The Dodgers are looking to boost their farm system via the draft this week. With the 2021 MLB draft officially underway in Denver, Los Angeles was busy keeping track of first-round picks before getting their turn at the 29th pick.
They used that pick to scoop up UMS-Wright Preparatory School pitcher Maddux Bruns on Sunday night. Bruns is a left-hander with legitimate star potential. And if the Dodgers and Billy Gasparino think he was good enough to roll the dice on in round one, the potential has to be there.
Bruns stands 6-foot-2 and had a whole lot of success at the High School level in Alabama. He struck out 102 batters and allowed 6 runs across 49 innings of work. That led to him being named the 2021 Gatorade Player of the year. The Dodgers picked him up despite his commitment to play at Mississippi State.
The Dodgers have now selected 2 High School pitchers in the last 4 years who signed to Mississippi State. They took J.T Ginn with the 30th pick in 2018 and Ginn decided instead to go to college. He fell to the second round in 2020 and ended up going to the Mets.
But there is optimism that the Dodgers will be able to sign Bruns to a deal and talk him out of college. The slot value for the 29th pick this year is $2,424,600 and the indications were that Bruns would accept that.
Bruns was named by his father after Hall of Fame pitcher Greg Maddux. He’s also the first high school pitcher picked by the Dodgers in the first round since 2006. They picked some guy named Clayton Kershaw that year with the 7th pick. Bruns apparently also models some of his game after Kershaw, trying to get that 12-6 curveball into his repertoire.