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Draft Prospect Retro – Northeastern’s Adam Ottavino

Busy, busy, busy week ahead. To get things started, a blast from the past in honor of Adam Ottavino’s Saturday big league debut. Ottavino will always have a special place in my heart because he was the starting pitcher of the only no-hitter I have ever witnessed in person. 18,431 baseball games watched in person (estimated), and only one no-hitter. Good story, huh? Anyway, here’s something originally published June 1, 2006 because a) it’s topical, b) it’s an excuse for me to put up that sad excuse for the above live action baseball photo taken by yours truly, c) it’s a holiday and this took me 10 minutes to put together, and d) an easy post like this buys me another day to finish up working on my rankings of top college outfielders and pitchers. Sneaky! Anyway, here it is…

There is a lot to like about Northeastern righthander Adam Ottavino. He’s got a major league body already, throws with a loose and easy arm action, is capable of hitting 93/94 MPH with his fastball (sits at 89-92), and mixes in a plus slider along with an emerging curve. His 6’5”, 215 pound frame and imposing presence on the mound make him look like a major leaguer and his workload this year at Northeastern shows he is capable of becoming a big league innings eater.

One of my big concerns after watching him pitch is the way his throwing motion differs when he going from his fastball to any of his off-speed stuff – the Hofstra hitters completely sat on his curve in the top of the sixth at the May 5th game I was at. I realize this is an obscure reference and an extremely small sample size, but it is an example of the larger problem I noticed in the three games I scouted him. This is his May 5th six inning breakdown (from the Northeastern website):

Hofstra 6th – Caputo singled to left field (2-2). Caputo advanced to second on a passed ball. Kougasian struck out swinging (3-2). Caputo stole third. Walsh singled up the middle, RBI (1-1); Caputo scored. Stern doubled down the lf line (0-1); Walsh advanced to third. Oliveri singled to right field, 2 RBI (2-2); Stern scored; Walsh scored. Panzarella grounded into double play 3b to 2b to 1b (0-0); Oliveri out on the play. 3 runs, 4 hits, 0 errors, 0 LOB.

In that Hofstra-NEU game, I was able to stand with the scouts behind home plate and get a first hand look at their radar gun readings and pitch charts. His breakdown in that game (again, this is just one game, but it is reflective of Ottavino’s bigger picture as a pitcher):

  • Fastball: 89-92 early on in the game, but he was able to hit 93, 94 when he really needed. The majority of the game he was sitting between 89 (his low point) and 91
  • Slider: 77-81 – very good pitch already, sharp break, gets flatter as the game goes on
  • Curveball: 71-74 – he rarely used his curve (threw it less than 10 times in this game in the game) and when he did, it wasn’t all that impressive to me
  • I’m as high on Ottavino as almost any other righthanded college arm in this draft – he’ll be a major league pitcher someday. Whether he becomes a back of the rotation workhorse innings eater, a late inning setup man, or something bigger and better (maybe a 2/3 starter or closer) remains to be seen. If I was a betting man, I’d say he reaches that high end projection and becomes one of the first few pitchers to reach the major leagues out of this draft.

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    Quick Comparison – 2010 College Catchers vs 2009 College Catchers

    Given the choice of a random sampling of college catching prospects from 2010 and 2009, what side of the ’10 vs ’09 debate will you fall on? It’s been said that 2010 is the better year for college catching, a sentiment I agree with for what it’s worth, but why not actually put conventional wisdom to the death with a head-to-head comparison? Originally I had planned to pick players 1-5-10-15-20-25 from each draft class (2010 based on my rankings, 2009 based on draft order) and compare, but the presence of Bryce Harper would make the entire exercise even more pointless than it probably already is. Instead, we’ll compare 2-7-12-17-22-27. Also, I may have miscounted with the 2009 draft class, but, really, the comparison is unscientific enough already, what’s the harm in mixing things up even further?

