2022 MLB Draft: Mock Draft 4.0

The 2022 MLB draft begins on July 17 in Los Angeles. This year’s class is deep with position players. The pitching crop has multiple high-end prep arms while the college class is less talented, especially after numerous pitchers suffered season-ending injuries.

Players have been separating themselves since I wrote my last mock draft. But there is still time for players to solidify themselves as first-round picks between now and draft day.

Below is a look at a first-round mock draft. Do you enjoy Baseball Prospect Journal’s draft content? Support the work we do by subscribing to the Baseball Prospect Journal Patreon page.

1. Baltimore Orioles: Druw Jones, OF, Wesleyan (Ga.) HS

Jones is the son of former MLB outfielder Andruw Jones. He is a quality defensive outfielder with above-average speed and plenty of potential remaining in his game. The right-handed hitter consistently barrels up pitches and has improved his power potential over the last year.

If the Orioles decide to go underslot, Louisiana State first baseman Jacob Berry is an option with this pick. Cal Poly Brooks Lee also could command slightly less than Jones at No. 1.

2. Arizona Diamondbacks: Elijah Green, OF, IMG Academy (Fla.)

Green is an elite prep prospect who has an exciting toolset. There aren’t many holes in Green’s game. The 6-foot-3, 225-pound outfielder has elite speed and exceptional arm strength. He is a refined prep talent who might be the best draft-eligible prep player in the last five years.

3. Texas Rangers: Jackson Holliday, SS, Stillwater (Okla.) HS

The 6-foot-1, 180-pound left-handed hitting shortstop has notable bat-to-ball skills. His hitting ability and bat speed cause scouts to believe he will hit for above-average power in pro ball. Defensively, Holliday is athletic and possesses solid arm strength.

Holliday has notable bloodlines, as he is the son of seven-time MLB All-Star Matt Holliday. He is an Oklahoma State commit where his uncle, Justin, is the head coach.

Holliday has soared up draft boards this year. I ranked him as the 30th-best prospect before the season. But now, Holliday has solidified himself as a top-three pick and is in the mix to go first overall.

4. Pittsburgh Pirates: Brooks Lee, SS, Cal Poly

Lee is the best college hitter in this year’s class. The Cal Poly star is a 6-foot-2, 205-pound switch-hitting shortstop with a well-rounded toolset. He’s an aggressive hitter with respectable power, an above-average hit tool and the ability to drive the ball to all fields.

He is athletic and possesses plenty of arm strength. I believe he can remain at shortstop long term, but some scouts feel he is better suited at third base.

Read a detailed feature story on Lee and his skills here.

5. Washington Nationals: Kevin Parada, C, Georgia Tech

Parada is a 6-foot-1, 200-pound catcher known for his offensive ability. He uses a mature approach and drives the ball to all fields with authority. He displays an impressive ability to hit for average and power. Scouts are split on if he can remain at catcher long term.

Read a detailed feature story on Parada and his skills here.

6. Miami Marlins: Termarr Johnson, 2B, Mays (Ga.) HS

Johnson has one of the best pure hitting abilities in this draft class. The 5-foot-10, 175-pound left-handed hitter has the best pure hitting ability in the class. He also has exceptional bat speed and uses his compact swing to drive the ball with authority.

7. Chicago Cubs: Cam Collier, 3B, Chipola College

Collier consistently squares up the ball and drives the ball to all parts of the field. He was one of the top prep prospects in the 2023 class until he reclassified in August 2021. He also graduated high school early and enrolled at Chipola College for the spring semester.

Read a detailed feature story on Collier and his skills here.

8. Minnesota Twins: Gavin Cross, OF, Virginia Tech

Cross hits for plenty of power and might have the best hit tool in the college class. Defensively, Cross will stick in right field long-term, as he has above-average arm strength and athleticism.

Read a detailed feature story on Cross and his skills here.

9. Kansas City Royals: Jacob Berry, 1B/OF, Louisiana State

Berry hits for average and above-average power to all parts of the field. He is an offensive-first player with all of his value tied in his bat. While he is one of the top hitters in this class, scouts don’t know what position he profiles best in the long term.

10. Colorado Rockies: Jace Jung, 2B, Texas Tech

Jung is a 6-foot, 200-pound polished left-handed hitter with above-average skills at the plate. He has an advanced approach and hits for average and power. He also displays impressive plate discipline.

Read a detailed feature story on Jung and his skills here.

