West Virginia 2026 Draft Review

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Updated: November 20, 2017

This year’s draft started with scouting controversy and then some players trying to hide their way out of the draft, but in the end things went well for West Virginia.  While the team traded their own picks in the first 3 rounds, they did have 1 compensation pick from not signing a draftee last year and a 3rd rounder acquired in a trade.  This season the team decided to go for the best talent available at every pick and worry about where they fit in later.  Let’s review the picks.

(1-32) SP Tommy Taylor (Minnesota): The Alleghenies had Tommy high on their list and around pick 20 they were getting very excited and nervous at the same time as his name kept dropping.  When it was time for pick 32, the team announced his name right away.  Tommy has an array of pitches he can throw and while his pitches hit 100, he doesn’t throw a pure fastball, go figure.   In his last game of the season he strained his bicep, but the team doctor has given him the A-OK.  Tommy will probably start in Single-A this year and the team expects to move him up at the start of next season.

(3-8) SP Donald Lesher (Illinois): The team had hoped another pitcher would fall to them, but he was picked a few spots earlier, so the team chose Donald Lesher.  Donald is not known for his speed on the pitches, but they do move well and he has some of the best command ever seen.  Since HS, he has pitched 374 innings and walked only 54 people.  He is expected to start in SA, but if he does well, should be in Single-A in no time.

(4-20) 1b Krelis Knippschd (Rikkyo University):  Like when Tommy was drafted, the team got the same feelings when they saw Krelis was still available.  .  The team had him on their original list for the 1st round, but he somehow slipped to the 4th round and being Dutch with the pick being (4-20) it seemed to be destiny.  Krelis batting numbers in college are ones that make you a legend.  In 4 years, he hit 57 home runs, 171 RBI’s and a line of .306/.379/.567.  The only negative is he hasn’t done well in the playoffs, so who knows how that will translate.  He is going to be in SA to start, but like Lesher could find his way to Single-A in no time.

(5-26) 2b John Gosselin (Nihon University):  Gosselin is a player that as a Freshman and Sophmore year showed great promise, but the next 2 years didn’t go as planned.    While he is an above average defender at 2b, his hitting has not progressed as one would like.  The team thinks that he is smart enough to work with the coaches and achieve his potential.  He is slated to be playing in SA.

(6-25) C Daniel Gallacher (Oxford):  Well if things don’t work out in baseball, he at least has an Oxford education to fall back on.  Gallacher is what is known as an all offensive catcher.  His first 2 years at Oxford he was a DH and the last 2 years he learned to play catcher.  While his bat might be ready, defensively he is not close to making the Big Show.  The team platoon him in SA this year at catcher and DH.

(7-26) P Ralph Moore (Hoorn HS):  Ralph was picked in the 7th round after slumping his last few games and his stock dropping.  He has plenty potential, but will he ever achieve it is the question.  He seems to have the ability to strike players out, but also gives up a lot of home runs.  He is slated for SA for the next few years.

(8-26) SS António Morán (South Florida):  António bounced back his Sr. year after a horrendous Jr. year.  While it might not have been enough to elevate him into a better pick, he was put on the radar of WV.  The team is impressed with his ability to play well defensively all around the infield and not be a black hole at the plate.  He will be slated for SA.

(9-26) SS Takamasa Sakamoto (Nihon University):  While scouting out Gosselin, the team noticed Sakamoto’s defense and speed.  While his bat has never come around, the team thinks that he may one day be able to be a key piece to a team off the bench.  The team might try and introduce him to new positions.  He will be slated for SA.

(10-26) P Dave Owens (San juan College):  Out of HS, Dave was drafted in the 5th round by Bakersfield and did not sign.  He attended San Juan and his freshman year didn’t go as planned.  His next 2 years, Dave was an above average starter for the team.  While he may not have progressed the way some scouts had hoped, our scouts thought he was well worth taking, especially in the 10th round.  We expect Dave to fight for pitching time in SA.  It will be tough, but the team is giving him the edge over some incumbents.

(11-26) P Subaru Hujita (Atletico Casatille Sociedad): Subura was drafted by Tempe out of HS in the 4th round in 2023, but decided he wanted to go back to school.  The funny thing is he didn’t throw a ball until this year.  What Subaru was doing during his time off, no one really knows, but as soon as he stepped back on the field, he was more dominate than when he left.  He found control and was striking players out at the high rate he did in HS.  The team expects him to make the SA team, but one has to wonder if he will just disappear again.

(12-26) P Júlio Feliciano (Chatsworth HS): Júlio was drafted out of HS due to his excellent command.   The team is hoping that they can teach him to keep the ball in the park more, otherwise it won’t be a long career for him.  He is not guaranteed a spot and will have to do some convincing to make the SA team.

(13-26) 1b Enrique Díaz (Memphis):  Enrique was drafted due to his ability to field 1b and the fact that his has some decent power.  With a 1b being drafted earlier, Enrique job most likely will be a late inning replacement for fielding and maybe a PH or 2 when a HR is needed.  While there is potential there for him to turn the corner, it looks like his destiny with WV is predetermined.

(14-26) LF Max Barklie (Rutgers):  When does an injury ensure you get picked?  When you have too many players on the roster already.  The team likes Max’s potential, but really picked him over the other player they wanted due to the ability to DL him.  Max is expected to make the team after his brief DL stint, but nothing is guaranteed.  Max had a freshman year for the books, but since then the last 3 years have been pretty abysmal.  The team is hoping after his injury it will give him the motivation he needs to improve, otherwise instead of SA, he will be a FA.

(15-26) P José Durango (Seton Hall Prep): The team had hope to immortalize another player as Mr. Irrelevant, but he was picked right before, so the team made José, Mr. Irrelevant.  He has had a decent HS career, but he should have gone to college instead of get drafted.  He has very little chance of making the team even with his excellent command.  Hopefully he can go back to college and make something of himself.

 

Well there are your West Virginia 2026 draftees.  The team is happy with the quality of players drafted, but they have no idea on their ability to sign them as that wasn’t really factored in this season as it probably should have.  If the team signs their first 8 picks, it will have been a successful draft in GM Abcarian’s mind.  We will just have to wait and see who signs.