The Chicago White Sox are projected to select Mississippi State pitcher Chris Stratton with the 13th overall pick in the latest mock draft from MLB.com analyst Jonathan Mayo. Most mock drafts this year have the White Sox focused on landing pitching, but Mayo does note that Kenny Williams and company could surprise with their first pick.
Here's what Mayo wrote about Stratton:
The White Sox might have an interest in a high school bat like that of [Texas prep outfielder Courtney] Hawkins, but they tend to go for college pitching early. Stratton figures to be the best one still on the board and they scouted him closely down the stretch.
Over 96 innings with Mississippi State this year, Stratton has a 2.16 ERA with 115 strikeouts and just 19 walks. Here's a quick description of Stratton's stuff from ESPN (full scouting report is Insider-only):
Stratton flashes three above-average to plus pitches with a chance for solid-average command and a near ideal, projectable frame. He will work with a 91-94 mph fastball that can get up to 96 and will show occasional life with good command to both sides of the plate.
Even though he wasn't even drafted out of high school, Stratton has emerged as one of the elite pitchers in the difficult SEC. Given the weakness of Chicago's farm system, their first pick will become one of the team's top prospects immediately upon signing.
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