With the loss against the Cincinnati Reds in the final game of the season the Pittsburgh Pirates secured themselves the 4th pick in next summer’s draft
With the final game of the season wrapped up the Pittsburgh Pirates will enter the 2022 season with the fourth overall selection in the draft. This was after they finished with a 61-101 record, which ended up being just behind the Texas Rangers who had a 60-102 record.
This will be the second consecutive draft in which the Pittsburgh Pirates will own a top five selection. It will be the third straight draft in which the Pirates will possess a top 10 overall selection.
Next year’s draft looks to have some very notable names. Currently, the best prospect available is Elijah Green. The high school outfielder is considered a potential five-tool player. However, the most popular name is likely Druw Jones, Andruw Jones’s son. Just like his dad, Jones is an outfielder. While his power potential doesn’t project as high as his dad’s, he’s still considered one of the top five prospects going into the draft. The top college players consist of Connor Prielipp, Bryce Osmond (both are RHPs), and Peyton Graham (3B/SS).
The Pittsburgh Pirates have made the most of their drafts the last two years. In this past year’s draft, the team went on to select Henry Davis with the first overall pick. While questionable at the time as it was an under slot pick, the Pirates showed why they went with Davis.
They would go on to pick Anthony Solometo and Lonnie White Jr. with their second-round and competitive balance pick, both of which went over slot. But the big catch of the day, aside from Davis, would be Bubba Chandler, who went in the third round despite being a consensus top 20 draft prospect. Plus they got high-ceiling outfielder Braylon Bishop on another major over-slot deal in the 17th round.
The 2020 draft was very short, consisting of just five rounds. The Pittsburgh Pirates had six total picks (one for each round including a first-round competitive balance pick, the 31st overall selection). The Bucs selected Nick Gonzales with the 7th overall pick. Gonzales went into the draft as one of the best hitters available, and arguably the best pure hitter. His first professional season went great as he had a strong .950 OPS, .405 wOBA, and 150 wRC+. Their competitive balance pick ended up being Carmen Mldozinski, who also had a solid season down at High-A. He got promoted to Triple-A Indianapolis in the last days of the regular season.
Jared Jones (second-round pick) and Logan Hofmann (fifth-round pick) also had quality campaigns at their respective levels. They may have had just 6 picks to work with, but it seems they made the best out of it. Mlodzinski looks like he could make an impact as soon as next year, Gonzales is arguably a consensus top 50 prospect, and Jones and Hofmann look like solid prospects as well.
The Pirates getting another very high pick in the draft will help them further add even more quality depth to the organization. I’ve previously gone over in-depth a few of the draft’s top players in a way too early look ahead of it. There’s also the possibility they can secure a player better than the first 3 picks with the 4th selection. They could add another player with star potential to the likes of Nick Gonzales, Quinn Priester, Roansy Contreras, Henry Davis, and Liover Peguero. What player they will select will remain to be seen. Draft stock can change drastically over just one season. At one point, Kumar Rocker was a top 3 pick and arguably the best player. But based on what the Pirates have done so far, they’ll use that #4 selection wisely.