Week Three of the Mock Draft Army consisted of five mocks with special editions on Sunday and Monday as a prep for the fantasy industry league The Great Fantasy Baseball Invitational.  Before we get into our review I’d like to remind everyone that if you sign up for one of our mocks to arrive in the draft room at least 5 minutes ahead of the draft time. Also if you cannot make the draft, send me an email at mockdraftarmyandy@gmail.com as early as possible. There were several mocks this week where we had several no shows. 

We have to start off by wishing our four-star general and founder Howard Bender a get well soon. If you haven’t heard, Howard broke his foot while participating in Monday’s mock. As he was gathering his dogs, Howard heard the signal on his computer that it was his turn to pick and mis-stepped, injuring his foot. As the new general, I feel partly responsible for not leading him down the correct path to his laptop and if I had planned better, he would have had a different draft slot changing the timing of that fateful signal. The one thing we did learn is that Howard is as tough as Lenny Dykstra. I mean this guy is nails and didn’t miss a minute of work.  We thank team Vicodin for that.

Now that spring training games have started have we seen any players move up or down draft boards over the last week and is the Army following suit?  Let’s take a look at the Astros players and see how much, if at all, the cheating scandal is affecting their draft positions. Alex Bregman has seen his ADP over the last month go from 10th to 15th in the NFBC. In the two 15-round TGFBI mocks he went 9th and 10th but in the 12-and-10-team mocks he was taken at 11, 12 and 18. The Army has followed suit in regards to Bregman. Altuve had a slight drop from 33rd to 37th and the Army had its ADP at 35. George Springer must be a darling of the Mock Draft Army as he was taken ahead of his NFBC ADP in every mock. I was the stop gap in the two 15-team mocks as I took him at pick 42 in both. He went as early as 28th in one of the other three.  Yordan Alvarez was not on the team in 2017 and does not appear to be affected by the scandal in regard to his draft status. Carlos Correa fell to 104 from 96 and Yuli Gurriel to 140 from 122.  There was no consistency with the Army and they were both taken in the range of their two values. Overall there is a slight downgrade on the Astros hitters, but nothing to the extent that you’ll be getting a bargain. There will be pressure on these players to perform but you have no idea the extent of how it will affect them. I took Springer in TGFBI as I don’t think this will downgrade them much. At some point if they do become bargains and one falls to you, you shouldn’t hesitate to take them. 

One of the questions of the offseason was who will be the Braves closer as they had Mark Melancon and then signed Will Smith who did an excellent job with the Giants last year. The mocks this week were clearly in favor of Smith winning the job as he was taken ahead of Melancon every time. Over the last month the NFBC has Smith at 159 and Melancon at 223. The Army is right in step with the belief that Smith will win the job. 

We’ve had injury news on Luis Severino , Giancarlo Stanton , Griffin Canning , and Stephen Piscotty . Severino is an obvious deletion from your rankings and Canning may be heading there too. Stanton may or may not be out too much past opening day, as we saw Francisco Lindor come back from a similar injury last year. Stanton was a fifth-round pick in all the mocks this week except the last one on Thursday where he fell to the 11th round. This could be a potential bargain but his history is scaring some people. We are also hearing some news on Aaron Judge but nothing definitive. With this along with the Stanton news I’d expect to see Miguel Andújar ’s stock rise substantially especially if there is a long-term injury to Judge. Piscotty’s injury appears to be one that may keep him out for a while so take that into consideration although his ADP was low and in shallower leagues it may not matter. 

On the positive side of injury news we found out that Eugenio Suárez has started to throw and could be ready for opening day. His ADP has remained pretty consistent with the Army being taken between the 4th and 6th rounds. James Paxton may start throwing next week keeping him on the earlier side of his estimated return date. He continues to be taken late with a range between the 16th and 20th rounds and this is probably where he’ll stay unless we hear something that changes his estimated return. Mike Clevinger will begin throwing this week and this will allow him to come back no later than the end of April and maybe sooner. Clevinger who was easily a second-round pick before the injury has now fallen only slightly to the late 2nd to early 4thround. 

The Army had a rough week with Howard’s injury and a flurry of no shows, but the march towards opening day and draft domination continues. Hopefully you’re joining us this week and we can see where the latest news takes us. Always available on twitter @gasdoc_spit and via email at mockdraftarmyandy@gmail.com.