Thursday, August 2, 2012

Season 3 Draft Review

1. Frank Zhang (C), Salt Lake City - with the first pick in the draft, Salt Lake selected a catcher with the potential to anchor a batting order for years to come. Although currently unsigned, and probably a couple of years away from the show, Zhang is as close to a can`t miss backstop prospect as you will ever see.

Real Life comparison: Mike Piazza

2. Ike Spehr (P), Florida - with the second pick, Florida selected arguably the best pitching prospect available. In Spehr they are getting a pitcher that mixes four solid pitches, remarkable accuracy, and who has been particularly devastating to right handed hitters. He should end up as a 1 or high end 2 in Florida`s rotation.

Real Life comparison: Jered Weaver
3. Jamie Levis (P), Texas - with the third pick, Texas aimed to shore up their bullpen, and did so in a big way with this player. Levis is particularly nasty to left handed hitters, and sports two plus pitches along with excellent location. Likely closer down the road for Texas. Caveat: apparently 6`3 206 kids are basketball material in the world of WIS, so signing this player may prove a bit tricky...

Real Life comparison: Billy Wagner
4. Terry Leach (SS), Oakland - with the fourth pick, Oakland went a bit longer term with a high-school shortstop that may end up as a 2B or outfielder when all is said and done. Regardless of final position, Leach exhibits an excellent glove, and a good combination of contact and power that should make him successful once he makes the show.

Real Life comparison: Aaron Hill
5. Shane Nunnally (LF), Louisville - with the fifth pick, Louisville again used their top selection on an outfielder. Nunnally, however, has the potential to be the best of the bunch, combining a sharp eye with prodigious power. He should anchor Louisville`s offense for 10-15 years...

Real Life comparison: Jose Bautista
6. Eugene Marte (SS), Ottawa - with the sixth pick, Ottawa also went to the high school shortstop well. In Marte, they get a prospect with good-not-great potential in all five tools. He`ll play, he`ll hit, and he`ll field... the question with all three will simply be how much.

Real Life comparison: Miguel Tejada
7. Jesus Marcado (P), Chicago - with the seventh pick, Chicago opted for an arm that should find a home in their rotation when all is said and done. Although a bit vulnerable to left handed hitters in his amateur career, Marcado`s pinpoint control and overall ability should more than make up for that particular issue.

Real Life comparison: Wandy Rodriguez
8. Claude Ramirez (SS), Tampa Bay - with the eighth pick, Tampa Bay opted for a shortstop built in the mold of Maury Wills. Although Ramirez is solid overall with no clear weaknesses, his combination of keen eye and ridiculously fast legs mean that he should be terrorizing catchers for years to come.

 Real Life comparison: Dee Gordon

9. Wandy Telemaco (P), New York - with the ninth pick, New York opted for a high school arm with good long term potential. Fun facts: Telemaco enjoys flamenco dancing, is a huge Ricky Martin fan, and particularly enjoys showering with his teammates after games.

Real Life comparison: AJ Burnett
10. Takahiro Pong (2B), Atlanta - with the tenth pick, Atlanta made history by selecting the first player named Takahiro ever to be drafted out of the state of Wisconsin. Pong`s glove is nothing to write home about, but his hitting ability and impressive power make this a solid pick.

Real Life comparison: Eric Chavez
11. Victor Smith (P), Pittsburgh - with the eleventh pick, Pittsburgh selected an arm that may be the steal of the draft. Smith projects as a high-end starter capable of pinpoint accuracy, which will be particularly tough on left handed hitters. Pittsburgh couldn`t be happier that a prospect like this fell out of the top 10.

Real Life comparison: Joe Saunders
12. Lloyd Strange (SS), Detroit - with the twelfth pick, Detroit opted for defense, selecting a college shortstop that should very soon provide them with an anchor for their infield defense. Strange`s eye and speed are both above average, making him a very useful player to have on the roster.

Real Life comparison: Brendan Ryan
13. Jimmie Jenkins (CF), Los Angeles - with the thirteenth pick, LA also went for speed and defense in Jenkins. He should spend most of his time challenging Ramirez for the MLB lead in stolen basis, while at the same time providing excellent range and quality defense in center for his team.

Real Life comparison: Raja Davis

14. Todd Blackmon (2B), New Orleans - with the fourteenth pick, New Orleans snuck away with another player that could leave other teams wondering how they missed him. With plus range, speed, and plate knowledge, Blackmon should be a player that does all the little things right, leaving his team very happy as long as they don’t go looking to him as a power source.

Real Life comparison: Dustin Ackley

15. Rafael Picasso (P), Salem - with the fifteenth pick, Salem opted for a high-school arm with long term closing ability. Nicknamed ``Michelangelo``, Picasso projects as a closer with an ability to dominate hitters from either side of the plate. Quality, under the radar selection by Salem.

Real Life comparison: Mariano Rivera

16. Diory Cedeno (P), St. Louis - with the sixteenth pick, St. Louis selected another arm with the potential to deliver quality innings from the rotation. Cedeno may get knocked around from time to time, but control has never been an issue, and he projects to end up with two plus pitches that should for the most part keep hitters off-balance.

