The MLB Draft started last night. The Braves, with three picks in the first two rounds, took three non-pitchers. The Braves seem to be set on their pitching, as of now and are ready to focus on the position players. Let’s meet the newest members of the Braves organization.
1st Round, 9th Overall: Shea Langeliers, C, Baylor
This move addresses a position that the Braves are thin in throughout the entire organization. Wilson Contreras and Alex Jackson are in the minor league system, as of now, with Tyler Flowers and Brian McCann with the Braves to bridge the gap to whoever will take over the catchers position for the long term. Drafting Langeliers this high is more about his defense, regarded as the best defensive catcher in the draft, and less about his bat, which is said to have the potential to be an above-average batter. “This is a long-term investment,” according to Dana Brown, Braves VP of Scouting.
1st Round, 21st Overall: Braden Shewmake, IF, Texas A&M
Shewmake was a shortstop while at Texas A&M and was named SEC Freshman of the Year in 2017. Shewmake isn’t known for his power, but is a consistent bat, hitting over .300 all three years in college. Scouts believe Shewmake will be able to become more of a power hitter in the majors with his 6’4, 190-pound frame. As of now, Shewmake is a guy who doesn’t strike out a lot or walks a lot but can put the bat on the ball better than most of the hitters in this draft, according to scouts. With Dansby Swanson manning shortstop for the Braves, Shewmake will have time to grow and develop into a player who can be the shortstop of the future.
2nd Round, 60th Overall: Beau Philip, IF, Oregon State
According to scouts and big boards, not many expected Philip to come off the board this early. Philip, according to reports, is an above-average runner and below-average hitter. Philip was a shortstop while at Oregon State, but may be moving to second base to get more chances at playing. This seems like a reach by all opinions, but the Braves must have seen something they liked in Beau Philip. Philip will be a project so don’t expect to see him with the Braves anytime soon.
The draft continues for the Braves tonight. It seems like the Braves have moved away from prep arms and is now investing in college-level players who can contribute to the team sooner than later. This draft has the fingerprints of Dana Brown all over it with the emphasis of college players being taken. We, most likely, won’t be seeing any of these guys soon, but without a doubt, these guys are the future of the Braves, whenever that comes.