The 2021 MLB Draft is on Sunday, and it’ll feel back to its normal ways after a virtual event last year hosted just five rounds.
For the Giants organization, having president of baseball operations Farhan Zaidi at the forefront of it will bring in a lot of young talent, but it’ll still be interesting to see how he navigates. Especially with this draft class.
Zaidi said the Giants organization is deep on the position player side, but just like all teams, there’s one area they are looking to capitalize on.
“You always want to get more pitching in the pipeline, so that’s something that we’ve talked about, but you just want the best talent,” Zaidi told KNBR’s ‘Tolbert, Krueger and Brooks' on Thursday.
“It’s probably one of the drafts where a lot of these dynamics are more than certain than they have been in the past,” he added. “We just had a really short draft in 2020, a five-round draft, a lot of guys that usually would’ve been drafted would have been playing, would have gone back to school, done an extra year of eligibility, so you got everything from an extra year of quote- unquote -- redshirt juniors to Will Bednar, the pitcher who did so well for Missippi State in the College World Series, is actually a redshirt freshman, but he’s an age-eligible kind of second-year player.”
Last year’s shortened college season also will add to the difficulties of deciding on what the team plans to do. The other dynamics Zaidi refers to are some of those prospects who are considered two-sport players. The decisions are more clear for those players than in the past, he said.
While Zaidi has shown he’s capable of finding these diamonds in the rough, as NBC Sports Bay Area’s Dalton Johnson pointed out, the No. 14 overall pick for the Giants could go anywhere.
“You’ve got a wide-range sort of experience based on what happened last year and the dynamic as far as the signing bonuses that the guys are going to be looking for, what kind of leverage they’re going to have -- that’s just the college players, then you throw in the high school players, some of these two-sport guys as well, I think like a lot of teams we’re sorta sorting through to try and figure out the right kind of strategy.”
In his first two drafts as part of the Giants organization, Zaidi went with two college bats in Hunter Bishop and Patrick Bailey in the first round.
Who knows what will happen this time around.