draft pick penalty. This is a return to their pre-covid approach, pushing the envelope to maximize talent. This class is a mixture of upside, risk, and a balance of both ceiling and floor. Watch for a few players to make a debut at Lynchburg at some point, but the bulk of the class will spend the remainder of this season in preparation for their 2023 affiliate assignments.