11. New York Mets: Daniel Susac, C, Arizona

Susac is a 6-foot-4, 205-pound right-handed-hitting catcher who is an advanced player in all aspects of the game. Offensively, Susac projects as a middle-of-the-order bat with above-average power and hitting ability. He uses a simple setup at the plate and drives the ball to all parts of the field.

Read a detailed feature story on Susac and his skills here.

12. Detroit Tigers: Chase DeLauter, OF, James Madison

DeLauter’s season ended early due to an injury. When healthy, DeLauter is a 6-foot-4 and 235-pound outfielder with five-tool potential. He has an easy left-handed swing and hits for average and power. Scouts project him as an above-average hitter with above-average power in pro ball.

Read a detailed feature story on DeLauter and his skills here.

13. Los Angeles Angels: Gabriel Hughes, RHP, Gonzaga

Hughes has improved his draft status this spring, moving into the conversation as the top college arm. He has the intangibles, repertoire, and makeup scouts seek in a starting pitcher.

Read a detailed feature story on Hughes and his skills here.

14. New York Mets: Connor Prielipp, LHP, Alabama

Prielipp, a Wisconsin native, has hardly pitched in his college career. He recently threw a bullpen session for scouts, marking the first time he has pitched since April 2021 due to Tommy John surgery.

Scouts rave about Prielipp’s potential. If he was healthy and dominating opposing hitters, he would be in the mix to go first overall. Scouts believe he has the chance to be the first pitcher selected in this year’s draft. The Mets are a team to watch due to their two first-round picks and plenty of signing bonus money.

15. San Diego Padres: Dylan Lesko, RHP, Buford (Ga.) HS

Lesko was the clear-cut top prep arm in the draft until undergoing Tommy John surgery in April. Some still believe he is worthy of going in the top 10 due to his pitches and ace potential, according to sources.

He is 6-foot-3, 195 pounds, and throws a mid-90s fastball from an athletic and repeatable delivery. Lesko’s fastball, curveball and changeup are all above-average offerings. His changeup might be the best in the 2022 draft.

16. Cleveland Guardians: Zach Neto, SS, Campbell

Neto uses a short, compact swing to barrel up pitches and hit for average and power. He is a confident and disciplined hitter who doesn’t strike out a ton. Defensively, Neto has above-average athleticism and plenty of range at shortstop. Some scouts believe Neto profiles best at second base. But Neto’s skills and athleticism give him a chance to remain at shortstop long-term.

Read a detailed feature story on Neto and his skills here.

17. Philadelphia Phillies: Brock Porter, RHP, St. Mary’s (Mich.) Prep

The 6-foot-4, 205-pound righty throws a mid-90s fastball that has touched 99 mph and features movement. Porter throws his fastball with ease. It is the best fastball in the prep class. Porter’s slider and curveball are quality-breaking pitches. He also shows a tremendous feel for his above-average changeup.

18. Cincinnati Reds: Cole Young, SS, North Allegheny (Pa.) HS

The 6-foot, 180-pound shortstop is a left-handed hitter with an easy swing that allows him to drive the ball to the gaps. He currently possesses below-average power but likely will add more to his game as he matures. Either way, his hit tool will be his calling card at the next level.

19. Oakland Athletics: Sterlin Thompson, OF, Florida

Thompson has a strong feel for hitting and an advanced approach at the plate. He has a strong hit tool and notable raw power. Thompson moved to the outfield in college after playing the infield in high school. He profiles in right field long term.

Read a detailed feature story on Thompson and his skills here.

20. Atlanta Braves: Justin Crawford, OF, Bishop Gorman (NV) HS

Carl Crawford’s son has a huge upside with above-average speed and quality defensive skills. He will stick in center field long term. At the plate, the left-handed hitter hits more for average than power but has the potential to be an exciting hitter in the pro ranks.

21. Seattle Mariners: Dylan Beavers, OF, California

Beavers is a 6-foot-4, 206-pound left-handed hitting outfielder and an aggressive hitter who hits for average and power. He sometimes expands the zone due to his aggressive approach, but he has made strides at the plate to turn into a more polished hitter.

Read a detailed feature story on Beavers and his skills here.

22. St. Louis Cardinals: Cooper Hjerpe, LHP, Oregon State

Hjerpe is a funky pitcher who has plenty of deception on the mound. He uses a low three-quarters arm slot. His fastball sits in the low-90s, while his slider is a devastating pitch due to his arm slot. An analytically-focused team will value Hjerpe and his potential.

