2010 MLB Draft Recap: Harper Goes First...Cards, Angels, and Rays Big Winners
All day long, I'll be updating the 2010 MLB draft via running article/blog.
Hopefully, they'll be some good news coming out later today clarifying what's going to go down after the Nationals pop Bryce Harper at number one.
And come 7 p.m., I'll be there with instant analysis of each of the picks from the first-round.
Also, I'm no expert, but if you have any questions, let 'em fly!
10:40 p.m. The compensation round went really quick, and here's how things went down:
33) Astros- Michael Kvasnicka- catcher from Minnesota was a late-riser, who almost made it into the first-round.
34) Blue Jays- Aaron Sanchez- RHP from Barstow HS.
35) Braves- Matthew Lipka- highly touted prep SS from Texas.
36) Red Sox- Bryce Brentz- toosly outfielder who had first-round talent.
37) Angels- Taylor Lindsay- prep SS from Arizona.
38) Blue Jays- Noah Syndergaard- big right-handed prep-ster from Texas.
39) Red Sox- Anthony Ranaudo- top five pick going into 2010. Could be a huge steal if he pans out.
40) Angels- Ryan Bolden- center-fielder from Madison Central HS.
41) Blue Jays- Asher Wojciechowski- another top 15 talent. Could be a middle of rotation starter.
42) Rays- Drew Vettleson- switch-pitcher who profiles best as an outfielder.
43) Mariners- Taijuan Walker- RHP from Yucaipa HS.
44) Tigers- Nick Castellanos- YES!!! One of my top five faves from this draft. Tigers got a steal.
45) Rangers- Luke Jackson- RHP from Calvary Christian.
46) Cardinals- Seth Blair- Cards get a solid college arm.
47) Rockies- Peter Tago- surprised Angels didn't go after him. Rockies get a high-ceiling arm.
48) Tigers- Chance Ruffin- guess those Ruffin to the Reds rumors at number 12 were off just a bit.
49) Rangers- Mike Olt- third baseman from UConn.
50) Cardinals- Tyrell Jenkins- one of the top athletes in the 201 draft. High ceiling, but it will take him a while to reach it.
10:00 p.m. The first-round ends with Cito Culver going to the Yankees.
Culver showed up on the radar as a shortstop, but has since switched to pitching, where he offers low 90s heat. More notably, he's a tiny little dude, barely 6'1'' and maybe 170 pounds drenching wet.
Culver could end up back at shortstop with the Yankees, or even moved to the outfield, where he played a little during his high school days.
And that, ladies and gentlemen...ends round number one.
9:53 p.m. There was talk earlier today about the Rays pulling the trigger on Grandal if he fell to them, but Grandal went 12th. The Rays got a pretty good consolation prize in prep catcher Justin O'Conner, widely regarded as the second-best "true" catcher in the draft.
O'Conner started out as a power-hitting third-baseman, but made waves when he moved behind the plate. His hitting prowess improved and he showed considerable aptitude behind the plate, including stellar pop times to second.
Baseball America labeled him as a "potential All-Star" in their draft preview edition.
9:49 p.m. The Angels take Chevy Chase....oh, wait...I'm sorry....Chevy Clarke with their third pick of round one.
Clarke is that same athletic guy that the Angels love, with speed to burn, on the basepaths and in center-field.
He's a switch-hitter (woohoo!) who's got some pretty decent pop hiding in his bat.
He's likely a few years away from reaching his power potential, but much like with Mike Trout, his speed will keep the Angels satiated until the power arrives.
Adding Clarke to an organization that includes Trout, Peter Bourjos, Randal Grichuk and Chris Pettit is just icing on the cake.
9:44 p.m. Cam Bedrosian became the sixth high school pitcher off the board in the first-round when the Angels just tabbed him. This is the second of three first-round picks for the Halos.
Getting Cowart and Bedrosian in the same draft is quite a steal, and it looks like the Angels are well on their way to equaling the fantastic job they did last year when they snatched Mike Trout and Randal Grichuk.
Gotta love when free agents leave you with draft picks.
I'm stoked to see if they add another prep arm at number 30.
