Saturday, June 07, 2008

MLB DRAFT - POST MORTEM



More than any other year in the 10+ years that I've been following the draft, it seems as if there was a much greater emphasis on college players over HS players than ever before.

Whether this is a residual effect of the current crop of "Moneyball" GM's making their marks on teams scouting department or just an attempt to shift developmental costs from their own minor league systems to the colleges, I'm not sure. Time will tell.

From an economic standpoint, it makes some good common sense. A lot of these guys can take 2-3 years to develop and mature (student-athletes are eligible for the draft after HS in 2 years if enrolled in a junior college and 3 years if enrolled in a four year program).

For hitters, there seems to be no downside. The pros are a little more leery about trusting premium HS pitching arms to the whims of college coaches however. We'll have to see if the numbers reflected this year were just an anomaly or a trend that continues. More and more, the college game is being televised on cable packages, so some of these guys are coming into the pros with a more developed reputation than in the past as well.

The other trend I do like about the draft is the compensation picks for losing free-agents. I think it has helped the smaller market teams recover and rebuild faster than ever before.

I would suggest one more enhancement to the draft, we can call it The Slavik Plan for Competitive Balance, and that is to instead of simply tying the draft order to the teams prior year record, a formula is developed that also includes the teams prior year payroll as well. In this way, if in any given year the Yankees or the Sawks fall off the cliff due to injuries to key players, and finish with the worst record in baseball, they would in no way draft first. No more Brian Taylor to the Yankees, although that one didn't work out to well.

There may have to be some sort of horse-trading with the players union on this, since it's tied to salary, but I think if you added a minimum team salary that teams would have to surpass, then this would compress the team's together even further in terms of competition on the field.

At least the small market teams would have some measure of hope of catching lightning in a bottle with their younger talent versus the large market teams more established veteran talent.

I'm sure the agents would continue to "game" the system with outrageous salary demands to drive their clients to the desired team, but you could add some sort of "loss of future draft picks" provision for going over slot guidelines.

Anyway it's worth a try. We'll have to see what develops down the road.
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UPDATE ON GIANTS DRAFT-PICKS FROM:

http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2008/06/06/SPON114Q8C.DTL&feed=rss.giants

Great to see Giants, A's picks giving it the ol' college try
Bruce Jenkins, San Francisco Chronicle
Saturday, June 7, 2008

Posey, the Florida State catcher chosen fifth overall by the Giants on Thursday, is almost too good to be true. He's an exceptionally well-mannered kid who only wants to talk about his teammates. He's a dean's-list student with a near-perfect GPA and a long-term future in finance. When you learn that he has excelled as a catcher, shortstop and pitcher in college, you're not surprised that in a game against Savannah State last month, he played all nine positions, looking comfortable with every switch.

"I'll tell anybody that will listen," said Mike Martin, who has coached the Seminoles for 29 years. "He's Jason Varitek behind the plate and he's Derek Jeter as a hitter. I really believe he's that good."

Baseball America recently rated Posey as the No. 2 pure hitter in college ball. Its No. 3 choice was Gillaspie, the Wichita State third baseman taken by San Francisco as the 37th overall selection. A left-handed hitter batting out of a low crouch, hands back, the bat pointing straight up, he's the picture of balance. He drilled a dead-pull single to right early in the game, then wisely played to the conditions (wind blowing out to left) for a three-run, opposite-field homer in the sixth
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Giants Top Minor League Prospects

  • 1. Joey Bart 6-2, 215 C Power arm and a power bat, playing a premium defensive position. Good catch and throw skills.
  • 2. Heliot Ramos 6-2, 185 OF Potential high-ceiling player the Giants have been looking for. Great bat speed, early returns were impressive.
  • 3. Chris Shaw 6-3. 230 1B Lefty power bat, limited defensively to 1B, Matt Adams comp?
  • 4. Tyler Beede 6-4, 215 RHP from Vanderbilt projects as top of the rotation starter when he works out his command/control issues. When he misses, he misses by a bunch.
  • 5. Stephen Duggar 6-1, 170 CF Another toolsy, under-achieving OF in the Gary Brown mold, hoping for better results.
  • 6. Sandro Fabian 6-0, 180 OF Dominican signee from 2014, shows some pop in his bat. Below average arm and lack of speed should push him towards LF.
  • 7. Aramis Garcia 6-2, 220 C from Florida INTL projects as a good bat behind the dish with enough defensive skill to play there long-term
  • 8. Heath Quinn 6-2, 190 OF Strong hitter, makes contact with improving approach at the plate. Returns from hamate bone injury.
  • 9. Garrett Williams 6-1, 205 LHP Former Oklahoma standout, Giants prototype, low-ceiling, high-floor prospect.
  • 10. Shaun Anderson 6-4, 225 RHP Large frame, 3.36 K/BB rate. Can start or relieve
  • 11. Jacob Gonzalez 6-3, 190 3B Good pedigree, impressive bat for HS prospect.
  • 12. Seth Corry 6-2 195 LHP Highly regard HS pick. Was mentioned as possible chip in high profile trades.
  • 13. C.J. Hinojosa 5-10, 175 SS Scrappy IF prospect in the mold of Kelby Tomlinson, just gets it done.
  • 14. Garett Cave 6-4, 200 RHP He misses a lot of bats and at times, the plate. 13 K/9 an 5 B/9. Wild thing.

2019 MLB Draft - Top HS Draft Prospects

  • 1. Bobby Witt, Jr. 6-1,185 SS Colleyville Heritage HS (TX) Oklahoma commit. Outstanding defensive SS who can hit. 6.4 speed in 60 yd. Touched 97 on mound. Son of former major leaguer. Five tool potential.
  • 2. Riley Greene 6-2, 190 OF Haggerty HS (FL) Florida commit.Best HS hitting prospect. LH bat with good eye, plate discipline and developing power.
  • 3. C.J. Abrams 6-2, 180 SS Blessed Trinity HS (GA) High-ceiling athlete. 70 speed with plus arm. Hitting needs to develop as he matures. Alabama commit.
  • 4. Reece Hinds 6-4, 210 SS Niceville HS (FL) Power bat, committed to LSU. Plus arm, solid enough bat to move to 3B down the road. 98MPH arm.
  • 5. Daniel Espino 6-3, 200 RHP Georgia Premie Academy (GA) LSU commit. Touches 98 on FB with wipe out SL.

2019 MLB Draft - Top College Draft Prospects

  • 1. Adley Rutschman C Oregon State Plus defender with great arm. Excellent receiver plus a switch hitter with some pop in the bat.
  • 2. Shea Langliers C Baylor Excelent throw and catch skills with good pop time. Quick bat, uses all fields approach with some pop.
  • 3. Zack Thompson 6-2 LHP Kentucky Missed time with an elbow issue. FB up to 95 with plenty of secondary stuff.
  • 4. Matt Wallner 6-5 OF Southern Miss Run producing bat plus mid to upper 90's FB closer. Power bat from the left side, athletic for size.
  • 5. Nick Lodolo LHP TCU Tall LHP, 95MPH FB and solid breaking stuff.