23. Toronto Blue Jays: Robby Snelling, LHP, McQueen (NV) HS

Snelling is soaring up draft boards this spring after a tremendous senior season. He has a notable fastball, curveball combination. Snelli has the potential and makeup to thrive in pro ball. He drew interest as a two-sport student-athlete out of high school but is only committed to LSU for baseball.

24. Boston Red Sox: Brandon Barriera, LHP, American Heritage (Fla.) HS

Barriera attacks the strike zone with his low-to-mid-90s fastball, advanced changeup and solid breaking pitch. Scouts rave about his willingness to pitch aggressively and fill up the strike zone. He has some of the best stuff in the prep class.

25. New York Yankees: Blade Tidwell, RHP, Tennessee

Tidwell has an above-average fastball that consistently hits the high-90s. It’s an impressive offering that he uses to generate a lot of strikes. Tidwell’s slider is his best secondary pitch. It has sweeping breaking action and sits in the low-80s. It generates plenty of swings and misses, and he has confidence throwing his slider in any count.

Read a detailed feature story on Tidwell and his skills here.

26. Chicago White Sox: Jordan Beck, OF, Tennessee

Beck is a notable athlete with five-tool potential. He is a strong, physical player who hits for above-average power to all fields due to his strength and bat speed. Defensively, Beck profiles as an above-average right fielder due to his solid speed and above-average arm strength.

Read a detailed feature story on Beck and his skills here.

27. Milwaukee Brewers: Jett Williams, SS, Rockwall-Heath (TX) HS

Williams has proven experience squaring up premium pitching and projects as a top-of-the-order hitter in pro ball. The right-handed hitter has a quick and compact swing and drives the ball to the gaps with ease. He doesn’t swing-and-miss a lot and hits for some power.

Defensively, Williams is a high school shortstop with good arm strength and above-average speed. He moves well from side to side, allowing him to have plenty of range and make plays in the hole.

Scouts believe Williams has a chance to stick at shortstop long-term. But they feel he can handle second base and center field in pro ball if he doesn’t remain at shortstop.

Read a detailed feature story on Williams and his skills here.

28. Houston Astros: Brock Jones, OF, Stanford

Jones, 6-foot, 203 pounds, is a well-rounded player with five-tool potential. He started off slow this spring but is showing his impressive power and speed combination. He uses a simple swing and quiet setup at the plate to consistently square up the baseball to drive it to all parts of the field.

Read a detailed feature story on Jones and his skills here.

29. Tampa Bay Rays: Drew Gilbert, OF, Tennessee

Gilbert is a 5-foot-9, 185-pound center fielder with a well-balanced toolset and a team-first and energetic personality that teammates gravitate towards.

Offensively, the left-handed hitter drives the ball to all fields. He shows a nice blend of power and speed. He profiles as a top-of-the-order hitter in pro ball and has a solid approach and plate discipline. Defensively, Gilbert has all the attributes to remain in center field long term.

Read a detailed feature story on Gilbert and his skills here.

30. San Francisco Giants: Andrew Dutkanych, RHP, Brebeuf Jesuit (Ind.) HS

Dutkanych is a prototypical starting pitcher, possessing a repeatable delivery and a quality mix of pitches. His fastball hits 96 mph and features plenty of riding action. Due to that movement, his fastball plays better out of the zone, which is where it generates the most swings and misses.

He enhanced his draft status throughout the spring season. Even though he had some tougher starts recently, scouts believe he still has the skillset to hear his name called in the first round.

Read a detailed feature story on Dutkanych and his skills here.

Read more in-depth stories on top 2022 MLB draft prospects at Baseball Prospect Journal.

Dan Zielinski III has covered the MLB draft for seven years. He has interviewed 356 of the top draft prospects in that period, including four No. 1 overall picks. Multiple publications, including Baseball America, USA Today, MLB.com and The Arizona Republic, have quoted his work, while he has appeared on radio stations as a “MLB draft expert.” Follow him on Twitter @DanZielinski3.

Dan Zielinski III
Dan Zielinski IIIhttp://BaseballProspectJournal.com
Dan Zielinski III is the creator of the Baseball Prospect Journal and has covered the MLB draft since 2015. His draft work originally appeared on The3rdManIn.com, a sports website he started in December 2011. He also covered the Milwaukee Brewers as a member of the credentialed media for four years. Follow him on Twitter @DanZielinski3.

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