Real Life comparison: Matt Harrsion
17. David Guerrero (P), Nasvhille - with the seventeenth pick, Nashville selected another arm that should have a long and productive career in the show. Guerrero`s curveball has the potential to be one of the best in baseball, although whether he ends up in the rotation or a valuable member of the pen remains to be seen.

 Real Life comparison: Joba Chamberlain

18. Dave Haywood (RF), Boston - with the eighteenth pick, Boston apparently selected the least well-known member of country band Lady Antebellum. Boston should do everything it can to try to sign Haywood, as his ability to put the ball in play combined with his wheels suggest that he has real top of the order potential.

Real Life comparison: Jay Bruce
19. Brian Lambert (RF), Philadelphia - with the nineteenth pick, Philly selected an outfielder who will be ready sooner than most in the draft. At 22, Lambert already exhibits decent range in the outfield, and is particularly adept at mashing against southpaws. On the downside, he is also being scouted to play pro hockey. On the plus side, his agent is Tom Glavine.

Real Life comparison: Not Scouted
20. Jumbo Seneca (LF), Nashville - with the twentieth pick, Nashville also selected a soon-ready outfielder with good overall ability. Seneca has a particular ability to hit right handed hitters, suggesting that if Philadelphia and Nashville were ever to make a trade in a year or two, one of them could end up with one helluva good platoon.... or not.

Real Life comparison: Andre Ethier
21. Domingo Fuentes (P), Syracuse - with the twenty-first pick, Syracuse selected a pitcher with a vicious heater and marksman like control. The only problem with this player is the reluctance to leave college, but rumor is the Syracuse owner is organizing a hookers-and-blow party as we speak to seal the deal.

Real Life comparison: Not Scouted
22. Tyrone O`Connor (P), Mexico City - with the twenty-second pick, Mexico City selected an arm with back of the rotation potential. O`Connor is a bit vulnerable to left handed hitters, but has a good enough fastball and control that he should be able to carve out a career for himself at the big-league level.

Real Life comparison: Jason Vargas
23. Joseph Meng (P), Louisville - in Meng, Louisville acquire an arm with serious inning eating potential. The only question is whether those innings will be eaten at the MLB or AAA level. Although Meng has three quality pitches, he has shown an alarming tendency to get his titties lit when facing all left handed hitters not named Craig Counsell.

Real Life comparison: Hector Noesi
24. Bip Torres (P), Cheyenne - with the twenty fourth pick, Cheyenne grabbed another candidate for sleeper of the draft. Torres has two quality pitches, and has thus far limited hitters from both sides of the plate very effectively. Should develop into a nice 3-4 starter for Cheyenne.

Real Life comparison: Jason Marquis
25. Chris Benson (CF), New Britain - with the twenty-fifth pick, New Britain selected a power hitting, slick fielding second baseman with the potential to steal more than the odd bag. Speaking of odd, could somebody please explain to me what the hell a team named the Angry Birds is doing drafting a player with a patience potential of 99, and a temper of 0. Odd...

Real Life comparison: Alex Rios
26. Roosevelt Vosberg (P), Las Vegas - with the twenty-sixth pick, Las Vegas opted for a flame throwing reliever who is particularly hard on right handed hitters. Whether he closes or sets up, Vosberg has the potential to be a nasty piece of work out of the  Las Vegas pen.

Real Life comparison: Jonathon Broxton
27. AJ Tabaka (3B), Cheyenne - with the twenty-seventh pick, Cheyenne took the first 3B of the draft, and out of high school at that. Tabaka has an excellent glove and runs very well for a third baseman, but his penchant for strikeouts and rumored interest in college ball does serve to temper the potential a little.

Real Life comparison: Mike Aviles
28. Karim Morgan (P), Norfolk - with the twenty-eight pick, Norfolk selected a junkballer with back of the rotation potential. There are no glaring weaknesses here, but also nothing to get hugely excited about. Should be a serviceable starter when fully developed.

Real Life comparison: Joe Blanton
29. Bart Harding (P), Columbus - with the twenty-ninth pick, Columbus selected an arm with great control and inning eating capabilities. However, like Joseph Meng, Harding has thus far gone to pieces when facing a steady diet of left handed hitters. Time will tell if that can be rectified enough for him to contribute in Columbus.

Real Life comparison: Ivan Nova

30. JJ Harper (SS), Columbus - with the thirtieth pick, Columbus selected another shortstop who may end up elsewhere on the infield when fully developed. Harper has enough hitting ability to stick, and should get on base a fair amount, but at this point he doesn’t appear to have the defensive ability to anchor an infield.

Real Life comparison: Wilson Betemit
31. Ricky Donovan (3B), Scranton - with the thirty first pick, Scranton grabbed another high school third baseman with good defensive ability. Though Donovan puts the ball in play with good regularity, his upside appears to be as a utility man in the mold of a Bill Spiers.

Real Life comparison: Bill Spiers
  32. Gaylord Young (2B), Boise - with the thirty second pick, Boise selected a second basemen out of high-school in Washington State. Boise may convert him to an outfielder based on defensive ability, but the bigger question is whether he will hit enough to justify a starting spot in the show

Real Life comparison: 

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