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FanGraphs projects third baseman Brayden Taylor to Athletics in first mock draft

Mock Draft season continues!

2021 State Farm College Baseball Showdown Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images

The 2023 MLB Draft will get underway this Sunday and the Oakland Athletics hold the No. 6 pick in the first round. The A’s have been linked to several college bats in the lead up to the draft. With that in mind, FanGraphs’ prospect writer Eric Longenhagen projects TCU third baseman Brayden Taylor to Oakland in his first mock draft of the season.

Longenhagen mentions that Virginia catcher Kyle Teel is also a possibility and he was linked heavily to Oakland early on. He cites some buzz coming out of the draft combine for his reasoning in going with Taylor.

If Minnesota doesn’t take one of the high school outfielders, I suppose it’s possible either could go here, though most industry rumors have the A’s on college bats like Taylor (strong buzz on that at the Combine) and Virginia catcher Kyle Teel, with Wake Forest righty Rhett Lowder also in the mix. If a high school outfielder is still on the board here, it might take an over-slot bonus to get a deal done, and if the number is high enough that it paints Oakland into a corner with their next two picks, it’s possible they blink and let Clark or Jenkins go by because they badly need depth in their system. A college guy here and two abnormally good high schoolers at 39 and 41 (thanks to the depth of the draft) feels better than an over-slot deal with Clark and at least one college guy later.

Taylor put up strong offensive numbers in 2023 for TCU hitting .308/.430/.631 with 23 home runs in 321 plate appearances. Baseball America lists him as their 16th best prospect in their Top 500 draft prospects.