The draft is a few days away

I’ve gotten a number of emails asking when I was going to write about the draft. I’ve tried to incorporate draft talk into my weekly notes column, and I’ve shared some thoughts here and here. I also wrote a lengthy piece on ways to fix the draft, which you can find here, and I shared some initial thoughts on this year’s draft in a longer piece which you can find here. So that’s everything I’ve written about the draft so far. But as we’re getting closer, I figured I should maybe add a bit more. So check below…

In one of the linked pieces above, I gave some broad ideas of what the Phillies generally do in the draft. I decided to go into a bit more detail here. I looked at every draft from 2002-2009, as 2002 was Marti Wolever’s first draft, I believe, and he’s been in charge of the whole thing since. I’ve created some basic tables so I don’t have to type out all of the info.

Let’s start with a broad breakdown of the Phillies picks from 2002-2009 in Rounds 1 through 5.

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This chart is fairly self explanatory.

HS = High School
4C = 4 year college player, both juniors and seniors

Of the 8 drafts listed here, the Phillies were missing their 1st round pick on 3 occasions, which is a big handicap. In 2003, they didn’t have 1st or 2nd round pick, but some of these lost picks were offset with an extra pick in 2006 (Adrian Cardenas) two extra picks in 2007 (Travis D’Arnaud and Matt Spencer) and three extra picks in 2008 (Collier, Gose, Pettibone)

Now lets look at how things broke down by state

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The takeaways here are pretty obvious as well. The Phillies (like a lot of teams) draft heavily in California and Texas, the two biggest baseball hotbeds in the country. Unlike some teams, they generally seem to shy away from Florida in the early rounds, and Florida normally has a decent crop of players to choose from. Adrian Cardenas is the only player drafted out of a Florida school in the first 5 rounds under Marti Wolever. Of the 8 first and supplemental first round picks, 3 of them have come from California, 3 from Texas, and then one from Florida (Cardenas) and one from Connecticut (Hewitt) In the first 3 rounds, the Phillies took 9 guys from Cali and 6 from Texas, which accounts for 58% of their picks in the first 3 rounds from 2002-2009. I think that’s pretty significant.

Finally, lets break it down by position

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This chart basically indicates that the Phillies have spread their picks among the three big subsets (pitchers, infielders and outfielders) almost evenly, and they’ve also taken 21 high school and 21 college players in their 42 picks in Rounds 1-5 since 2002. There are a few prevailing themes to take from this chart though

* The Phillies have drafted 5 third basemen in R1-R5 since 2002, and 4 of them have been prepsters
* The Phillies have drafted 4 second basemen in R1-R5 since 2002, and 3 of them have been college players
* The Phillies have drafted 6 LHP in R1-R5 since 2002, and 5 of them have been college players

Almost all of the other trends fall close to the center line.

You’re going to see a lot of mock drafts over the next 2 weeks. And to be honest, most of them will be wrong, especially right now. Bryce Harper is going #1 overall. Manny Machado and Jamison Tallion are probably going to go 2/3 in some order. Drew Pomeranz will be a top 6 pick, Deck McGuire and Chris Sale will top 10 picks. That’s about all that is known for sure. Every year you read “this is a down year” for the draft, and every year the draft turns out the same way. There will be guys who aren’t really on the radar now that end up first rounders come draft day, there will be guys who slide for unknown reasons, and there will be one or two picks that are complete head scratchers. When you have 30 teams, with hundreds of scouts, you are going to get really divergent draft boards. Player X could be ranked 7th on one team’s board, and 37th on another board. Some teams refuse to even put Scott Boras advised players on their board. Some guys take prep pitchers and drop them 50 spots. Some teams drop guys they know won’t sign for slot. Every draft board is different, especially outside of the first few spots. Its not surprising, but different teams place a different emphasis on different traits and tools.

