#29 Sr. RHP Nick “Maldo” Maldonado
2023 Stats: 1-1, 1.45 ERA, 11.6 K/9, 8 SV.
Range: Rounds 5-10.
Prediction: Why do I have Maldo’s range at rounds 5-10 and Reilly’s at 5-20? Because as a senior draftee, it’s likely Maldo has less leverage in his negotiations. Further, you will notice that most MLB teams take like 3-4 tough signs and the rest of their picks are safe ones at pre-draft agreement numbers, as MLB teams get a total draft bonus pool for rounds 1-10, and can spend it regardless of where a player was taken within those 10 rounds. As such, though Maldo went undrafted last year, it was because of the following reasons: 1) the failed starting pitcher experiment, 2) his desire to return to the Dores to play with his brother (Chris had just flipped from Clemson and would be a freshman at VU), and 3) a signing bonus number that was likely a bit higher than MLB teams wanted to pay. This year, they didn’t fuck around. Rather, they kept him at closer, and he was one of the best in the game. He’s got a pretty high floor, though a low ceiling, as he is definitely a reliever only. Still, I expect him to go within the first 10 rounds and sign quickly.