9:37 p.m. Yet another college QB gone the way of the dinosaur...maybe. High Schooler Zach Lee was taken with the 28th pick by the Dodgers, and he projects to be one of the more difficult signees in this draft class.
He reportedly is asking for at least $3 million to forgo his commitment to LSU, and you have to figure if any organization CAN'T make that happen it would be the cash strapped Dodgers, who are in the midst of an ugly divorce battle between owners.
If Lee does end up with L.A., he'll be bringing a low 90s fastball that could jump to the mid 90s once he fills out his wiry frame.
The best thing to like about Lee, according to BA, is his repeatable delivery, something most high schoolers (including #2 pick Jameson Taillon) struggle with.
9:34 p.m. Another personal fave, and another perfect match, Germantown RHP Jesse Biddle gets popped by the Phillies.
Biddle made headlines with his ridiculous strikeout numbers this year and was one of the most underrated prep pitchers in the draft.
I'd have to agree that he's now the best pitching prospect in the Philadelphia organization, and a much needed replacement for Kyle Drabek, who's now lighting it up for the Blue Jays.
9:28 p.m. Yet another match made in heaven...or at least in the Rockies. Kyle Parker to Colorado with the 26th pick.
Parker has a commitment to the Clemson football team as their starting QB, but getting a million dollar bonus combined with Clemson's shaky o-line should be enough to convince him to take up baseball full-time.
Parker offers above-average power, but not necessarily a swing that is conducive to hitting for a high average. He won't give you much speed, and his arm and range in the outfield are not too great, but his bat could play at Coors.
An interesting note...Parker hit a home run tonight. Not only did he get drafted and homer on the same night, but as Peter Gammons just noted, he's the first two-sport athlete to hit 20 home runs and thrown 20 touchdowns in the same year.
9:20 p.m. I had no idea the draft would be so....loosey-goosey. Come on Bud, harping at Harold Reynolds. Pipe down.
Anyway, the Cardinals just pulled the trigger on Zack Cox. Finally!
Cox is the top college bat available, and the Cards got a steal with him at number 25. You can tell the Cards were smarting from dealing Brett Wallace and were looking for a replacement.
I'm kinda worried about the long-term future of my boy David Freese though. He's been a baller for my fantasy team. Cox offers a better bat though, and comparable if not better power.
Cox should go down as the biggest steal of the draft, and the Cards should put him to work right away, maybe giving him a taste of short-season ball before placing him in low-A.
9:15 p.m. The picks just keep on rolling, and the Giants have selected Gary Brown, center-fielder from Cal State-Fullerton. Reading an article on Brown recently opened my eyes to the electrifying speedster.
He's got Ichiro speed out of the box, and has true top notch speed.
The knock on Brown has constantly been his hitting ability, but this year he exploded with a .438 average. He somehow managed only nine walks in 48 games, but only 12 strikeouts as well, leading you to believe that he likes to swing the bat.
He doesn't offer much power and he pretty much lucked into hitting six home runs this past year, but his hitting ability and his speed, coupled with his superior defensive ability should allow him to become a lineup regular.
9:10 p.m. Interestingly enough, after the Skipworth comp, the Marlins pick and tab Christian Yelich, the top first-base prospect in the draft.
Yeah, the Marlins have Gaby Sanchez and Logan Morrison, but apparently they know, or think, something about Yelich that no one picking ahead of them did. Yelich comps to a James Loney or Casey Kotchman type player, with decent power (15-20 home runs) but a more solid batting average (.290-.310).
He's got some decent speed, so the Fish might be able to squeeze 10-15 steals a year out of him.
9:05 p.m. Oh Canada! Oh Canada!
The Rangers went with Canadian catcher Kellin Deglan with their second pick of the first-round. Most likely another money pick, Deglan has some pretty serious talent. In terms of defense, Deglan is one of the best in the draft.
Built similarly to 2007 pick Kyle Skipworth, I can only hope that Deglan avoids the prolonged slump that struck the Marlins first-round pick.
His bat seems decent, and he has a pretty good shot to hit for average to above-average power, but it all depends on whether or not he can make solid contact.
