Will the Miami Marlins make the same kind of impact in the MLB Draft as they have the previous two seasons?
Over the past two seasons, the Miami Marlins have been able to take advantage of high picks to land solid prospects in the MLB Draft. This year is a little different. And because of the shortage of picks and the importance of getting each one right, this could be the most important draft class of the Derek Jeter era in Miami.
Everything the team does this week will depend on the cards D.J. Svihlik, the team’s director of amateur scouting, plays.
"“We’re not going to be able to introduce the volume of players,” Marlins director of amateur scouting Svihlik said via MLB.com. “But I have a lot of confidence that we’re going to introduce at least as much impactful talent over those six players, and hopefully, there’s a few [more] players.”"
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The Marlins have six picks to play with – the third overall selection, and then including the third overall, second round (40th overall), Competitive Balance Round B (61st), third round (75th), fourth round (104th) and fifth-round (134). It makes for an exciting time once again in South Florida as the front office hopes to build on last year’s group which included outfielders JJ Bleday, Kam Misner, and Peyton Burdick and high school shortstop Nassim Nunez.
With the team’s improvements in the minor league system, adding more pieces to a balanced puzzle will help the Marlins continue to grow.
In his first year as the team’s CEO, Derek Jeter used the Draft to locate young arms to build around and then filled in gaps up the middle for depth. Last season was about more mature hitters who could develop at a faster pace through the minors. These two game plans now give the front office more options in this year’s talent selection. Because of numbers and success, Miami can afford to look at the “best player available” scenario and not miss a beat.
"“The 2020 class is really strong,” Svihlik said. “I’m excited about what’s going to come in, even though we won’t be able to introduce the volume that we did in previous years.”"
The Marlins started the process of rebuilding not only the Major League roster but the farm system once Jeter took over the day-to-day operations of the team. The former ownership group and management traded away prospects and got little in return. By trading away popular veterans – we aren’t going to mention them – the minor leagues are full of potential MLB stars. The Miami Marlins roster this season will benefit from those moves, regardless of how unpopular they may have been before the 2018 season.
As Svihlik explains, the process is about getting the best players with all the picks the team has this week.
"“One thing we talk about is a broader portfolio approach,” Svihlik said. “Everybody wants to talk about the first pick, and I certainly understand that; I’ve done this a long time. But when we look at our Drafts, we want to bring in a group of players that when you sit back and you look at the whole body … it’s not all about just about one player.”"
How to Watch the MLB Draft: Per MLB.com, Day 1 of the 2020 Draft airs on Wednesday, June 10, on MLB Network and ESPN at 7 p.m. ET, and includes the first 37 picks. Day 2 begins at 5 p.m. ET on Thursday, June 11, on MLB Network and ESPN2, and spans the remainder of the 160 picks.