MLB.com Columnist

Jonathan Mayo

Mock draft version 1.0

D-backs may be leaning toward Tate at No. 1, which could land Rodgers in Houston

Mock draft version 1.0

Some would argue that it's too early to attempt projecting what the first round of the First-Year Player Draft will look like. Think that stops us? Not a chance.

Below is our first crack at what the first 26 picks will be. The Blue Jays, Mariners, Mets, Nationals and Padres forfeited their first-round picks for signing free agents who had received qualifying offers from their previous teams. The Astros have an extra first-rounder after being unable to sign last year's top pick, pitcher Brady Aiken.

Complete 2015 Draft order

Both Jim Callis and I will repeat this exercise several times over the coming weeks as the Draft rapidly approaches. That should take mock draft fans all the way up to the June 8-10 event.

Day 1 will unfold at MLB Network's Studio 42 in Secaucus, N.J., with representatives for all 30 clubs in attendance and a handful of draftees expected to be on hand. MLB Network and MLB.com will have live coverage of that first night, covering the top 70 picks -- or through Round 2 -- starting at 7 p.m. ET. MLB.com will provide exclusive live pick-by-pick coverage of Rounds 3-10 on Day 2, starting at 1 p.m. ET, and Rounds 11-40 on June 10, beginning at noon ET. Prior to the start of the Draft, MLB Network and MLB.com will air a Draft preview show starting at 6 ET.

1. Arizona Diamondbacks
Dillon Tate, RHP, Santa Barbara

It's apparent the D-backs haven't settled on anyone for the top spot yet, with Brendan Rodgers and Dansby Swanson getting the most attention at the top. There is a lot of buzz about Arizona cutting a deal here, with names like Tyler Stephenson cropping up, and that shouldn't be completely discounted. That said, the D-backs had a lot of their front-office brass -- Dave Stewart, De Jon Watson and Bob Gebhard -- all to see Tate, who has shaken off a minor trap muscle injury, start last Friday.

2015 Draft: Dillon Tate, P

2. Houston Astros (Compensation for not signing Aiken in 2014)
Brendan Rodgers, SS, Lake Mary (Fla.) HS

Rodgers has sat atop our Draft rankings, both in the fall and in our more recent Top 100. He's still considered the best all-around talent in the Draft, and the Astros, who have scouted him hard all spring, will be happy if the Arizona Diamondbacks pass on him. Tate would be a good choice if the D-backs go in another direction.

2015 Draft: Brendan Rodgers, SS

3. Colorado Rockies
Dansby Swanson, SS, Vanderbilt

The Rockies would love for Rodgers to get to them, something not out of the realm of possibility. And as much as they might want pitching, it might be hard for them to pass up Swanson, considered to be the best all-around position player in the class, one who can stay at shortstop and serve as a top-of-the-order catalyst.

4. Texas Rangers
Daz Cameron, OF, Eagle's Landing Christian Academy
(McDonough, Ga.)

The industry seems to think the Rangers will either stick with what they often do -- high-upside young talent -- or look at college pitching for someone who could help out more quickly. For now, we'll go with the former in Cameron, the son of Mike who has the chance to be a very good all-around center fielder.

2015 Draft: Daz Cameron, OF

5. Houston Astros
Carson Fulmer, RHP, Vanderbilt

Florida high school outfielder Kyle Tucker's name comes up here quite a bit, but after getting a high school bat at No. 2, getting a more advanced college arm could make a lot of sense. Fulmer has been as good as any college starter for one of the best programs in the country, and he could shorten up, move to the bullpen and help out in a hurry, a la Brandon Finnegan.

6. Minnesota Twins
Jon Harris, RHP, Missouri State

Some college arms, like Kyle Funkhouser, are sliding a bit because of performance. Harris, on the other hand, has his arrow pointing up, even if he did leave his last start in the eighth inning because of a blister. Tucker's name is mentioned a lot here as well.

7. Boston Red Sox
Alex Bregman, SS, LSU

There may not be another team-to-player match that's been mentioned more, which might guarantee it doesn't happen. Bregman could be gone by this point anyway, as he's shown he can swing the bat and has improved his defense enough for many teams to feel confident he can stay at shortstop.

8. Chicago White Sox
Tyler Jay, LHP, Illinois

His college program has been unstoppable (24 straight wins) and Jay has been nearly unhittable. He's pitched almost entirely in relief, but often multiple innings. A team taking Jay this high -- and his name has been all over the top 10 -- likely thinks he can start.

9. Chicago Cubs
Walker Buehler, RHP, Vanderbilt

That's right, three Vandy guys in the top 10. The Cubs might have interest in the two college arms going ahead of them. Then again, they certainly haven't shied away from bucking conventional "wisdom" and going with a bat when most have seen an arm in their future.

10. Philadelphia Phillies
Tyler Stephenson, C, Kennesaw Mountain HS (Kennesaw, Ga.)

Perhaps no one in the class has raised his stock more than Stephenson, the Georgia prep backstop. His name has been mentioned all over the first round. If the Phillies want to go "safer" and head to the college route, Arizona shortstop Kevin Newman's name has come up.