    Full 2010 college catcher rankings tomorrow. Maybe an Alternate Reality Mock Draft, too. Real Mock Draft is almost done, should be ready to be published early next week. Additionally, comments and emails will be answered in the next 48 hours. Please, do try to contain your excitement. As for our college catching comparison, here’s the quick breakdown:

    2010

    Yasmani Grandal
    Cody Stanley
    Tommy Medica
    Xorge Carrillo
    Tyler Bullock
    Jeremy Mayo

    OR

    2009

    Josh Phegley
    Tobias Streich
    Carlos Ramirez
    Tyson Van Winkle
    Michael Thomas
    Jeremy Gillan

    Personally, I like Grandal better than Phegley, Stanley over Streich, and Ramirez more than Medica. 2 wins for 2010, 1 win for 2009. After that, things get pretty close to even with each matchup. Xorge Carrillo gets the edge over Van Winkle in the battle of hilariously named prospects, Bullock (offense!) wins by the slightest of margins over Thomas (defense!), and Mayo/Gillan is a true pick-em. 4 wins for 2010, 1 win for 2009, 1 too close to call. Admittedly not the most scientific way to determine a particular year’s draft strength, but it’s at least one more tiny data point for the pro-2010 crowd.

    College Second Basemen: A Brief History

    Breaking news! College second basemen selected in the first 20 rounds of the MLB Draft need to show exceptional ability in one of three offensive categories –  power, plate discipline, or speed. I know, I was shocked to find out that big league clubs value those things as well. A quick study of early round college second basemen shows that 78% of college 2B taken in the top 20 rounds over the past three years showed standout skills in one of the three aforementioned areas.

    Caveats for this quick and dirty study include a) small sample (only three years worth of data), b) unscientific standards (power = minimum .550 SLG; plate discipline = more walks than strikeouts; speed = 20+ stolen bases), and c) 2010 statistics were park and scheduled adjusted (thanks, College Splits!), but 2007-2009 statistics were left as is.

    Tomorrow we’ll look at players in the 2010 draft class that fit the criteria, as well as a top 20…or 25…or 30…list of top college 2B prospects. To just give an idea of what information can potentially be teased out with these quick studies, three “big” name players that don’t currently (as of 4/26/10) surpass any of the three statistical benchmarks include Alabama JR 2B Ross Wilson, California JR 2B Brian Guinn and Central Florida JR 2B Derek Luciano. That’s not to say that the positive scouting reports on each will be ignored, but it’s something to at least consider going forward. On the flip side, there are three or four 2010 draft-eligible college second basemen with the chance to hit the over on all three statistical benchmarks. Identities revealed tomorrow.

    Until then, check out the complete list of college second basemen taken in the top twenty rounds over the past three drafts. Slash stats are obvious (AVG/OBP/SLG), but the other two sets of numbers are BB/K and SB/SBA. Players that did not hit any of the three benchmarks are in bold. Players that hit on all three benchmarks denoted with the triple star (***) badge of honor.

    2009

    California JR 2B Jeff Kobernus: .341/.385/.544 (17/25; 20/24)

    North Carolina JR 2B Kyle Seager: .393/.487/.592 (45/38; 13/14)

    Minnesota JR 2B Derek McCallum: .409/.485/.741 (30/34; 6/6)

    Cal Poly JR 2B Adam Buschini: .422/.484/.730 (21/26; 13/15)

    LSU JR 2B Ryan Schimpf: .336/.449/.668 (44/50; 18/25)

    *** Western Carolina JR 2B Nick Liles: .367/.421/.571 (21/21; 24/30)

    Rice JR 2B Brock Holt: .348/.427/.560 (34/35; 11/16)

    Pittsburgh JR 2B Chris Sedon: .398/.453/.796 (13/41; 19/25)

    Southern Mississippi SR 2B James Ewing: .308/.384/.418 (26/19; 3/5)

    *** New Mexico JR 2B Mike Brownstein: .414/.486/.611 (34/23; 20/26)

    Belmont JR 2B Daniel Wagner: .323/.359/.523 (13/27; 24/28)

    Coastal Carolina SR 2B Tyler Bortnick: .363/.461/.566 (38/33; 10/15)

    Arkansas SR 2B Ben Tschepikow: .317/.398/.513 (31/33; 17/23)

