It is becoming more and more of a rarity in today’s game that a team drafts a player because of a need at the MLB level. But this year I wouldn’t be surprised to see the Mariners do just that.
A left-handed pitcher with two plus pitches may be suited ideally for the Mariners presently and in the future. If Shane McClanahan is still around by the 14th overall pick, there is no way he should be available by the 15th pick.
Shane McClanahan’s been known to have a blazing fastball which can touch the upper 90’s, but recently his change-up has been getting plenty of praise. The man who is ranked 14th overall on MLB.com’s draft board was given a 70-grade fastball and a 60-grade change-up from draft experts Jonathan Mayo and Jim Callis.
Scouts who have seen him pitch, believe he has the ability to start. But with only two plus pitches he may be best suited in the bullpen.
Some might wonder why I believe he is a fit for Seattle if there’s an uncertain view of where he may wind up, my reasoning is, he could impact the team as early as this year.
Like fellow left-hander Brandon Finnegan, McClanahan could help a postseason-caliber team achieve their hopes in the 2018 season. Finnegan was a pivotal contributor to the Kansas City Royals late success in 2014.
The two players are comparable in the fact that both have struggled with command. But man can they both could light up a radar gun.
But with both players having long arm swings out back, most of the time your trading velocity for command. And that appears to be the case here.
For fans who want the Mariners to fix their current rotation troubles this season in the draft, don’t expect it. It’s a rarity that a just drafted player will be ready to impact a club in a rotation the same year. The best bet for the Mariners is to keep building their already strong pen into a powerhouse. Like the Royals did four years ago.
McClanahan is a fit for that very reason. And he could very well be Seattle’s, Brandon Finnegan.