Giants draft potential Posey replacement

The best player on the board went off the board with the first pick of the second round as the Pittsburgh Pirates tabbed outfielder Josh Bell, a Texas commit who sent a letter to the MLB Scouting Bureau requesting that clubs not draft him because he wants to go to college. With Bell and Gerrit Cole, the Pirates have selected two of the top 20 talents in this year's draft. The San Diego Padres were similarly aggressive, and the San Francisco Giants might have selected Buster Posey's replacement.

Second-round highlights:

• Arizona continued its dive into pitching, landing Coastal Carolina right-hander Anthony Meo, another potential first-rounder who fell some, possibly thanks to the belief that he'll end up in the bullpen. But he has a chance to start, and the Diamondbacks' crop of pitching in this class -- Trevor Bauer, Archie Bradley, Andrew Chafin and now Meo -- is stellar.

• The Baltimore Orioles' selection of Vanderbilt's Jason Esposito is a good fit, as the club lacks a future third-base prospect with any momentum and the kid can hit despite some questions arising this spring about his ability to hit better pitching.

• Kansas City's selection of prep catcher Cameron Gallagher was similarly shrewd. He was the best signable player available and fills a need in the Royals farm system.

• Cleveland, at No. 67 overall, took the best player on the board regardless of position or signability in prep righty Dillon Howard. The Indians' first two picks are top drawer as they called the name of prep shortstop Francisco Lindor at No. 8 overall.

• The Chicago Cubs' selection of Florida prep first baseman Dan Vogelbach is a gutsy one, as he's a bat only and isn't a good athlete. But his power is plus and he might be able to hit for enough average to be the club's first baseman of the future. Conditioning might always be a concern for Vogelbach, whose teammate Hudson Boyd was selected in the sandwich round by the Minnesota Twins.

• The Milwaukee Brewers (Jorge Lopez) and Toronto Blue Jays (Daniel Norris) remained focus on pitching. The Brewers selected Taylor Jungmann and Jed Bradley in the first round and now get a projectable right-hander to develop. The Blue Jays have taken three pitchers in their first five picks, all of them from the prep level.

• The Detroit Tigers might have been hoping Bell, Howard or Norris would fall to them, but that didn't happen, and the club instead filled an organizational need with James McCann, a solid college catcher from Arkansas.

• The St. Louis Cardinals greatly strengthened their class by selecting Charlie Tilson, a toolsy prep outfielder. However, he's expected to require first-round money to forgo his commitment to Illinois.

• If the Padres get Austin Hedges signed, it would be the best pick in Round 2, outside of Bell. He's a legit defender behind the dish and has the tools to learn to hit. San Francisco's selection of Oregon State catcher Andrew Susac is a great fit, but Susac won't come cheap as he's a draft-eligible sophomore and has more leverage to go back to school for another year. Susac, however, could move fairly quickly and give the Giants the chance to move Posey off the catcher's position if they have any inclination to do so.

• Philadelphia had two choices in the round and tabbed prep shortstop Roman Quinn and Miami third baseman Harold Martinez. Quinn's future is likely at second base, and Martinez had a tough year at the plate until late in the spring after heading into the season as a potential top-50 selection. The power is there and he can handle third base defensively, but he had trouble squaring it up with the new bats mandated by the NCAA this season. The Phillies appear to have changed their trend in the draft after years of going with upside athletes.

• The Boston Red Sox, who selected three of the top 35 talents Monday, tabbed William Jerez at No. 81 overall. Jerez is a projectable outfielder who likely will move to a corner spot, but his left-handed swing and athleticism induce dreams of an everyday player down the road.

Of the 30 players taken in the round, 15 came out of college and 15 out of high school. There were 17 position players, and four of those were catchers. Stay tuned for more coverage.