    UC Santa Barbara JR 2B Matt Valaika: .343/.413/.545 (13/16; 1/2)

    2008

    *** Miami JR 2B Jemile Weeks: .363/.452/.641 (35/38; 22/23)

    New Orleans JR 2B Johnny Giovotella: .354/.470/.591 (53/25; 19/26)

    Virginia JR 2B David Adams: .286/.384/.411 (41/39; 16/19)

    Stanford JR 2B Cord Phelps: .351/.445/.587 (41/38; 6/10)

    Delaware JR 2B Alex Buchholz: .319/.401/.515 (15/24; 4/6)

    *** Cincinnati JR 2B Josh Harrison: .378/.437/.559 (25/20; 32/40)

    California SR 2B Josh Satin: .379/.500/.723 (47/45; 6/9)

    Tulane JR 2B Anthony Scelfo: .322/.453/.578 (54/46; 8/11)

    Auburn JR 2B Matthew Hall: .279/.342/.411 (19/41; 7/10)

    Belmont Abbey College SO 2B Alex Castellanos: .390/.452/.683 (15/22; 9/14)

    Vanderbilt SR 2B Dominic De la Osa: .297/.410/.506 (36/54; 27/33)

    Mississippi State JR 2B Michael Turner: .217/.217/.348 (0/1; 0/0)

    Nebraska SR 2B Jake Opitz: .339/.434/.568 (37/26; 13/15)

    Texas A&M SR 2B Blake Stouffer: .258/.399/.378 (47/48; 17/21)

    Fresno State JR 2B Erik Wetzel: .365/.452/.495 (44/42; 12/18)

    Florida Atlantic SR 2B Daniel Cook: .293/.410/.556 (21/16; 3/7)

    UCLA SR 2B Alden Carrithers: .377/.484/.543 (40/32; 17/23)

    Georgia Southern SR 2B Jeremy Beckham: .333/.434/.386 (26/22; 24/29)

    Tennessee SR 2B Andrew Simunic: .297/.379/.370 (23/25; 20/23)

    UC Irvine SR 2B Ben Orloff: .358/.414/.409 (21/16; 18/23)

    Long Beach State JR 2B Jason Tweedy: .306/.370/.430 (10/26; 2/3)

    Southern Mississippi SR 2B Trey Sutton: .315/.409/.457 (20/20; 3/5)

    2007

    Arizona State JR 2B Eric Sogard: .394/.488/.619 (39/23; 18/23)

    *** Florida State JR 2B Tony Thomas: .430/.522/.733 (43/39; 31/36)

    Loyola Marymount JR 2B Eric Farris: .349/.418/.466 (23/14; 33/42)

    South Carolina JR 2B Travis Jones: .318/.416/.594 (28/46; 13/17)

    Auburn JR 2B Russell Dixon: .313/.379/.470 (14/40; 0/2)

    Wichita State JR 2B Damon Sublett: .354/.462/.496 (49/40; 14/16)

    UC Irvine SR 2B Cody Cipriano: .339/.433/.605 (35/50; 10/15)

    New Mexico JR 2B Jordan Pacheco: .397/.511/.580 (43/28; 7/10)

    Mississippi JR 2B Justin Henry: .381/.450/.496 (30/21; 22/28)

    Southern California JR 2B Matt Cusick: .324/.415/.412 (31/17; 10/15)

    Tulane JR 2B Brad Emaus: .329/.439/.443 (41/23; 3/7)

    Missouri State JR 2B Matt Lawson: .270/.313/.352 (13/43; 17/22)

    Southern Indiana JR 2B Darin Mastroianni: .409/.484/.549 (31/22; 64/67)

    Mississippi State SR 2B Jeffrey Rea: .343/.417/.412 (29/20; 13/17)

    Texas SR 2B Nick Peoples: .329/.421/.488 (19/34; 18/23)

    Tampa JR 2B Ryan Kennedy: .387/.485/.641 (42/18; 7/11)

    Western Carolina SR 2B Kenny Smith: .390/.451/.759 (30/20; 14/16)