Because of this, I think its really pointless to try and guess names, especially outside of the top 10. At least for me, because I don’t have access to a Rolodex containing the numbers of scouting directors, cross checkers, and general managers. I simply know what teams have done in the past, and I think past actions in the draft go a long way toward predicting what teams will do in the future. Notice I said “a long way”, not all of the way. Every year there will be a surprise. A team that typically avoids HS players pops a high school guy early. A player expected to go in the Top 10 slides into the 20′s. A first round talent plummets because of signability. It happens. Every year.

With that said, I’m going to go over my predictions for what I think the Phillies are likely to do, based on previous history.

Prediction 1: The player taken here will NOT generate a huge above slot bonus. While have the Phillies have begun to spend a bit of money in the draft over the last 2 seasons, they still generally stick to slot in the first round. Hewitt and Savery signed for slot, and I believe Drabek signed for close to slot, maybe slightly over. The Phillies have shown a willingness to go above and beyond, but not until after the first round.

Despite the chatter about Ruben Amaro Jr loving Austin Wilson, the prep outfielder from California, there have been rumblings that Wilson is going to require top 5-10 money to sign. This goes against the Phillies MO. Wilson fits the bill of what the Phillies love; hes a premium athlete, he has plenty of raw power, and its not crazy to envision him turning into a 30/30 guy in the majors, or at least a 30/18 guy. Unlike Hewitt (who was lauded for his athletic ability), the second thing all scouts say about Wilson is that he’s a tireless worker and has outstanding makeup. But like Hewitt, the big question is going to be his ability to make consistent contact. All of that said, I don’t see Wilson making it to the Phillies at #27, as I think the Red Sox are a candidate to take him at #20, and I think even if he gets to Philadelphia, the bonus demands might scare them off. The one point that goes against this is that the Phillies have generally been excellent when it comes to determining signability (with a few misses, but lots of successes), and if they think they can sign him for what they are willing to pay, then I think they’d take him. But I think there’s less than 20% chance that Wilson is there, and 15% that he’s the pick. It could happen, but I’m not buying it yet. Oh, and Wilson is committed to Stanford, and Stanford rarely loses recruits out of high school.

I mentioned Anthony Ranaudo and his injury worries that could slide him toward the end of the first round in a earlier post. But he posted a nice start his last time out, his velo is coming back, and even if he were to be there at 27, the Phillies likely wouldn’t pony up for him, as his advisor Scott Boras isn’t the type to do discounted deals.

So yeah, I think the Phillies are sticking to slot in R1, which is going to limit their player pool somewhat.

Prediction 2: The player comes from either California or Texas. Again, this just goes along with recent history/logic. Texas and California are always the two deepest states, with the most Top 100/Top 200 prospects, and the Phillies obviously trust their guys in both states enough to consistently go back there for picks. So who are the top prospects in each state?

California:

Will be gone by #27

Christian Colon, SS (Cal-State Fullerton)
Dylan Covey, RHP (prep)

Might/Will be there at #27

Austin Wilson, OF (prep)
Christian Yelich, 1B (prep)
Tony Wolters, 2B (prep)
Michael Lorenzen, OF/RHP (prep)
Peter Tago, RHP (prep)
Rob Rasmussen, LHP (UCLA)
Dan Klein, RHP (UCal-LA)
Aaron Sanchez, RHP (prep)
Gary Brown, OF (Cal State Fullerton)
Griffin Murphy, LHP (prep)
Chad Lewis, 3B (prep)
Adam Plutko, RHP (prep)

Texas:

Will be gone by #27

Jamison Tallion, RHP (prep)
Brandon Workman, RHP (Texas)
Michael Choice, OF (UT-Arlington)

Might/Will be there at #27

Barret Loux, RHP (Texas A&M)
Chad Bettis, RHP (Texas Tech)
Chance Ruffin, RHP (Texas)
Tyrell Jenkins, RHP (prep)
Zach Lee, RHP (prep)
Brian Ragira, OF (prep)