8:58 p.m. THE dream scenario for the Minnesota Twins just happened, when THE right-hander from THE Ohio State University Alex Wimmers dropped eight to ten spots from where he was projected right into their lap.
Wimmers had possibly the best season of any of the college pitchers. He didn't lose a game, had a 1.60 ERA and 86 strikeouts in only 73 innings. He only pitched 73 innings due to a injured hamstring, but showed some real grit when he came back and pitched seven strong innings over the course of back-to-back days.
Unfortunately, Ohio State didn't play too well when Wimmers didn't pitch, and the Buckeyes season was cut short, depriving us from getting a post-season look at Wimmers.
8:53 p.m. Kolbrin Vitek, another personal fave, just went off the board to the Red Sox. Vitek has an excellent feel for hitting, and projects for some decent power. He also benefits from playing second base, which isn't necessarily a deep position in this year's draft.
Much talk had the Sox going for Anthony Ranaudo, but it appears they too were scared away by his miserable late season performances. Or maybe they figure they can get him later, and Vitek was just too good to pass up.
The Sox don't necessarily have a ton of depth at second in their system, or at third for that matter, so having Vitek to team with Cuban superstar Jose Iglesias will give the Sox one of the most talented double-play combo in the minors.
8:48 p.m. It seems like teams are finally getting the hold of this draft thing. One-quarter of the 20 picks so far have been high-school pitchers.
The Astros, with their second pick of the round, took Mike Foltynewicz, a 6'4'' 190 pound right-hander from Minooka Comminuty HS in Illinois. Props to a guy who's from "Minooka."
Folty features a super-advanced changeup, which will instantly make him the darling of the Astros organization. He compliments it with a mid 90s fastball that tops out at 96. With a little more meat on his bones you'd have to figure he could crank it up a mile or two.
Folty does have a commitment to Texas in his back pocket, and it wouldn't surprise me if he fulfilled it. He could probably benefit from a few years of college fine-tuning.
8:43 p.m. Is it just me or does Cirque-de-Sale work as the best nickname so far from the 2010 draft?
The Angels used their first of THREE first-round picks on Kaleb Cowart, another pitcher I'm incredibly high on. Cowart is reportedly asking for a crap-load of money and the Angels might not want to offer $3 million to a high-schooler as the 18th pick, but luckily they have picks 29 and 30.
Back to Cowart. A talented two-way player, he looks the part of a pitcher, and his low 90s fastball and he pares it well with a nifty slider and a splitter.
Other high profile names still out there include Zack Cox, Asher Wojciechowski, Kolbrin Vitek, and Alex Wimmers.
8:39 p.m. It only took an hour and forty minutes, but Josh Sale finally went off the board, to the Rays. And the rich get richer.
Sale is the best high school hitter in this draft, and his power rivals many of the top college hitters, including Michael Choice.
Adding him to the Rays, when they already have Desmond Jennings, Carl Crawford, B.J. Upton and Matt Joyce just seems unfair. But, with Crawford most likely leaving after this season, Jennings will step in, and that leaves Sale as the top outfield prospect in the system.
8:33 p.m. The Cubs throw a major curveball, and tab right-hander Hayden Simpson. If you're saying "Who?" don't feel bad, you're not the only one.
Simpson was rated as the 91st best righty in the draft by BA. Simpson pitched for Division II Southern Arkansas and finished as the runner-up for the D-II Player of the Year award after a season in which he went 13-1 with a 1.81 ERA. He struck out 131 in only 99.1 innings and tossed six complete games, including three shutouts.
8:30 p.m. With the compensation pick from failing to sign Matt Purke last year, the Rangers took outfielder Jake Skole. Skole looks like the first true "money pick" and you can't really blame the Rangers for that. If they fail to sign Skole, they don't get another compensation pick.
Skole gained momentum really fast these past few days, most likely due to his signability. He's athletic and is the kind of guy you see the Rays look at.
As for Purke, last year's unsigned pick, he did pretty well for himself this year. A 13-0 record, a 3.40 ERA, and 122 strikeouts in 95.1 innings. He only issued 27 walks.
8:21 p.m. Another prep arm off the charts in Pasadena's Dylan Covey. Covey features a mid 90s fastball and a good slider. His changeup and curve are works in progress, but have the makings of at least average offerings.
