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2021 MLB Draft Preview: FSU baseball to have busy three days

Matheu Nelson leads the way in a large group of potential pro ‘Noles.

Ken Lanese/FSU sports information

Florida State baseball is in store for a busy three days starting on Sunday evening. The 2021 MLB Draft begins tonight and the Seminoles have 19 draft eligible players on roster. The ‘Noles also have some high-ranked prospects in their top-10 recruiting class that could hear their names called over the next three days. After a five-round draft last year, the draft has been expanded to 20 rounds this year. Let’s take a look at what could be in store over the next three days for FSU.

Where: Denver, Colorado

First 36 picks: Sunday at 7:00 PM, MLBNetwork

Rounds 2-10: Monday at 1:00 PM,

Rounds 11-20: Tuesday at 12:00 PM,

Draft eligible players on roster with eligibility remaining

Tyler Ahearn

Jonah Scolaro

Hunter Perdue

Kyle McMullen

Reese Albert

Jackson Greene

Conor Grady

Logan Lacey

Davis Hare

Isaiah Perry

Garrett Mathes

Elijah Cabell*

Robby Martin*

Colton Vincent*

Jack Anderson*

Matheu Nelson*

*- Two years of eligibility remaining

Draft eligible players on roster with no eligibility remaining

Chase Haney

Nico Baldor

Clayton Kwiatkowski

2021 recruiting class

Edwin Arroyo, SS, PR

Jackson Baumeister, RHP, FL

James Tibbs III, OF, GA

Mitchell Bratt, LHP, ON

Mayes White, SS, AL

Satchell Norman, C, FL

Brodie Chestnutt, RHP, GA

Dylan Jacobs, RHP, FL

Jaime Ferrer, C, FL

Treyton Rank, SS, GA

Preston Wetherell, RHP, FL

Cade Bush, 1B, FL

Lee Houston Evans, OF, AL

Aiden Mastantuno, 1B, FL

Connor Moore, SS, FL

Conner Whittaker, RHP, FL

Brett Roberts, MIF, GA*

Dylan Strickland, 1B, GA**

Joseph Charles, RHP, FL**

*- Non-draft eligible Transfer

**- Draft eligible transfer

Here are the current Seminoles you should be looking at in the 2021 draft:

Matheu Nelson

Nelson entered the 2021 season as an underrated prospect, but quickly turned heads with a breakout in power. Not only did Nelson’s power flourish, his defense and athleticism also took major steps forward after a large weight drop. Outside of Louisville’s Henry Davis, who is expected to go in the top five picks, it’s hard to find a more complete draft-eligible catcher from the college ranks. The ACC Player of the Year has a bazooka behind the plate and an imposing presence in the box. Nelson can stick behind the plate in the pros and the power plays at any level.

Prediction: Late first-late second round

Elijah Cabell

Cabell is the mystery of the draft, not just from Florida State, but the whole college board. The Florida native has as much power as anyone in the draft, but the extreme swing-and-miss rate make it hard to pinpoint where teams will take a chance on him. Cabell has the arm to stick in a corner outfield position and has superstar potential if the swing-and-miss rates decrease.

Prediction: Sixth to eighth rounds

Robby Martin

Martin had a long slump in 2021 that hurt his numbers and draft stock, but a drop in average was also paired with an increase in power. Ever since getting to Tallahassee, the hit-tool was obvious. This season, he proved he can hit the long ball with consistency and also play outfield at a decent level. I wouldn’t expect Martin to slip very far into day two.

Prediction: fourth to sixth rounds

Hunter Perdue

Perdue has eye-popping stuff that no scout can ignore when they watch him. The right-handed pitcher was up to 100 MPH this season and sits in the upper 90’s. He also can spin a hammer curveball and has a projectable frame. I would expect Perdue to be an under-the-radar prospect that goes much higher than people think.

Prediction: Fifth to seventh rounds

Jack Anderson

Anderson is a prospect that saw his stock rise quickly over the last calendar year. An increase in velo saw a rise on draft boards. He showed this year that he can be dominant in the backend of the pen. He showed in high school that he has the durability to be a starter. Anderson likely projects as a starter at the next level and still has room to fill to his frame and add onto his low-90’s fastball. The right-handed pitcher seems like a can’t-miss prospect midway through day two. If Anderson were to slip, he has an extra year of leverage that I wouldn’t be shocked to see him use.