    Louisville SR 2B Logan Johnson: .364/.488/.663 (35/29; 9/13)

    College First Basemen: A Brief History

    Broad Conclusions

    • If recent draft trends hold, there will only be 1 or 2 major league quality bats capable of holding down a big league starting job out the entire pool of 2010 college first basemen.
    • An additional 2 or 3 major league quality bench contributors are likely to emerge from the pool of 2010 college first basemen.
    • College first basemen of America, take note: It really helps to be versatile defensively. A quick perusal of the list reveals the vast majority of MLB starting players listed below now play a big league position other than first base.
    • With 6 college first basemen taken in the first 23 overall picks, the 2008 MLB Draft was as much as an abberration as it seemed at the time. That said, the end results (only 1 or 2 major league quality bats capable of holding down a big league starting job) may yet fall in line with recent draft history. I’d personally bet the over, but with far less confidence than I had back in June 2008.
    • Between 40-60 college first basemen will be drafted in 2010.
    • Between 5-15 of those college first basemen will be drafted in the first ten rounds in 2010.

    Notes

    • Players are listed according to the position announced at the time of the draft according to the invaluable resource Baseball-Reference.
    • Individual players were not listed from the three most recent MLB Drafts (2007-2009). We’ll let their more recent professional careers breathe a little bit before deciding who will make it as big league ballplayers or not.
    • Designations between “Starters” and “Bench Contributors” (or in some cases, “Potential Bench Contributors”) are subjective in nature; players were given the benefit of the doubt in many cases, with bonus points awarded to guys who have either been a) valued enough by big league teams to receive get big league trials as starters or b) actively pursued via trade or the waiver wire. The most subjective classifications on the list are affixed to players drafted most recently; to remedy this to some degree, please feel free to disregard the mention of Strieby, Robbins, and Cooper as “Future Bench Contributors” if you disagree with those particular assessments.
    • Re-drafted players count twice because each draft year is looked at as one singular entity. This method is less helpful when solely looking back at past drafts, but comes in handy when forecasting future draft outcomes, which is the real goal of the activity.

    Breakdown

    2002 (46 college 1B total; 13 college 1B in top ten rounds)

    • Starter: Nick Swisher (1-16; Ohio State)
    • Bench Contributor: Brad Eldred (6-163; Florida International)
    • Bench Contributor: Ryan Shealy (11-321; Florida)

    Notes: Swisher was highest drafted college 1B; Prince Fielder was highest drafted 1B overall; so-called “Moneyball” draft

    2003 (42 college 1B total; 10 college 1B in top ten rounds)

    • Starter: Conor Jackson (1-19; California)

    Notes: Michael Aubrey was highest drafted college 1B (1-11; Tulane); Andy D’alessio (who went on to Clemson) was highest drafted high school 1B

    2004 (56 college 1B total; 15 college 1B in top ten rounds)

    • Starter: Adam Lind (3-83; University of South Alabama)
    • Bench Contributor: Steven Pearce (10-305; South Carolina)
    • Bench Contributor: Tommy Everidge (10-307; Sonoma State)

    Notes: Michael Ferris was highest drafted college 1B (2-60; Miami Ohio); Daryl Jones was highest drafted high school 1B

    2005 (48 college 1B total; 7 college 1B in top ten rounds)

    • Future Starter: 33-1007 Tyler Flowers (Chipola JC)
    • Potential Bench Contributor: 5-150 Jeff Larish (Arizona State)
    • Bench Contributor: 8-241 Steven Pearce (South Carolina)
    • Potential Bench Contributor: 8-246 Aaron Bates (North Carolina State)

    Notes: Stephen Head was highest drafted college 1B (2-62; Mississippi); Henry Sanchez was highest drafted high school 1B

    2006 (44 college 1B total; 11 college 1B in top ten rounds)

