The Pittsburgh Pirates made LSU right-handed pitcher Paul Skenes the first overall pick in the 2023 MLB Draft, but their work wasn’t done for the night.
The first day of the draft covered the first 70 picks, and the Pirates had two more selections to make — one in the Second Round (42nd overall) and one in the Competitive Balance Round B (67th overall).
With the 42nd pick, the Pirates selected shortstop Mitch Jebb from Michigan State. At pick No. 67, the Pirates drafted high school right-handed pitcher Zander Mueth.
Jebb, a 21-year-old, hit .337 with a .933 OPS in 50 games with the Spartans in 2023. The left-handed hitting Jebb recorded 15 doubles, one home run and led the Big Ten conference and was fourth in all of college baseball with seven triples. In addition, he stole 14 bases.
Jebb was considered to be the 46th-overall prospect according to MLB Pipeline. According to Pipeline, Jebb has a plus-hit tool — as evident by 28 strikeouts and 32 walks in 241 plate appearances — great speed and below-average power. There is a feeling he could turn into a 12-15 home run guy, though.
He has the makings to stick at shortstop defensively but has the profile pivot to second base if needed and has had experience at third.
As for Mueth, he’s a big body, standing 6-foot-6, almost the exact height as Skenes. The right-hander has a three-pitch mix with a fastball, slider and changeup. Both the fastball and slider are above-average pitches while he does seem to have a good feel for his changeup.
Pipeline’s 83rd-ranked prospect, Mueth draws comparisons to Red Sox right-hander Tanner Houck, who was drafted in the first round by Boston in 2017.
The Pirates will try and get the recently-turned 18-year-old to forgo his commitment to Ole Miss and begin his professional career.
The slot value for pick No. 42 is $2.05M and for pick No. 67, it’s $1.13M.