There have been some rumors indicating the Phillies are really looking at Jesse Biddle, a tall lefthanded prep pitcher from Germantown Friends Academy near Philly. Biddle was a consensus R2, maybe sandwich round guy until this news came out. As someone pointed out in the comments before, the same rumors started around Jason Knapp heading into the 2008 draft, and the Phillies took him in the 2nd round. The Phillies have drafted 1 prep LHP in R1-R5 since 2002, and that was Cole Hamels all the way back in 2002. Within the above linked Jim Salisbury article, he also name drops

Asher Wojciechowski, RHP (The Citadel)
Taijuan Walker, RHP (prep, California)
Scott Frazier, RHP (prep, California)

PNR Scouting ranks Frazier 81st in the country, Walker 79th, and Woj at 29th. Obviously Woji at 27 is much more believable than Walker or Frazier, who would both fit better in the 2nd round.

I’ve posted links to the scouting reports/videos of the above players, just click their names. Some of these guys are more 2nd/3rd round guys, but again, anything can happen leading up to the draft. I don’t have a strong feeling about any of the names outside of Aaron Sanchez, but I have a feeling he will be gone before #27.

Prediction #3: The Phillies will be take at least one highly rated prep prospect from the state of Washington in the first 12 rounds. The Phillies presence in Washington has grown in recent seasons, as they’ve gone there quite a bit since 2007;

2009, R3 – Kyrell Hudson, OF (prep)
2009, R5 – Matt Way, LHP (college)
2008, R4 – Trevor May, RHP (prep)
2007, R2 – Travis Mattair, 3B (prep)
2007, R12 – Julian Sampson, RHP (prep)

This year, Washington again has a few interesting guy.

Josh Sale, OF (prep) – Will likely be gone in the top 15 picks, but if he somehow got to 27, I think there’s a great chance the Phillies would grab him.

Drew Vettleson, OF/RHP (prep) – He’s actually a switch pitcher, with great arm strength and athleticism (duh), but his future power output is in question. He profiles as an every day RF who will hit for good averages and modest power.

Here are a few more thoughts I have on this draft and general draft philosophy

1. At #27, you should either; a.) Roll the dice with a really raw, huge upside player or b.) take a college closer who will be in the majors in 1 year.

The draft is all about maximizing value, no matter what your big league team looks like. But I think different teams have to address the draft in different ways. For a big market team like the Phillies, Red Sox, or Yankees, drafting guys who project as fringe regulars probably isn’t going to give you much value, unless that player has some sort of untapped potential. This applies really to the first round or two in particular. Even the biggest teams still need good utility guys, but I think its best to use these utility type picks on middle infielders, and there are normally a bunch of those guys available in R3-6. But when you’re picking 27th, the odds are that there won’t be a legitimate #1 starter type on the board for you, or a stud .300/.400/.550 hitter available for you. So you either need to completely roll the dice and hope to hit the lottery, or you should take a very high probability pitcher, someone you know will be able to help your big league team in a very short time. This is actually a change in philosophy for me over the last few years, as I generally shunned all college closers, but I think if you find the right guy (and maybe its a starter with only 2 pitches that you immediately turn into a fast track reliever) it makes sense. If you draft a corner OF who projects to maybe hit .280 with 18-20 HR, that might be a decent enough line for a small market team. But for a team with huge aspirations and high demands, these types of second division starters tend to get lost in the shuffle.

2. Don’t focus on “overdrafts”, which is something you’ll hear a lot of when the draft begins. Because teams can’t trade picks, when it comes to you, it comes down to a simple equation. You know where you pick, you know when your next pick is, and you know how many spots there are between picks. If you think the guy you really want won’t be there at your next pick, and you love that guy more than someone who experts rate higher, you should take your guy. 20 years after a player is drafted, if he goes 10th overall when he was rated the 19th best player, and he has an all star career, all anyone will remember was that he was a first rounder, not that he was rated 19th and taken 10th. Just take the guy you like.

