Baseball America has Guardians selecting LHP Carson Whisenhunt in first 2022 mock draft
Baseball America put out its first 2022 MLB mock draft and has the Guardians taking another college pitcher from a familiar university.
Putting aside the constant fear of a truncated 2022 baseball season for a second, let’s look even further down the line at the 2022 MLB draft, thanks to Baseball America and their first mock draft for this year.
With the Guardians selecting 16th, the publication has the team taking left-handed pitcher Carson Whisenhunt out of East Carolina, the same school as last year’s top pick Gavin Williams. Whisenhunt put together a 3.77 ERA with 79 strikeouts in 62 innings as a sophomore, and is expected to be one of the best college pitchers in the draft this year.
This is thanks in large part to Whisenhunt’s excellent command (see below) and a three-pitch arsenal that includes a four-seam fastball, changeup, and spike curveball. The changeup is especially notable, as many people think it could be the best of this year’s draft class.
Here’s what else the Baseball America writers had to say about Whisenhunt:
"Carlos’ take: Would Cleveland dip into the East Carolina well in back-to-back drafts in this scenario? I’m not sure. Whisenhunt doesn’t seem very similar to Gavin Williams, but he does feel like a Cleveland pick as a college arm with some of the best pure command in the class and a changeup that could be one of my favorite individual pitches in the 2022 group. I think if he comes out with more velocity this spring he could be gone way earlier than this given the state of the college pitching.Scout’s take: I was thinking the same thing all the way, a pitcher for Cleveland. The Guardians pick from the same tree in East Carolina as they chose Williams last year. I felt more confident in Rocker going in this range if he decides to pitch in game situations before the draft. Whisenhunt’s ability to command his average fastball and curveball, along with a future 70 changeup, keeps him in first round conversations. He is the safest bet of all college lefthanders to pitch as a starter in the big leagues, so I think this is a good pick."
Now, like any mock draft, this is all meant to be taken with the biggest grain of salt you could ever imagine. But it never hurts to speculate, and Whisenhunt would likely fit in great with Cleveland’s ongoing pipeline of pitching talent. And hey, it sure doesn’t hurt to already have that connection with Williams.
Ultimately, Whisenhunt projects to be a middle-of-the-rotation starter at the very least. The fact that he’s a lefty and already possesses a devastating changeup with a fastball that sits in the low-90s only adds to the appeal.