Prediction: sixth to eighth rounds

Conor Grady

Like Anderson, Grady also saw an uptick in velocity this season. The right-handed pitcher can start at the next level, but may move into a reliever role like early in his career at FSU. The pitchability that Grady has is hard to come by. The Tampa native has three pitches that he can throw for strikes and swing-and-misses. I would watch for Grady’s name to come off the board late on day two or early day three.

Prediction: 10th-12th rounds

Tyler Ahearn

Ahearn has had dynamite stuff ever since he stepped on campus, but also had command issues. In the last two seasons, he’s reeled in the command issues and been able to show off the stuff. With a sinking fastball that can run into the mid to high-90’s and a hard slider, I’d expect to hear Ahearn’s name called.

Prediction: 10th-12th rounds

Reese Albert

Albert is a unique scenario. The outfielder wasn’t seen much the last two years due to injury and struggled when he played. But Albert has always possessed the tools to be a professional player. Coming off the injuries, teams may stay away from Albert in the draft. Despite that, I would expect him to sign professionally as he’s already graduated from Florida State.

Prediction: Signs un-drafted

Logan Lacey

Lacey is an under-appreciated prospect. The third baseman showed this year that he can play multiple positions at a high level while hitting for average and power. The tools suggest he should be drafted, but he lacks the size that some scouts are looking for and doesn’t play a premium position. The Tallahassee native may decide to come back for an extra year at his hometown school if he doesn’t get the money he’s looking for. Getting Lacey back would be a major win for the Seminoles.

Prediction: 15th-20th rounds, could come back

Davis Hare, Jonah Scolaro

Hare and Scolaro, despite being opposite types of pitchers, are likely in the same boat going into the draft. Both could be late day three picks if they wanted, but both could also be key pieces, and veteran leaders, to the FSU bullpen in 2022.

Prediction: 18th-20th rounds for both, could come back

Here are potential future Seminoles you should be looking at in the 2021 draft:

Edwin Arroyo

Arroyo is the Seminoles’ top commit and has been a rising prospect as of late. The shortstop is a potential five-tool player and possesses power from both sides of the plate. He also runs above average times and can throw 96 MPH across the infield. Being at a premium position and coming off a strong spring, Arroyo will likely get the money he’s looking for.

Prediction: Drafted early on day two

Jackson Baumeister

Baumeister was as good as any prep pitching prospect this spring. He posted a 0.63 ERA and 145 K’s and was named an All-American. The RHP runs his fastball into the mid-90’s with ease and also has command of his fastball and curveball. Baumeister is projected to go as early as the second round. But the Florida native has been on campus for nearly a whole month now around his classmates and didn’t participate in any pre-draft combines. Going into day one, I’m slightly leaning towards Baumeister making it to campus.

Prediction: Makes it to campus

James Tibbs

Tibbs also saw a major rise on boards this spring. The outfielder possesses a unique combo of raw power and speed. Tibbs would likely be a 3-4 round draft pick, but he could also be a day-one starter at FSU. The Seminoles will likely have three brand new starters in the outfield in 2022. With the openings in the outfield and his ties to FSU, I’m leaning towards Tibbs also making it to campus.

Prediction: Makes it to campus

Mitchell Bratt

Bratt didn’t get much attention during the spring as the Canadian product couldn’t play any games due to Canada’s Covid-19 protocols. But Bratt has turned heads at the MLB Draft League this summer. Against other top prospects, Bratt has compiled a 2.56 ERA and struck out 44 batters in 28 innings. After catching scouts’ eyes in recent weeks and with Bratt being just 17, I’d expect a team to make a good offer on day two.

Prediction: Drafted mid-day two

Satchell Norman

Norman has also had lots of eyes on him recently. The catcher took part in the MLB’s first ever draft combine just a couple weeks ago. Norman is one of the top defensive catchers in the prep class. At a premium position and with his defensive skills, Norman could hear his name on day two.

Prediction: Drafted late day two-early day three

FSU was active early on this offseason in the portal, but have been quieter over the past couple weeks. I’d expect in the coming days and weeks after the draft for them to make noise again, once they know the openings created from the draft. With the draft a whole month later this season, it’s made it tougher on colleges to get a full grasp on their rosters heading into the next season. Here is the list of FSU players from the 2021 roster who have entered the portal:

Players from 2021 roster in transfer portal

Leighton Alley

Danny Andzel

Casey Asman

Nander De Sedas

Richie Morales

Ryan Romano

Chris Ruckdeschel

Dylan Simmons