3. Kind of going along with point 1, the Phillies should be looking at polished college guys that are able to help early on, and then load up on the signability, high upside guys in the R5-15 range. The current Phillies system is very top heavy in the short season/Low A level, and very thin at the upper levels. Over the next few seasons, the Phillies will have very few real “needs”, based on who will still be here. In this draft, which is generally considered fairly low on elite talent, I’d be looking to add a hard throwing guy who you think you can fast track to the majors as a reliever, a solid up the middle fielder who can play solid defense and hit enough to be a good utility infielder, a quality college catcher, and then load up on high school arms and up the middle guys, attempting to sign a few of them at the end of the summer.

If I put aside my bold predictions, here is both my dream scenario and realistic scenario for the first three picks

#27

Dream Pick: Brandon Workman, RHP (Texas)

Workman isn’t going to be there at #27, and it remains to be seen if the Phillies are still peeved over him changing his bonus demands right before the signing deadline a few years ago. But he is polished, he’s improved his command, and with the addition of a cutter, he looks like a rock solid #2/3 SP who will only need 1 to 1.5 seasons in the minors before being ready to step into the rotation. That would coincide nicely with Joe Blanton’s impending free agency after 2012. But like I said, I think there’s like a 3% chance he’s still there at 27 unless he gets hurt.

More Realistic Pick: Asher Wojciechowski, RHP (The Citadel)

I view Woj as the ideal guy to turn into a reliever and mold into a shutdown closer. His fastball is 92-95 as a starter, but might tick up to 94-97 in short stints, and his slider is a plus pitch already. He has a simple, repeatable delivery, and has been a model of health in college. He’s a big guy (6’4/235) and with the uptick in velo, he could be lights out. His fastball and slider are big league pitches now (or close to it), and he won’t need much time at all in the minors, as I could see him actually making it to the majors by late 2011 if he’s used in relief.

Should Be There Pick: Jesse Hahn, RHP (Virginia Tech)

Hahn was close to triple digits last summer on the Cape, but he’s had some minor injury concerns, which is the only real red flag. He’s good got size, even better raw arm strength, and a knee buckling breaking ball. He’s a bit of a wildcard, and I suppose he could go in the top 20, but I think he’ll be there at 27.

Likely Pick: Tyrell Jenkins, RHP (Henderson HS, Texas)

Jenkins is a Marti Wolever special. He’s 6’4/180, an ideal projectable frame. He is a three sport star, so the premium athleticism is there. He has big arm strength, already running his fastball up to 95 mph at times. And the icing on the cake, he’s quite raw, and will require a lot of time. He’s from Texas, the Phillies love pitchers from Texas. And hell, he’s already wearing a Phillies jersey! I’d actually like this pick a lot, if I was forgetting everything I just said about trying to target good college value guys early and then popping HS guys later. Jenkins will be gone by #77 for sure, unless he throws out a huge bonus $$ amount.

#77

Dream Pick: Micah Gibbs, C (LSU)

Gibbs is a switch hitting catcher with very good defensive chops and is having a career year offensively. He’s spent his college career catching some pretty awesome pitchers at one of the best baseball schools in the country. Scouts question how much he’ll hit, but if the Phillies have shown us anything in the last few seasons, its that they value defense over everything else at the C position. Gibbs is likely to be gone, probably in the Top 50, but I’ll be salivating if we get to pick 67 or 68 and he’s still on the board.

More Realistic Pick: Jordan Swaggerty, RHP (Arizona State)

Following my plan of college early, high upside prep late, I’ll throw Swaggerty’s name in the mix. He’s not as big and tall as some of the guys listed above, but he creates tons of sink and movement on his fastball, it has plus velo, and he has two average or better secondary pitches. He has a deceptive delivery but a very short arm action, which makes the ball appear to explode out of his hand. Like Woj, Hahn, and Workman, he’s not likely to need much time at all in the minors.