The Brewers are possibly the most pitching starved organization in the majors, so it was no big surprise to see them tab a high-ceiling pitcher. Covey isn't a huge dude (only 6'2'' and 200 lbs) but he's pretty durable and BA has him tabbed as a probably No. 2-3 starter.
The pitcher Covey is most likened to is San Fran's Matt Cain.
Not a bad comp.
Hopefully, in their desperation to get big league help, they don't move Covey too early.
8:15 p.m. Chris Sale!!! Alrighty, now we're talking. He did pitch against inferior competition this year, but he's a steal for the Sox at No. 13.
I know the MLB.com guys are talking about how Sale might end up as a reliever, but I honestly like Sale's chances to stay in the rotation. They've had a pretty good history developing starters.
Now's the time you have to start looking for the following players to go off the board: Stetson Allie, Josh Sale, and Zack Cox.
Speaking of Cox, let's talk about his slide. He was projected by many as a top five pick as recently as a week or two ago. Now he's outside the top 13. He's losing some serious coin.
Brewers are on the clock and presumably looking for a pitcher...which means they'll probably take a hitter.
8:10 p.m. How funny was it to see the Reds draft room, when the TV in their room switched to TV coverage of themselves. You could tell they got quite a chuckle out of it.
In other news, the Reds took Yasmani Grandal, giving them their catcher of the future. I have to admit, I'm a Ryan Hanigan guy. I mean, he hits like crazy, and he gets little-to-no playing time. The Reds also have Devin Mesoraco in play, and he's playing out of his mind this year, but I guess you can't pass up a bat like Grandal's.
Chris Sale still hanging around...
The White Sox are on the board, and you know they're kicking themselves for missing out on Grandal. Too bad this isn't the NFL draft, and they really couldn't do anything about it.
8:05 p.m. Deck McGuire goes to the Blue Jays with pick 11.
I'm kind of surprised Chris Sale is still on the board at the 12th pick. You know he is.
McGuire is one of the safer college arms in my opinion. I recently tabbed him as "the most likely to win 20 games in a season" in another slideshow of mine, and I like him that much. I especially like him with the Blue Jays, knowing how they have developed some college pitchers over the past few years (see, just about everyone in their rotation).
McGuire throws in the low 90s and features a pretty decent curveball, slurve and changeup.
8:00 p.m. The draft is moving pretty quickly, and the A's just rounded out the top ten by taking Michael Choice, who seems like the perfect fit for the team. Choice is a fantastic hitter and comes from the same program that churned out Hunter Pence.
Choice's power is for real and it was on display this year as he crushed 16 home runs. Making him even more appealing to the A's are his 76 walks in only 60 games.
7:54 p.m. The Padres just picked one of my personal favorites, Karsten Whitson, with the ninth pick. Whitson was the second-best prep pitcher available in this draft after Taillon.
He also has one of the best complimentary pitches in the draft in a slider, a solid out-pitch that helped him strikeout two-thirds of the batters he faced this year.
The Padres don't have much top-tier talent in pitching aside from Simon Castro, so I'm sure they were glad to pick up Whitson.
7:49 p.m. I contemplated giving the Astros Delino Deshields Jr. with the eighth pick in my mock draft, but figured the Astros could get him with their second pick later in the first-round.
Deshields has blinding speed, and interestingly enough, topped both Bryce Harper and 2010 draftee A.J. Cole in a Baseball America survey of top players in the country by age. Granted each of the players was 12 at the time, but that's pretty impressive. I'm not sure there are many people who can say they beat Harper at something.
Also worth noting, Deshields Jr. supposedly has better speed than his papa, who swiped 463 bases in his 13 seasons.
7:45 p.m. The Mets took UNC righty Matt Harvey with the 7th pick, restoring some sanity to this draft. Harvey famously refused to sign out of the 2007 draft, and for a while it looked like he might end up going much lower than the third-round. But he pulled himself together and put together a pretty good 2010 season.
Harvey can be a workhorse for the Mets, with a ceiling as number two or three starter.
