MLB Pitching Prospect Draft For 2023

MLB Pitching Prospect Draft For 2023

This article is part of our Farm Futures series.

On Wednesday's Prospect Podcast, I conducted an eight-round, three-person snake draft of currently-eligible pitching prospects for 2023 draft-and-hold value only. Last week was the hitting prospect draft, which you can find here.

My two guests this week were Eric Cross and Chris Clegg from Fantrax.

You can listen to the RotoWire Prospect Podcast or subscribe on your podcast app by searching "RotoWire Prospect Podcast".

Here are the draft results:

 Eric CrossChris CleggJames Anderson
1 ->Grayson RodriguezHunter BrownAndrew Painter
2 <-Taj BradleyBrayan BelloRicky Tiedemann
3 ->Kyle HarrisonCody MorrisKyle Muller
4 <-Bobby MillerCade CavalliRyan Pepiot
5 ->Ken WaldichukHayden WesneskiBrandon Pfaadt
6 <-Gavin StoneEury PerezGavin Williams
7 ->Ryne NelsonLouie VarlandFreddy Tarnok
8 <-Sixto SanchezDrey JamesonRobert Gasser

Here was the rough top 15 I was working off of:

1Grayson Rodriguez
2Andrew Painter
3Hunter Brown
4Ricky Tiedemann
5Kyle Muller
6Brayan Bello
7Cody Morris
8Ryan Pepiot
9Taj Bradley
10Hayden Wesneski
11Brandon Pfaadt
12Gavin Williams
13Cade Cavalli
14Eury Perez
15Kyle Harrison

Here were my best of the rest:

Louie VarlandKen Waldichuk
Gavin StoneTanner Bibee
Bobby MillerFreddy Tarnok
Reese OlsonRobert Gasser
Ryne NelsonChase Silseth
DL HallCaleb Kilian
Mike BurrowsDrey Jameson
Matthew LiberatoreLuis Ortiz

With pitching prospects, success in the majors and/or proximity to the majors is a critical

On Wednesday's Prospect Podcast, I conducted an eight-round, three-person snake draft of currently-eligible pitching prospects for 2023 draft-and-hold value only. Last week was the hitting prospect draft, which you can find here.

My two guests this week were Eric Cross and Chris Clegg from Fantrax.

You can listen to the RotoWire Prospect Podcast or subscribe on your podcast app by searching "RotoWire Prospect Podcast".

Here are the draft results:

 Eric CrossChris CleggJames Anderson
1 ->Grayson RodriguezHunter BrownAndrew Painter
2 <-Taj BradleyBrayan BelloRicky Tiedemann
3 ->Kyle HarrisonCody MorrisKyle Muller
4 <-Bobby MillerCade CavalliRyan Pepiot
5 ->Ken WaldichukHayden WesneskiBrandon Pfaadt
6 <-Gavin StoneEury PerezGavin Williams
7 ->Ryne NelsonLouie VarlandFreddy Tarnok
8 <-Sixto SanchezDrey JamesonRobert Gasser

Here was the rough top 15 I was working off of:

1Grayson Rodriguez
2Andrew Painter
3Hunter Brown
4Ricky Tiedemann
5Kyle Muller
6Brayan Bello
7Cody Morris
8Ryan Pepiot
9Taj Bradley
10Hayden Wesneski
11Brandon Pfaadt
12Gavin Williams
13Cade Cavalli
14Eury Perez
15Kyle Harrison

Here were my best of the rest:

Louie VarlandKen Waldichuk
Gavin StoneTanner Bibee
Bobby MillerFreddy Tarnok
Reese OlsonRobert Gasser
Ryne NelsonChase Silseth
DL HallCaleb Kilian
Mike BurrowsDrey Jameson
Matthew LiberatoreLuis Ortiz

With pitching prospects, success in the majors and/or proximity to the majors is a critical element in my redraft valuation. If a pitching prospect is unlikely to debut until the middle of the summer, the odds of them being both healthy and deserving of a promotion are pretty slim.

As we note on the podcast, this is not going to be a loaded crop of pitching prospects to take fliers on in draft-and-hold leagues -- not that such a thing ever exists. Undoubtedly, some of the pitchers we selected will provide significant fantasy value next season, but I'd guess that two-thirds of the pitchers we selected will provide minimal value as rookies. 

I feel really good about Andrew Painter playing a major role with the Phillies for most of next season, health permitting. However, I already regret taking Ricky Tiedemann over Brayan Bello, just due to the fact Bello is obviously a better bet for 20-plus MLB starts next year and he's come on of late. The Tiedemann side could still prevail if he stays healthy and the Blue Jays give him the Alek Manoah treatment from 2021, which I think is likely if he pitches to his potential in the spring.

With Hunter Brown, Kyle Muller, Brayan Bello, Cody Morris and Ryan Pepiot, we have five starters with high-end stuff and MLB experience whose command and control will determine whether 2023 is their breakout year in the big leagues. That said, Bello is the only one who I think is a near-lock to break camp in his team's starting rotation (if healthy), given those five organizational depth charts.

I would love it if Grayson Rodriguez, Morris, Cade Cavalli and Daniel Espino are able to go to the Arizona Fall League to build up their innings after dealing with injuries this season. The main concern with Rodriguez is how many innings he will throw in the majors next year, as he has thrown just 62 innings so far this season. If he can get up to around 80 by the end of the fall, that would give me more confidence in projecting him for around 120 innings in the majors. One thing I love about Brandon Pfaadt is that he has thrown a minor-league leading 155.1 innings this year and is seemingly ready to compete for a rotation spot in Diamondbacks spring training.

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
James Anderson
James Anderson is RotoWire's Lead Prospect Analyst, Assistant Baseball Editor, and co-host of Farm Fridays on Sirius/XM radio and the RotoWire Prospect Podcast.
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