Jonathan Mayo writes about the re-emergence of California high school lefty pitcher Max Fried, who pitched well on Thursday, showing a 90-95 MPH fastball and a big-breaking curve. This could be significant for the Pirates. The Bucs have been linked to Arizona State shortstop Deven Marrero, who most Pirates fans would probably rather avoid, due to his hitting struggles this season. If Fried’s stock rises, though, there seems to be some possibility the Bucs could take him instead — Mayo’s last mock draft listed Fried as an alternative to Marrero. Anyway, here’s Mayo:
There may have been a time when teams in the middle of the first, or maybe even the second half of the first round, thought they had a shot of Fried getting to them, it’s hard to imagine that happening now. My first projection had him going No. 10 to the Rockies, though as someone pointed out to me recently, Colorado might be a little gun shy about taking a SoCal high school lefty this high (see Matzek, Tyler). That point may now be moot as Fried could be gone by the time the Rockies make that selection.
High school pitchers are always risky picks, due to the difficulty in getting them all the way to the majors with their elbows and shoulders intact. At this point, though, Fried appears to have a bunch more upside, at least from an outsider’s perspective.
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