2015 Draft: Tyler Stephenson, C

11. Cincinnati Reds
Kyle Tucker, OF, Plant HS (Tampa, Fla.)

As mentioned, Tucker's name has come up as a potential top five pick. His brother, Preston, just made his big league debut for the Astros, and Kyle has the chance to be a better all-around player. If Tucker is gone, the Reds could look at a number of other high school outfielders.

12. Miami Marlins
Mike Nikorak, RHP, Stroudsburg (Pa.) HS

Pitching in the Northeast, Nikorak got a later start than many prep arms. While his performances have run a little hot and cold, his combination of stuff, clean delivery and upside make him a candidate to be the first high school pitcher to be selected. The Marlins are one of a group of teams in this area that have been watching him very closely.

13. Tampa Bay Rays
Trenton Clark, OF, Richland HS (North Richland Hills, Texas)

Depending on who you talk to, and what day it is, Clark, Garrett Whitley and Nick Plummer are ranked in different order. The trio of high school outfielders all have a chance to go in this neck of the woods, with Clark bringing an all-around tool package, with the ability to stay in center field, to the table.

14. Atlanta Braves
Cornelius Randolph, SS, Griffin (Ga.) HS

There's an old adage in mock draft circles: Give the Braves the best Georgia high schooler on the board. They'd probably love for that to be Stephenson, but with him off the board, it's time for Randolph, who has the chance to hit for average and power.

15. Milwaukee Brewers
Garrett Whitley, OF, Niskayuna (N.Y.) HS

Whitley opened eyes over the summer and then kept on doing it as the weather finally turned in the Northeast. He has a ton of bat speed and more than enough footspeed to stay in center field long term.

16. New York Yankees
Chris Betts, C, Wilson HS (Long Beach, Calif.)

While the question might remain about Betts' ability to stay behind the plate long-term, most feel confident enough to send him out as a catcher. And even fewer doubt the bat, a left-handed stroke that should produce average and power.

17. Cleveland Indians
Kyle Funkhouser, RHP, Louisville

Not long ago, Funkhouser appeared a lock to be a top 10 pick. Back-to-back subpar outings have made teams pause, however, and he could be sliding a bit. Funkhouser has time to turn it around, but the Indians would have to consider him should he still be here.

2015 Draft: Kyle Funkhouser, P

18. San Francisco Giants
Kolby Allard, LHP, San Clemente (Calif.) HS

Had Allard stayed healthy, he could have gone in the top five picks. But the top prep lefty had a stress reaction in his back, leaving those who already were a little concerned with durability perhaps more worried. Word was he was cleared to start throwing and private workouts for teams could reverse his direction.

19. Pittsburgh Pirates
Nick Plummer, OF, Brother Rice HS (Bloomfield Hills, Mich.)

Plummer is another northern high schooler who had a big summer and has continued to swing a good bat once he got going this spring. The Pirates have taken three high school hitters with three first-round picks in the previous two Drafts.

20. Oakland Athletics
Andrew Benintendi, OF, Arkansas

A strong 2015 season coupled with a lack of viable college bats has Benintendi on the rise. The Draft-eligible sophomore had always shown an ability to hit, run and defend in center field. Added strength has led to a power uptick that has made him a more intriguing prospect.

21. Kansas City Royals
James Kaprielian, RHP, UCLA

Kaprielian is the epitome of the college performer, a starting pitcher who really knows his craft and has fared well at a top-notch program, albeit without wow stuff. College arms getting it done tend to be on the rise as the Draft approaches.

22. Detroit Tigers
Phil Bickford, RHP, College of Southern Nevada

The Tigers have never shied away from power arms. Bickford, the former first-rounder who transferred from Cal State Fullerton to be Draft-eligible this year, fits that description as someone who has been up to 97-98 mph as a reliever in the past, though he has the stuff to start.

23. St. Louis Cardinals
Ian Happ, OF, Cincinnati

There's a very good chance Happ will go well before this as a college performer who can really hit, though his lack of a true defensive home might concern some. It's hard to imagine he would go any later than the 20-25 range.

24. Los Angeles Dodgers
Brady Aiken, LHP, IMG Academy (Bradenton, Fla.)

Last year's No. 1 overall pick, Aiken threw just 13 pitches for IMG before walking off the mound, needing Tommy John surgery. A team not concerned about what the Astros had described as a smaller UCL might roll the dice. The Dodgers pick at 24 and 35, so they have some pool flexibility for someone like Aiken or Duke's Mike Matuella, who was a potential top-of-the-Draft prospect before he, too, needed Tommy John surgery.

2015 Draft: Brady Aiken, P

25. Baltimore Orioles
Kevin Newman, SS, Arizona

Another college performer who could very well get picked earlier than this, Newman has been a bit of a polarizing prospect. Some see him as a true prospect with speed, while others see more of a second baseman without any power.

26. Los Angeles Angels
Blake Trahan, SS, Louisiania-Lafayette

There are a number of high school arms who could come into play in the latter stages of the first round, like Ashe Russell and Donny Everett, but the Angels do like Trahan, who can stick at short and has the speed to be a catalyst in the future.

Jonathan Mayo is a reporter for MLBPipeline.com and writes a blog, B3. Follow @JonathanMayoB3 on Twitter. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.