With the bulk of their top prospects in the outfield, the Angels could try for pitching help in the 2020 MLB Draft. They have four picks, including 10th overall in the first round.
In Keith Law’s mock draft at The Athletic, he projects the Angels to select Max Meyer, a right-handed pitcher from the University of Minnesota. Law, who ranked Meyer the sixth-best prospect in the draft, said the right-hander “has upper 90s velocity with the best slider in the draft, and if there is an MLB season this year he could be a candidate to go into someone’s bullpen this summer or fall, or at least serve on a taxi squad to come in as a replacement when a pitcher gets hurt.”
Meyer was a preseason All-American as a junior in 2020, and in three years at Minnesota posted a 2.07 ERA with 187 strikeouts in 148 innings. In just four starts in this shortened season, he posted a 1.95 ERA with 46 strikeouts in 27⅔ innings.
Praise for Meyer’s pure stuff abounds. Baseball America ranked him as the 10th-best prospect in this draft, noting, “If you’re looking for the best pure stuff in the 2020 draft class, Max Meyer might be your guy.”
MLB.com rated Meyer the eighth-best prospect, calling his slider the best in the draft, “a wipeout 87-91 mph offering with which he can add and subtract depth.”
He switched from closer to starter for the Gophers during his sophomore season, but still uses the same philosophy as a starter. “I’m still trying to blow guys away,” Meyer told Dane Mizutani at the St. Paul Pioneer Press. “That’s always going to be my mentality. I haven’t really changed what I think about when I’m out there. Just trying to get the guy out with my best stuff.”
The Twins drafted the local kid Meyer out of Woodbury High School in the 34th round in 2017, though he did not sign. The 10th overall pick in the draft this year has a bonus slot value of $4,739,900.