    • Starter: Chris Davis (5-148; Navarro College)
    • Starter: Matt LaPorta (14-433; Florida)
    • Potential Bench Contributor: Aaron Bates (3-83; North Carolina State)
    • Potential Bench Contributor: Ryan Strieby (4-112; Kentucky)
    • Potential Bench Contributor: Whit Robbins (4-119; Georgia Tech)
    • Potential Bench Contributor: Craig Cooper (7-213; Notre Dame)

    Notes: Mark Hamilton was highest drafted college 1B (2-76; Tulane); Kyle Orr was highest drafted high school 1B

    2007 (42 college 1B total; 8 college 1B in top ten rounds)

    2008 (51 college 1B total; 11 college 1B in top ten rounds)

    Notes: Yonder Alonso, Justin Smoak, Brett Wallace, David Cooper, Ike Davis, Allan Dykstra were all college 1B picked in the top 23 overall selections; the next three four-year college 1B after the sextet of first rounders included luminaries such as Mike Sheridan, Jeremy Hamilton, and Steven Caseres

    2009 (54 college 1B total; 10 college 1B in top ten rounds)

    Data

    • 46 + 42 + 56 + 48 + 44 + 42 + 51 + 54 = 383
    • There were 383 total college first basemen drafted from 2002-2009 (8 drafts)
    • 383/8 = 47.875
    • Roughly 48 college first basemen were drafted on average in that span
    • 13 +10 + 15 + 7 + 11 + 8 + 11 + 10 = 85
    • There were 85 total college first basemen drafted from 2002-2009 (8 drafts) taken in the first ten rounds
    • 85/8 = 10.625
    • Roughly 10.5 college first basemen were drafted in the first ten rounds on average in that span

    Mike Leake’s Debut

    I hate being that guy who always quotes himself, but, well, allow me to quote myself:

    Leake possesses a good fastball (sitting 88-92, peak 94), plus slider, above-average changeup, usable curve, plus command, plus control, plus athleticism, and, perhaps my personal favorite positive, intriguing potential with the bat. Can’t wait to see what he does with the Reds this season.

    Ignore all that pitching stuff (6.2 IP 4 H 1 ER 7 BB 5 K with 106 pitches — 57 for strikes — and 6 GO to 6 AO) and focus on the bolded part only. There are embarrassingly few things on this mortal earth that I love more than pitchers capable of handling the bat. Reading this quote made me all kinds of happy:

    “I was almost more excited to hit today than pitch,” Leake said.

    Again, ignore that totally unimportant pitching part (6.2 IP 4 H 1 ER 7 BB 5 K with 106 pitches — 57 for strikes — and 6 GO to 6 AO) and focus on what really matters. At the plate, Mike Leake went 2-2 with a pair of singles. That’s good for a 1.000 batting average, people! I’ve read that Leake’s hat is heading to the Hall of Fame, but if it were up to me you’d better be sure it would be his batting helmet making its way to Cooperstown instead.

    On a slightly more serious note, here’s the current plan outlining what is in store this week. All entries are subject to change, and, as always, requests are always encouraged.

    Plan of Attack for Week of April 12, 2010

    • Who Will Be Drafted? Atlantic 10 Edition
    • Positional Rankings (position TBD…college lefties, maybe?)
    • Alternate Reality Mock Draft (expect this on Friday, the only day of the week I actually have planned out already)
    • Mystery Draft 2.0
    • More Data!
    • Responses to all comments that I missed this past week

    Mike Leake = Big Leaguer

    A look back through the archives at what has been written at this very site about the newest member of the Cincinnati Reds starting rotation. The evolution of former Arizona State prospect and current big leaguer Mike Leake as seen through the lens of a nobody amateur draft prognosticator…

    February 20, 2009

    Leake was ranked 11th on my first ever published list of draft-eligible college players. Not bad, right? Just ignore the fact that he was sandwiched between Indiana’s Josh Phegley (a player I still like, but clearly not a prospect on Leake’s level) and the pitching version of Long Island’s James Jones, a player eventually drafted by Seattle as a toolsy outfielder. My evaluation of him at the time included the following defense of the “controversial” at the time ranking of Leake over Baylor’s Kendal Volz:

    Leake over Volz is a little strange, but it came down to present plus command and movement over potential power plus stuff across the board.

