2014 MLB Draft: Baseball America mock draft projects Derek Fisher to Red Sox

Geoff Burke - USA TODAY Sports

That's two mock drafts saying Boston is interested in the college outfielder.

Derek Fisher is the first player in the various mock drafts to repeat as the 26th overall pick in the 2014 MLB Draft. The college bat was first linked to the Red Sox by Scout.com's Kiley McDaniel, and now Baseball America's John Manuel has done the same in their second go at projecting the June 5 order.

A college junior from Virginia, Fisher is a power-first bat whom Baseball America ranked as the fifth-best outfielder in this summer's draft class. The bat is where it's at with Fisher, as a fuller description of his current state will tell you:

He'll need the reps that pro ball can deliver to improve his raw route-running and defensive consistency, as he's a below-average defender presently with a below-average arm. Scouts give Fisher 70 raw power; he sticks to the gaps and staying inside the ball in games, as was the case in the Cape Cod League, where he hit .333 but with just six extra-base hits (all doubles) last summer.

It sounds like he has some contact skills, and the potential to send the ball very far is there: raw 70 power is not something you're just going to find anywhere. David Ortiz and Mike Napoli are the two Red Sox players who could be described as having raw 70 power. On the other side of that, though, Will Middlebrooks also has that level of pop, and it hasn't worked out quite as well. Potential doesn't guarantee anything, and there is a huge difference between raw and in-game power -- Fisher's still young enough to learn how to turn the former into the latter, and you don't say no to that this late in the first round.

Baseball America also mapped out Boston's second pick, a sandwich selection at no. 33. Alex Verdugo, a high school left-hander from Tucson, is their choice. It screams Boston, as he was considered the top two-way high schooler earlier in the spring, but has seen his stock fall thanks to blister issues (and, possibly more troubling, effort concerns). Baseball America rated him the 12th-best lefty in the draft class, stating that his slider has "above-average potential", a change-up that looks to be average, and a tendency to throw strikes.

While the effort/behavior concerns are real, he's just a kid: getting into a professional environment with plenty of players and coaches to look up to and listen to could help. Every draftable player is a risk in their own way, and if the Sox think Verdugo can play, then at no. 33 in the draft, they can afford said risk if nothing better has presented itself.

So long as they don't end up with another embarrassing Jon Denney incident, anyway.

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