Dejan Kovacevic writes that in spite of the recent buzz about Virginia pitcher Danny Hultzen and Oklahoma high school pitcher Dylan Bundy, the Pirates are still focused on Rice third baseman Anthony Rendon and UCLA pitcher Gerrit Cole as possible selections with the top overall pick in the 2011 MLB Draft.
Now, I know from conversations as well as precedent that the Pirates genuinely do not have their minds made up at this point. Their approach is to take things to their big draft meetings — which are next week in Bradenton — and have it out there, with all the information, computers and everything else. Neal Huntington encourages open debate with these kinds of things.
I also know that the only thing motivating the Pirates with this pick will be getting the best talent. They are placing zero priority on how quickly the kid arrives, what position he plays or anything like that.
Well, good – as I wrote a few days ago, the Pirates shouldn’t be drafting for need. I hope the player will be Rendon, though – pitchers, whether of the high school or college variety, are scary and never particularly ‘safe,’ no matter how sure they might seem. Rendon has injury issues of his own, but I hope the Pirates will take Cole or another pitcher only if Rendon’s injury problems are truly worrisome or if they feel Cole is just too great a talent to pass up.