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2011 MLB Draft: ESPN's Keith Law Projects Texas A&M RHP John Stilson To Rockies

In his most recent mock draft (subscription required), ESPN baseball analyst Keith Law projects Texas A&M RHP John Stilson to the Colorado Rockies with the 20th overall selection.

Stilson started his career as a reliever, but has found success in the Aggies starting rotation, going 5-1 with a 1.59 ERA this season through 85 innings for the 11th-ranked Aggies. Stilson also boasts an 4.05 K/BB ratio and a 9.4 K/9 strikeout rate. Opposing batters are hitting .225 against him this season. Many scouts currently view Stilson as a MLB reliever, but unlikely to stay a starter due to health concerns with his delivery.

The Rockies drafted a similar player from Texas Tech in the second round of the 2010 MLB Entry Draft by the name of Chad Bettis. Most viewed Bettis as a likely MLB reliever, but he has excelled in A and A+ ball since being drafted, and has established himself as one of the Rockies’ top starting pitching prospects. It could be possible that Colorado follows a similar route with their first round selection this year.

Law also suggests that the Rockies could have interest in LSU OF Mikie Mahtook. Mahtook currently sports a .385/.485/.697 line while playing center field for the Tigers. He’s rated as a solid college bat with five-tool star potential. The Rockies have spent first round selections on college outfielders with power potential the past two years; Kyle Parker from Clemson (1st, 2010) and Tim Wheeler from Sacramento State (1st supp., 2009). Both Wheeler and Parker are enjoying excellent seasons in the minors.

Neither projected pick would fill a specific system need, but the Rockies’ recent draft history suggests either Stilson or Mahtook are very likely possibilities.

Follow this stream for more on the 2011 MLB Draft.