Texas Rangers 2015 MLB Draft Preview

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With the fourth overall pick, John Manuel selects starting pitcher Dillon Tate of UC Santa Barbara for the Rangers. Manuel’s thinking is along the same lines as McDaniel as he also selects a college pitcher with three years of experience. In his first year as a starter, Tate has an 8-4 record with a 2.08 ERA in 95.1 innings. Tate has pitched over twice as many innings as he did in 2014 and has responded with more success than he has as a sophomore. While many pitchers are moved to the bullpen due to control problems, the opposite was true for Tate. After Tate moved to the rotation, his walk rate dropped by nearly a walk and struck out just 0.11 less batters per nine innings. Manuel notes that the Rangers could look to add a shortstop such as Brendan Rogers, a high school player from Florida.

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Like Funkhouser, Tate could prove to be a valuable piece to the rotation that could join the team within a short timeframe. While he likely would not be ready as quickly as Funkhouser due to less experience as a starter, this could work as an advantage for Tate. A common problem that teams see with college pitchers is that they are overused by their coaches and are worried they risk drafting a pitcher with a lot of innings under his belt with a higher risk of injury. If Tate falls to fourth overall, it will be tough for the Rangers to pass on the opportunity to draft him.

Check out the rest of Manuel’s mock draft here.

Next: Final Thoughts