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The Giants take high school right-hander Ethan Hankins in Baseball America’s first 2018 mock draft

He can throw baseballs well, people.

Let’s set some ground rules: Mock drafts nine months before the actual draft are useless. In March, 2006, Tim Lincecum wasn’t listed in Baseball America’s first mock draft. By May’s mock draft, he went a pick before the Giants drafted. The difference was two months of pitching, which meant two months of scouts getting a look at peak Tim Lincecum. He was impressive, obviously. The mock and actual drafts changed.

The Giants are projected by Baseball America to take Ethan Hankins with the second-overall pick in June’s MLB Draft. They will probably take someone different, just because of the odds. And someone who isn’t on this list will be a fast riser by the time the draft happens. Buster Posey wasn’t even a consensus first-rounder before his junior season at Florida State.

What this is, though, is an excuse to talk about different amateur players. That’s how everyone should read the BA mock draft — as an invitation to learn more about the players who might be drafted, not as a proclamation of what’s going to happen. It’s fun! Don’t be a wet finger in the ear. It’s fun.

On to Hankins, who is ...

  • 18 years old
  • A right-handed pitcher out of Georgia
  • 6’6”
  • able to throw a fastballs in the mid-90s with movement
  • able to throw wicked breaking balls
  • able to control them better than the typical high-schooler

Which are all things you would expect from a second-overall pick. Put it all together, and it looks like this:





Perhaps my favorite part of this video, other than the high cheese and the yakker (mornings at 8:00 on 1410 AM) is that Hankins looks like he has a little Johnny Cueto in his delivery. Compare his delivery at 0:08 to his delivery from 1:07 to his delivery at 0:46. Or lemme do it for you.

That is some extremely Cueto goodness, which is pretty remarkable to see from a teenager.

2080 Baseball offers this video of Hankins:

So while Hankins sounds like the name of a character in a foreign movie about Hollywood, it turns out he’s the kind of talent a team can get with the second-overall pick. I’ve watched a lot of draft videos over the years, most of them for players the Giants were rumored to take in the middle or end of the first round. They didn’t look like that.

Good job losing a whole bunch instead of settling for losing a few more games than expected, Giants. This will be a fascinating nine months.