The first round of the 2019 Major League Baseball player draft got underway on Monday, June 3rd, with picks: 1-78 (Rounds: 1st, supplemental 1st, competitive balance A, 2nd, competitive balance B, supplemental 2nd). The draft continues with Rounds 3-10 on Tuesday, June 4, and concludes with Rounds 11-40 on Wednesday, June 5. The Baltimore Orioles got the first pick in this year’s draft, which is held once again in Secaucus, New Jersey.
Black College Nines presents its annual pre-mock draft of HBCU baseball players worthy of the MLB Draft. Here we highlight some of the top HBCU prospects in the 2019 draft class based on our contact with scouts who attend HBCU and non-HBCU baseball games during both fall ball scout day and during the past season. We breakdown our top five candidates in the draft, plus the rumors and potential picks.
Our five rising HBCU players are draft eligible and already showing the potential to go in this year’s draft…
Top Five For 2019
1 Cory Joyce, INF, North Carolina Central University
2 Tim Luth, RHP, North Carolina A&T University
3 Darren Kelly, RHP, Alabama State University
4 Tyler Laporte, INF, Southern University
5 Derrick Sylve, RHP, Selma University
Overall, scouts are looking for athletes. They have evaluated player’s who understands how to play the game, experience, competitive in nature and are the standouts who have scouts excited.
The last few years, major league baseball has selected pitchers out from HBCUs. I don’t think that trend will change in the 2019 draft but from my scouting sources, the draft can lead to those with top potential rather than those filling a need.
The Chicago White Sox history of selecting college bats in the draft would lead to going after a “toolsy”, up the middle player with a solid bat. That would be the obvious in Corey Joyce.
The San Diego Padres has consistently taken the best and most talented player with their draft picks. They do have a need for a college arm that can fill the window of logging innings or in short relief. Tim Luth, who throws hard, was mainly used this year as a starter, but can be used as either a starter or a set-up pitcher.
The New York Mets are more likely looking for pitching rather than hitting according their general manager. The Mets are considering a physical pitcher with four pitches and a good delivery. Alabama State’s Darren Kelly has put up big numbers and he’s a standout defender and can paint the corners of the plate for strikes.
The Toronto Blue Jays figures to keep a run on college players. They are in the hunt for either a shortstop or corner infielder with a heavy bat. Tyler Laporte, Southern University’s third basemen would be difficult for the Blue Jays to pass up. A defensive infielder who can hit a ton and has the tools of a leadoff or number two, three or four hitter in a line up plus speed on the base paths.
The Atlanta Braves, from pre-draft reports this year, are looking at drafting in order one college player, one high school, one pitcher, one hitter, is their way of thinking. The Braves draft prospects may call for a hard-throwing right-hander. Selma’s Derrick Sylve is crafty, can sit in the 90s with quality breaking stuff, throws hard and uses every square inch of the strike zone.
HBCU baseball has a number of talented all-around position players and hurlers who are high-level athletes, grade out as average or better in all tool areas by MLB standards and are on the plus side with raw power, speed, arm strength.
Other potential names to watch for in the MLB Draft in 2019 include:
Leon Hunter RHP – North Carolina A&T University
Yamil Pagan OF – Alabama State University
Devin Rivera Ozuna RHP – Coppin State University
Michael Johnson RHP – North Carolina A&T University
Darnell Maisonet LHP – Delaware State University
Darrius Wright RHP – Alabama State University
Justin Baber INF – North Carolina A&T University
Isaiah Torres OF – Grambling State University
Alsander Womack INF – Norfolk State University
Raul Hernandez INF – Jackson State University
Daniel Lingua OF – Prairie View A&M University
Olajide Oloruntimelehin OF – Texas Southern University
Javeyan Williams OF – Southern University
Dexter Macaay C – Grambling State University
Connor Whalen RHP – Southern University
Hunter Babineaux INF – Texas College
Connor Slagill INF – West Virginia State University
Jordan Ransom OF – Kentucky State University
Kevin Bryant II OF – Albany State University
Roman Oliu RHP – Albany State University
Marcus Hardy INF – Selma University
Quantico Dodson-Williams INF – Albany State University
Jahleel Sewer OF – Virginia State University
Cameron Phelts OF – Texas College
Wyatt Reid INF – Edward Waters College