Likely Pick: Jesse Biddle, LHP (Germantown Friends School, PA)

The Phillies are being linked to Biddle in the same fashion they were linked to Jason Knapp. The big question will be whether he lasts till 77 or not. I’m inclined to say he won’t, unless he really tells teams hes determined to go to college and its all part of a ploy to get to the Phillies. Who knows.

#108

Dream Pick: Rick Hague, INF (Rice)

Hague had the look of a first round pick back in January, but he looks a lot more like a wildcard at this point after a somewhat disappointing junior season. Some scouts think he’ll have to move to 3B at the next level, where his bat won’t play nearly as well. He doesn’t have one outstanding tool, but he’s a good hitter with decent pop, and I think he could play SS, just not on an every day, starter role for a championship caliber team. I’d view Hague as a near ideal utility infielder on the current big league club, capable of playing SS for a few games, filling in at 3B, 2B, and maybe even the corner OF spots. Draft him, buy him all the gloves he’ll need, and get him ready.

More Realistic Pick: Griffin Murphy, LHP (prep)

I highlighted Murphy above. The Phillies really lack anything resembling an elite LHP in the minors. Murphy isn’t perfect, he’s not Tyler Matzek, but he has a real strong arm, and if the Phillies can tweak him a tad bit, they might be able to unlock a near the top of the rotation type arm. A lot will depend on price tag here, but this is where you start to look in that direction.

Likely Pick: I have no idea.

There is so much uncertainty surrounding the draft, its almost pointless to try and figure out what is what. Teams are not generally forthcoming about their draft plans, so when you hear that Team A “loves player X”, it does have to be taken with a giant grain of salt. When the dominoes start falling, guys who didn’t seem like they’d be available might be, asking prices will change, and it will be a mad scramble.

The Phillies, picking at 27, really have to either roll the dice on a big upside lottery ticket, or they have to take a high probability guy who can help quickly. I almost can’t believe I’ve kind of taken a 180 on my philosophy, but with prospect attrition being what it is, going college early and then prep late, and spending the money required to land a bunch of those guys, might just be the best solution. Hopefully the success of guys like Jarred Cosart and Domonic Brown have convinced the Phillies that spending the money late is almost always the right move and they will continue to do so this summer.

69 thoughts on “The draft is a few days away

  1. I’ve actually faced biddle the past two years. I haven’t had the opportunity to hit against him but he’s a big kid. Last year he hit a shot that went at least 450 ft.

  2. Helluva job, PP.

    I like Biddle, too…from what I’ve read.

    Answers the question: where’s the lefties hiding?

  3. Further, it is deceiving to say that a team should just pick “the best player out there.”

    When making a choice teams IMO consider what are their ML roster and minor lg prospects’ needs and try to fill them in the draft so long as they don’t thus have to pass on a concedely much better guy.

    Since the Phils system seems loaded with promising OF prospects(several still in spring training), it would be a mistake to pass up a good lefty pitcher in the first two rounds in order to pick another OFer.

  4. I believe you take the best avaliable. why reach for a need. If the best prospect is a outfielder you take him and deal with the overload later, how many outfielder do we have now on the roster , are home grown??? I think workman could be there at 27 because some thing I have read say he has dropped, .

  5. Let’s analyze this dream. An advertised “2 or 3″ pitcher who burned ‘em in the draft 3 years back who might work his way to a Joe Blanton type, a good defense Switch-Hitter Catcher who just might turn out to be a back-up, and a projected utility infielder. Not excited by any of those guys, but if Gibbs falls to the 70 range (which is behind where many say he goes) then he might be good if a Prep Catcher is not obtained in round one.
    Not excited by any of listed players in article save for Austin Wilson, and the pitchers Tyrell Jenkins and Biddle (Josh Sale(who won’t likely be available) Chad Lewis (who many believe won’t be near the 1st 3 rounds) etc. Now some of the other pitchers might work out such as Hahn, Wojo…, and others , and I don’t really look into pitchers that much,but there might be very good or better pitchers available past the first few rounds. I believe the Phillies have a history of taking California and Texas players because, largely, that is where the players are. Large states where they play year round. I believe they would take from any area early. I believe they would go well above slot for early picks if the right players were there and perhaps would then adhere more to slot in later rounds. I believe that past history is not always a predictor of future decisions.

