The Los Angeles Angels — and new general manager Perry Minasian — hold the No. 9 overall pick in the 2021 MLB Draft. This gives them a real chance to land a top prospect that could be a future solution to a number of needs they currently have.
The Angels have been all over the place in terms of which prospects they could be linked to. They have done a good job keeping their strategy under wraps, as they find themselves in a draft position where any number of massively talented players could fall to them.
Minasian gave some insight into what he’s looking for with his first-round selection, and why it’s a little more complicated than just pitching or position players, according to Rhett Bollinger of MLB.com:
“I’m not very philosophical when it comes to those things, I’m about doing the work,” Minasian said. “We’re looking for quality individuals with talent. Baseball players that love the game, that think about the game, that commit themselves to the game. That’s basically what we’re looking for. Now whether that’ll be on the mound or certain positions, we’ll take each individual player and we’ll be as thorough as we can.”
Even though Minasian is being intentionally vague with where he’s leaning, it’s impossible to ignore his draft history. He has been involved in 13 MLB Drafts during his time with the Toronto Blue Jays and Atlanta Braves, and in all 13, a pitcher was selected in the first round.
“I mean, you always need pitching,” Minasian said. “And I think every organization never feels like they have enough pitching. So that’s something we’ll always be looking to acquire. But there’s not necessarily a philosophy where we’re picking pitchers early and position players late. I know it sounds simple, but it’s do the work, and take each individual player and do as much background as you can.”
Among the pitchers the Angels have been linked to are University of Texas right-hander Ty Madden, prep right-hander Jackson Jobe, two-way shortstop and pitcher Bubba Chandler, and potentially Vanderbilt right-hander Kumar Rocker, should he fall to No. 9 the way some suggest he could.
The first round of the MLB Draft takes place this Sunday, July 11, and will air on ESPN and MLB Network at 4:00 p.m. PT. Rounds 2-10 will take place the following day — Monday, July 12 — at 10 a.m. PT, and Day 3 involving rounds 11-20 will be at 9:00 a.m. PT on Tuesday.
Shohei Ohtani could develop into an ace, according to Max Scherzer
While the Angels could very well be looking for a future ace in this year’s draft, Max Scherzer of the Washington Nationals believes they may already have that player. Shohei Ohtani has all the makings of an ace on the mound — while also leading MLB in home runs — and he may be just a short time away from unlocking his best stuff as a pitcher.