    February 27, 2009

    One week later I noted the way Leake outdueled fellow future first round pick Kyle Gibson. Leake’s numbers that day: 8 IP 1 H 0 ER 1 BB 10 K (11 GO/2 AO). Also noted at the time was Leake’s stellar groundball numbers: 19 of his 23 batted ball outs at that point in the season came on the ground.

    March 3, 2009

    This is where things starting to get hot and heavy with the Leake lovefest. His ranking (6th on a list of 2009 draft-eligible righthanded college pitchers) may not seem all that impressive, but keep in mind that meant only Aaron Crow, Tanner Scheppers, Kyle Gibson, Alex White, and Stephen Strasburg were ahead of him. Not a bad list of pitchers to fall behind, all things considered. His quick scouting report at the time looked like this:

    Leake literally has everything I look for in a pitching prospect. Let’s do it bullet point style:

    • Plus athleticism – has played first, second, short, and every outfield position as a Sun Devil
    • Ability to handle the bat – hit .340/.500/.574 in 47 at bats last season (12/9 walk to strikeout ratio)
    • Groundball inducing stuff – so far this season, 19 of his 23 non-K outs recorded have come on the ground
    • Plus secondary pitch – slider works better as another groundball inducing weapon, but it also creates plenty of swings and misses
    • Above-average third pitch – his changeup is nearly as good as his slider
    • Plus command – his ability to spot any of his three pitches has earned him universal praise from scouts
    • Plus control – roughly 1.75 BB/9 in his college career
    • Plus makeup/competitiveness – only good things have been said by scouts, coaches, teammates, and parents about Leake’s drive to succeed and strong work ethic

    What Leake is missing is an ideal frame (he’s 6-0, 180), an overpowering fastball (sits 89-92), and a whole lot of room for growth. I’d argue the last point a bit because I think any two-way player stands to gain a little something once they begin to focus solely on one aspect of the game, but, on the whole, those negatives are fair criticisms of Leake’s game. Fortunately, a blazing hot fastball and a “prototypical pitcher’s frame” each fall very low on the list of things I care about. A high radar gun reading on a fastball is a good thing, don’t get me wrong, but good fastball movement (something Leake has in spades) trumps good fastball speed every time. There is something to be said about a physical frame that needs filling out eventually producing a better fastball down the road, sure, but many college pitchers are what they are by their junior seasons anyway. The backlash against short righthanders is not grounded in empirical research, so I tend to actually look at short righthanded pitching as being a potentially undervalued asset in the draft every year. Yes, I just spun Leake’s lack of height as a positive. Your mileage might vary with that part of the assessment.

    One industry comp and one personal comp for Leake before we wrap this thing up. First, my slightly off the wall comparison – highly-touted Japanese prospect Yu Darvish. Darvish has four inches on Leake and throws a knuckle-curve, but they have similar stuff (sinker, slider, change) otherwise. The better comparison may be the more common one – a lesser Tim Hudson, right down to the two-way talent shown at the college level. You could do worse than a poor man’s Tim Hudson come draft day.

    My first prediction of where Leake would wind up drafted came at the end of the piece. Wasn’t quite on the money, but the guess worked pretty well for an early March estimate:

    There will be sexier options on draft day for teams picking in the mid- to late first round, but there may not be as sure a bet to be a dependable major leaguer as Leake. I bet he is a target of teams with multiple high picks (Arizona) and mid-market franchises picking in the late teens/early twenties (St. Louis, Toronto, Houston).

    March 10, 2009

    When I updated the college big board with report card grades (a good idea for 2010 come to think of it), Leake received high praise:

    11. Mike Leake – RHSP – Arizona State – One of the easiest grades to assign, Leake’s been phenomenal through three starts so far… A+

    March 22, 2009

    I can’t believe there is any doubt that Mike Leake has a first round caliber arm. His latest outing was excellent: 9 IP 5 H 1 ER 1 BB 15 K in a win over rival Arizona. His season numbers are pristine (48/7 strikeout to walk numbers in 40 innings of 1.35 ERA pitching) and his scouting reports have been positive all spring long.

