Yankees miss out on all their targets, pivot in MLB.com's 2024 Mock Draft

Duke v Miami
Duke v Miami / Eakin Howard/GettyImages

Even in MLB.com's fantasy world for the way the 2024 MLB Draft might turn out, the New York Yankees are left in the cold and scrambling.

In the real world, these Yankees are going to have to flex their drafting-and-developing muscles big time again this season, as they will not be summarily rewarded with a high pick for going 82-80 in 2023. Though the Draft Lottery was exciting for many last year, allowing an average team like the Guardians to leap to the top pick, as well as a team that nearly made the playoffs in Cincinnati to select second, the Yanks weren't so lucky. Their first selection dropped 10 spots because of their frivolous spending, landing them at 26th when they'd technically earned 16th (but, again, money stuff).

By that point, most of their prototypical choices will probably be off the board; unless the Red Sox pivot back to prep bats, teams like Boston, San Francisco, Minnesota, and Toronto will have their eyes on the type of advanced college bats the Yankees typically covet.

According to MLB.com's soothsayers, it's quite likely there's a run on Yankees-type players, resulting in New York selecting their first top pick pitcher since all the way back in 2017 (Clarke Schmidt, which worked out). The name they came up with was Jonathan Santucci, a lefty with excellent stuff and command concerns who currently operates at Duke University. Based on MLB's assessment, it sort of feels like the Yankees were caught off guard in this experiment and had to pivot late. Yes, even in their Fake War Room, there's chaos.

MLB Mock Draft: Yankees select Duke pitcher Jonathan Santucci (because all the college bats were gone)

(shaking fist threateningly) He'd better go to the Cape Cod League, if he knows what's good for him!

Who knows? Maybe the Red Sox go with an Andrew Bailey choice after Alex Cora leaves for greener pastures. Maybe Toronto fumbles the bag and opts for an off-the-board pick rather than Tommy White, the mashing LSU third baseman that MLB pegs for them (grumbles...good fake pick...). But it seems quite possible the Yankees will be adding to the Matt Blake Pitching Factory this summer rather than welcoming a collegiate Wood Bat All-Star. That might not be a bad thing, but it is against the grain.

Behind the Yankees in MLB's mock? Two college catchers and a switch-pitcher in Mississippi State's remarkable Jurrangelo Cijntje. You don't draft for need, but ... the way the cookie crumbled in this particular mock, the Faux-Yankees made the most valuable pick for them at 26, even if many of the names who were off the board would've felt like a better fit.