The Major League Baseball first year player draft is a bit over a month away, and mock drafts are starting to come at us more frequently. This edition is from Kiley McDaniel at ESPN, who has the Braves taking Arizona’s Chase Davis at 24th overall. Davis is a strong outfielder with the potential to hit for power, but taking in the first round could be a bit of a reach. The biggest concern for Davis is a long swing which has given him some trouble in college with his hit tool and creates an obvious concern as he faces better velocity. His exit velocities and raw power are elite and he has begun to tap into that power more recently with 21 home runs this year. Defensively he is likely to be a corner outfielder, which further limits his ceiling. Still it’s an intriguing bat and would add to a system desperately in need of a high end offensive talent.
Davis checks in as Baseball America’s 33rd best draft prospect and ranks 39th from MLB pipeline. Going four picks after Davis is prep shortstop Walker Martin, who has also been mocked to the Braves in the past. The Braves have a compensation pick at 70th overall due to losing Dansby Swanson, but that doesn’t boost their overall bonus pool much. They still sit with the 22nd overall bonus pool in the major league’s at $8,341,700 so it should be expected that they try to spread that money out over a handful of prospects rather than shooting big early.