    April 2, 2009

    Leake may be my favorite prospect in all the draft, but I’m not sure how much my opinion matters to teams drafting in the first round…yes, he’s a very good prospect and an almost sure-fire first rounder, but I don’t want my inflated opinion of him getting in the way of properly assessing his relative value.

    May 8, 2009

    Predicted Leake would go to Colorado with the 11th pick in the first round one month ahead of the draft

    June 5, 2009

    Stuck with Leake to Colorado with the 11th pick in last mock before the big day

    June 9, 2009

    Fourth on my last Big Board leading up to the draft! Fourth! My love of Leake as a prospect seemingly grew with every passing week. Nothing has changed from the glowing scouting report posted above. Leake possesses a good fastball (sitting 88-92, peak 94), plus slider, above-average changeup, usable curve, plus command, plus control, plus athleticism, and, perhaps my personal favorite positive, intriguing potential with the bat. Can’t wait to see what he does with the Reds this season.

    Shadow Drafting – 2007, 2008, and 2009

    A quick look back at some of my own brief forays into shadow drafting for the Philadelphia Phillies. This is almost surely one of those pieces that interests me way more than it could ever interest anybody else, but I think it has some value in that it give some sort of idea of which style of player I’ve liked over the past few years. I’d say grabbing guys like Main, Griffith, Melville, and Seaton all within the first two rounds the past two years would qualify as a bit of a draft trend, as would the selections of Jackson, Hood, and Westmoreland. Who knew I was so in love with prep righthanded pitching and super toolsy high school position players? I wouldn’t have said I feel all that strongly about either type of player, but it’s all right there in black and white. Interesting.

    2007

    1.19 – RHSP Michael Main (LHSP Joe Savery)
    1S.37 – SS Justin Jackson (C Travis D’Arnaud)
    2.83 – RHSP Nevin Griffith (3B Travis Mattair)

    2008

    (Republished from another archived Gmail – yes, this is what I email people about…sad, but true)

    I tried my hand at the shadowing the Phillies draft this year in real-time. This was what I would have done and not necessarily what I would have guessed the Phillies would do. You can look at it two ways – where the guys wound up getting picked today (semi-useful, but not really) or what will become of these guys years down the road (the better way, but who’s got the patience?). I freaking love Seaton and thought the Phillies would be all over him – they trust their area scouts in Texas above pretty much any other region. I think I like Hood more than Collier personally, but it’s really close. Putnam dropped because of injury or something, Melville due to signability. Westmoreland has a Rocco Baldelli comp (maybe only since both are from Rhode Island), Martinez was a first rounder two months ago who stunk up the joint his senior year and will now most likely go to Miami for college ball, and St. Clair was a teammate of Savery’s at Rice who I’ve been a gigantic fan of for three years now. Amazingly enough, the Phillies and I were of the same mind when it came to picking Hamilton and Shreve…weird stuff, but I like the picks, especially the selection of Shreve, a first round caliber talent who could be the steal of the entire draft (I don’t say that lightly).

    1.24 Tim Melville RHP
    S.34 Ross Seaton RHP
    2.51 Destin Hood OF
    2.71 Zach Putnam RHP
    3.102 Ryan Westmoreland OF
    3.110 Harold Martinez 3B
    4.136 Cole St. Clair LHP
    5.166 Jeremy Hamilton 1B
    6.196 Colby Shreve RHP

    Now, real life:

    1.24 Anthony Hewitt 3B
    S.34 Zach Collier OF
    2.51 Anthony Gose OF
    2.71 Jason Knapp RHP
    3.102 Vance Worley RHP
    3.110 Jonathan Pettibone RHP
    4.136 Trevor May RHP
    5.166 Jeremy Hamilton 1B
    6.196 Colby Shreve RHP

    2009

    I can’t decide if I want to continue doing the Phillies (their first pick is a loooooong wait from the front of the draft) or if I want to choose a different team this year to mix things up. Ideally, the team would have picks in nearly every round at or around the mid-point of each round. This may be a gametime decision.