Arizona Diamondbacks receive high praise for Day 1 picks in 2022 MLB Draft
The Arizona Diamondbacks made three selections on Day 1 of the 2022 MLB Draft on Sunday.
The D-backs picked high school outfielder Druw Jones No. 2 overall, Mississippi right-handed pitcher Landon Sims No. 34 overall and Texas first baseman Ivan Melendez No. 43 overall.
Druw Jones is the son of 10-time Gold Glover Andruw Jones while Melendez won the 2022 Golden Spikes Award for the best player in college baseball.
Now that the dust has settled following the first two days, the Diamondbacks are receiving high praise for their Day 1 selections:
OF Druw Jones, Wesleyan School (Georgia) — Round 1, pick No. 2
Bleacher Report‘s Joel Reuter: A+
“Druw Jones does everything well with ample projection left in numerous facets of his game, most notably his power potential with room to grow into his 6’4″, 180-pound frame. While he’s far from a finished product offensively, there’s a lot to like, and he makes hard contact. Aside from his bat, he has 70-grade speed and an elite glove in center field where his bloodlines are perhaps most evident as the son of 10-time Gold Glove winner Andruw Jones. He has some things to smooth out with his swing, and his power ceiling is still in question, but all signs point to a future as an All-Star center fielder.”
FanSided‘s Mark Powell: A+
“Jones is ranked the top player in this draft class by several databases, and for good reason. The son of Andruw Jones was the easy choice in terms of best player available, and the Diamondbacks went that route. Jones had the highest ceiling of any player available at this point.”
CBS Sports‘ R.J. Anderson & Mike Axisa: A
“Jones came into the summer ranked by CBS Sports as the No. 1 prospect in the class. He was the preferred choice of the industry sources who spoke to CBS Sports, too. The Diamondbacks, then, have to be pleased to land him at No. 2. A fully actualized Jones could feature five plus or better tools, including a good glove in center field.”
Sporting News‘ Edward Sutelan: A
“Some expected Jones to go first overall. Most prospect lists had him as the top pick in the class. While his hit tool isn’t as refined as Holliday’s, the rest of the package in center field is more explosive. He has plenty of raw power and his speed is among the best in the high-school class. His defense is already nearly MLB-ready, and his tools often receive future Gold Glove grades. A true five-tool talent for the Diamondbacks.”
RHP Landon Sims, Mississippi State — Balance Round A, pick No. 34
Bleacher Report: A
“Landon Sims was one of the best relievers in the country in 2021, nailing down 13 saves while going 5-0 with a 1.44 ERA, 0.78 WHIP and 100 strikeouts in 56.1 innings. He moved into the starting rotation this spring and lasted three starts before blowing out his elbow and undergoing Tommy John surgery in March. His upper 90s fastball and wipeout slider would play at the back of an MLB bullpen right now, but with a strong 6’2″, 227-pound frame and clean mechanics, he has starter potential if he can refine his changeup and avoid further arm issues.”
1B Ivan Melendez, Texas — Round 2, pick No. 43
Bleacher Report: B+
“The 2022 Golden Spikes winner, Ivan Melendez annihilated collegiate pitching to the tune of a .387/.508/.863 line with a Division I-leading 32 home runs and 94 RBI in 67 games this spring while tallying more walks (52) than strikeouts (51). However, his profile as a right-handed-hitting, first-base-only prospect is among the riskiest of any draft candidate, and the fact that he is already 22 years old also works against him. He could be the next Pete Alonso or another in a long line of college sluggers with a similar profile who failed to make the leap to pro ball.”