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MLB draft: Seven players the Red Sox could pick at No. 4

Vanderbilt righthander Kumar Rocker has mid-high-90s velocity along with a wipeout slider.John Amis

Here’s a look at some of the players who project to go at or near the top of the Major League Baseball Draft and who represent potential fits for the Red Sox at No. 4 overall (statistics through Tuesday):

Adrian Del Castillo, C, Miami (.293/.362/.488): Regardless of whether he stays behind the plate, Del Castillo entered the year as the college position player with the best chance to land in the middle of an order, with 14 homers, 39 extra-base hits, 43 walks, and just 32 strikeouts in his freshman and sophomore seasons. He’s started slowly this year but has plenty of time to solidify his credentials.

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Jaden Hill, RHP, LSU (10⅓ IP, 6.97 ERA, 9 K’s, 2 BBs): Hill has the size (6 feet 4 inches, 234 pounds), mix (mid-high-90s with a good changeup and slider), and delivery to be in the conversation for the top college pitching prospect, so long as he proves he can remain healthy. He missed much of the 2019 season with an elbow injury. He made two excellent starts to open this year before a brutal third outing (one out, eight runs) last week against Oral Roberts.

Jordan Lawlar, SS, Jesuit Prep (Texas) (.333/.489/.515): The 18-year-old (who turns 19 in July) entered the year as the top high school prospect in the draft, and perhaps the top position player prospect. Scouts see him as a player with an above-average or better across-the-board skill set, though his battling line is down and his strikeout rate is up early in his senior season.

Jack Leiter, RHP, Vanderbilt (15 IP, 0.60 ERA, 26 K’s, 7 BBs): Leiter, a 21-year-old sophomore-eligible, has seen his fastball play up into the mid-high 90s this spring with command, along with feel for his curveball and slider. He has top-of-the-rotation potential.

Marcelo Mayer, SS, Eastlake (Calif.) High School (statistics unavailable): Mayer projects to stay at shortstop and is seen as one of the top pure high school hitters in the draft; early in his senior year he’s also hitting for increased power. That combination could land him in the top five.

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Could the Red Sox go with UCLA's Matt McLain with the fourth overall pick?Kyusung Gong/Associated Press

Matt McLain, SS, UCLA (.273/.421/.409): McLain hasn’t been able to match his tremendous start in the abbreviated 2020 season (.397/.421/.622), but as an up-the-middle position player with the chance for above-average offense, he could play his way into consideration at No. 4.

Kumar Rocker, RHP, Vanderbilt (15 IP, 0.60 ERA, 25 K’s, 7 BBs): Probably the most prominent prospect entering the draft thanks to mid-high-90s velocity along with a wipeout slider that helped him to a 19-strikeout no-hitter as a freshman in the 2019 College World Series. He shows easy mid-rotation projection, though with questions about whether there’s further upside.


Alex Speier can be reached at alex.speier@globe.com. Follow him on Twitter at @alexspeier.