7:37 p.m. The D-Backs just selected Barrett Loux, and this draft has just gone loony!! Just for your info, college pitchers still left on the board include Chris Sale, James Paxton, Deck McGuire, and Brandon Workman.
Baseball America rated Loux as a sandwich-round talent. The 6'5'' righty features a mid 90s fastball that rates very highly, but his secondary stuff is less than first-round pick worthy. His curve apparently suffered greatly after he had elbow surgery late last year, so the D-Backs must be confident he can regain that curve.
P.S. The last time two shortstops (Machado and Colon) went in the top ten was 2005, when Justin Upton went first overall, and Tory Tulowitzki went six picks later. Upton later moved off short and into the outfield.
7:35 p.m. Nice to see Pomeranz is rocking the "Bama Bangs." For anyone unfamiliar with bama bangs, check out Travis Clay's book on SEC football "Dixieland Delight." It is a true delight.
7:32 p.m. Drew Pomeranz goes No. 5 to the Indians. Solid, safe pick. Pomeranz should move quickly through the system, a la Alex White.
Glad to see the Indians making some smart moves. With Carlos Santana coming up any week now, the rebuilding project should be on in full in Cleveland.
7:28 p.m. Damn, guess I won't bat 100% with my picks. Shot to hades at No. 4. The Royals throw a curveball and take Cal State-Fullerton shortstop Christian Colon. Everyone who's anyone thinks Colon will stay at short long-term, so the Royals very well may have the best left-side combo of any organization in the minors with Mike Moustakas at third.
7:25 p.m. More on Machado, in case you haven't heard, he may or may not be the next Alex Rodriguez. Something tells me he might just fall short of being the greatest player of our generation (debatable, I know).
My favorite attribute: Machado is familiar with wood bats. The others: he's got five-tool talent, although speed is the weakest of those five.
7:21 p.m. Nice to see some clapping for the O's. Welcome to Baltimore Manny Machado!! Welcome to the one organization that truly knows how to ruin shortstops. I know it's early, but I have a question: do the O's move Mychal Givens from shortstop or let them both work their way through the system and deal with it later.
7:18 p.m. My Orioles on the clock...please don't pull a Matt Hobgood!!
7:16 p.m. Crushed....the Bucko's rip Taillon away from Andy MacPhail's grasp. Seems like the word most associated with Taillon is "explode." Everyone uses it to describe his fastball.
At least the Pirates made a smart move. Haven't necessarily done that in a while. Looking at you Daniel Moskos!!
Watch out for the Rice curse, though, as Taillon is a Rice commit, and we all know how well Rice pitchers tend to turn out.
7:13 p.m. The Pirates are on the clock. I have my fingers, toes, and every other appendage I can muster crossed, hoping they take Machado.
7:10 p.m. Drum-roll please.........and the Nationals select.......more drum-roll.......the Chosen One. Bryce Harper becomes a National less than 26 hours before last year's number one pick Stephen Strasburg makes his ML debut. Quite a week for the Nats. Harper's so young, and has so much experience under his belt, that you have to wonder if the Nats might just shut him down, or send him to extended spring training to refine his catching skills while giving him a breather.
Also intrigued by Bud's intro of Harper...."outfielder Bryce Harper."
7:00 p.m. Teams without first-round picks include the Mariners, Tigers and Braves. It will be interesting to see how these teams plan accordingly in round two.
Here we go!!!....whenever Bud stops talking....STOP TALKING BUD!!
6:53 p.m. Confirming what most people thought prior to today's shenanigans: the White Sox are back in the market for Grandal.
If the past 24 hours have shown us anything, it's that the MLB draft is the most unpredictable of any of the major sports. We know pretty much down to a science how the first-round of the NFL draft will play out weeks in advance, and with only two rounds the NBA draft isn't much of a crap-shoot either.
But baseball's draft....YIKES!!!
6:28 p.m. The most recent word on the street is that the Reds are looking at Chance Ruffin with the 12th pick, the Orioles are ready to take Manny Machado, and the biggest news of the day: the Indians have outbid the Royals for Yasmani Grandal. Even though the Royals still claim there was no deal on the table with the Miami backstop, rumors have the team offering him a $2.9 million bonus, a far cry from the $6.2 he was reportedly demanding.
Only another half our until Bryce Harper's supposed coming-out party. That seems silly to me, how can a guy have a coming out party when he's been on the cover of most baseball publications already?
4:15 p.m. The most recent update from Keith Law claims that the Royals have scrapped their plans for Yasmani Grandal and instead are zeroing in on Florida Gulf Coast lefty Chris Sale. That move might allow Grandal to slide a little bit further down the draft boards than earlier expected.
What a heck of a year for Sale though! Goes undefeated, strikes out a ridiculous amount of batters, and now it looks as if he'll be the fourth pick in the draft. Guy earned himself some serious coin.
2:03 p.m. One of the players I'm most looking forward to seeing start his career is Fort Lauderdale's Nick Castellanos. Nick put together one heck of a season in 2009, hitting .485 with eight home runs and 45 RBI, and finishing it off by putting on a good show at the All-Star showcases.
The kid has big-time power and could develop into a David Wright-type player at the big league level if he reaches his potential. I get the feeling that if there wasn't any Harper this season, a lot of focus would be on Castellanos.
Also, only seven more hours until the draft is over...and the Anthony Rendon to the Orioles with the first pick in the 2011 draft talk begins!!!
1:48 p.m. I didn't officially get time to post my mock draft on BR, so here's what I think the top ten will look like:
1) Nats- Harper
2) Pirates- Taillon
3) Orioles- Machado
4) Royals- Grandal
5) Indians- Chris Sale
6) D-Backs- Drew Pomeranz
7) Mets- Zack Cox
8) Astros- Josh Sale
9) Padres- Michael Choice
10) A's- Justin O'Conner
Thank goodness Harper is going number one. I'll at least pin one tail on the donkey. And I'm kind of sad that it looks like Taillon isn't going to drop to the Orioles. I'm man crushing on him something fierce.
12:30 p.m After months and months of deliberation, Jim Callis from Baseball America, and Keith Law from ESPN actually agree on the No. 2 pick. It looks like Jameson Taillon is going to be a Pittsburgh Pirate. Of course, nothing is official, and they could still wig out and go with Machado. We could very easily get to 7 p.m. with the first four picks decided on: Harper, Taillon, Machado, and Grandal.
11:41 a.m. So not much is going on. Bryce Harper is looking like he's going to command $10 million to sign. The Pirates have shifted about 13 times (probably) in the last hour on Taillon or Machado. And the Red Sox still plan to take the player who is demanding the most money, but is still on the board. Looking at you Anthony Ranaudo!
10:42 a.m. And if you thought Whitson's numbers were sick, check out Jesse Biddle, a projected first-round pick from Germantown, PA. He's got 59.1 innings pitched and 140 strikeouts! That leaves only 38 outs recorded NOT by strikeout. Hard to believe he lost two games. Great story on Biddle.
10:31 a.m. Just FYI, for anyone who hasn't checked out Karsten Whitson, a likely top 15 pick. The young righty struck out 123 batters in only 55 innings. Just in case you didn't have a calculator handy, that means Whitson has recorded 123 of the 165 outs this season by strikeout. That leaves only 42 outs NOT by strikeout. INSANE!! Check out a great article on him here.
10:03 a.m. Word has it that the Royals have settled in on Miami catcher Yasmani Grandal. Word even goes so far as to say that the perennial top 10-picking Royals may been working on a deal to secure Grandal's services. If this were the case, then Grandal could get right to work, possibly with a placement at Low-A Burlington
In other news, Drew Pomeranz and the Ole Miss Rebels were ousted from the CWS, meaning his season is over. And what a season it was. Few college pitchers performed as well as the lefty, and he is about as sure-fire to go top ten as anyone outside of Harper, Taillon, and Machado.
Also, after seeming to prefer prep SS Manny Machado over high school RHP Jameson Taillon, it looks like the Pirates have done an about face, with Taillon now their preferred target. Taillon will probably demand a million or two more than Machado, so this looks like a win-win for the Orioles at No. 3. They're primed to pick up a premier SS and pay less than if Taillon fell to them.
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