    Some Players I like for Philly early, that I looked into on internet.

    Austin Wilson, OF—one of the (Said) big money requestors that many have predictors will fall out of 1st couple of rounds due to signability issues. So maybe he is there at 27, I believe they would bite the bullet here, and eventually he would sign for around 3 million.

    Kaleb Kowart- 3B-RHP, good pitcher but wants to play 3B, Switch Hitter with power from both sides, Said to want aroung 3 million.

    Other 3B- Nick Castellanos (said to be another big money requestor), Garin Cecchini

    Justin O’Connor- C-SS-RHP, Said to have tools, said to be signable for Slot
    Other Catchers- Kellin Deglan (Canadian, reputed signable), Will Swanner

    SS- Yordy Cabrera

    Tyrell Jenkins, RHP—Yankees said to be looking at with their 1st round pick, 3 sport star, big money signing likely.
    Jesse Biddle, LHP– Local product , with ability,they could work in early.

    All HS products , those are the kind of players would like to see taken early, and they could also call on some scouting expertise to work in a few additional HS pitchers who could be taken to their good advantage.

  6. For this draft I like:
    -infielders (2B, SS, 3B) who show a good approach at the plate, make consistent contact and have (at least) above average power potential.

    -Prep RHP with pitchability > projectability. I’ll take command of multiple average pitches, solid mechanics and great K/BB ratio over pure velocity, great height (“lanky build”) and flashes of brilliance.

    -Catchers who field the position well enough to stay there, but hit well enough to play somewhere else.

    -”finished product” College pitchers, even if they end up in the bullpen or bottom of the rotation.

    -Corner outfielders with huge power potential would be the only outfielders I’d consider in 2010.

    -LHP are always nice, but don’t “overdraft” them.

    Who I like at these picks:
    27-
    Justin O’Conner- Athleticism and bat to help you anywhere up the middle.
    Cam Bedrosian- prep pitcher with three plus, potentially plus plus pitches? Same size and quality bloodlines as Kyle Drabek, but better stuff, control and makeup.
    Kolbrin Vitek- If he lasts this long, which he won’t, he’d be a perfect addition. I’d stick him at 3B.
    Yordy Cabrera- Another electric bat who would fit well at 3B.
    Sammy Solis
    Kellin Deglin
    77-
    Adam Plutko
    Derek Dietrich
    Micah Gibbs
    Jesse Biddle
    Jedd Gyorko
    DeAndre Smelter

    108-
    Stefan Sabol
    Blake Forsynth
    Adam Coyle
    Garrin Cecchinni
    Tony Wolters
    Joe Leonard
    Chance Ruffin

  7. Good breakdown by everyone. I’m starting to think that Wojciechowski won’t be there for the Phillies and that Amaro’s discussions with Wilson are in case he lasts to the mid-rounds and the Phillies take a flyer on him to see if he signs. I think Hahn would be a perfect pick for the Phillies, injury history, decent upside as starter or closer, however he’s from Virginia Tech, not UVa and I don’t think our favorite guest blogger would want those two schools confused.

  8. I like Baxter’s picks. But I want no part of Wilson or Brown. Especially Brown. We have enough lead-off hitters and outfielders in the minors.

  9. I forgot to add that if this Cowart is still on the board, i’d bet the Phils nab him as a 3B.

  10. Somewhat off topic, but it does relate to the draft. Where does everyone see Matt Szczur (Villanova) being drafted this year?

    For those of you who don’t know, he’s arguably the best player in FCS football (formerly 1-AA), and lead Villanova to the FCS championship last year. His ceiling in the NFL would be Wes Welker, his floor probably Tim Dwight.

    This year, he had a great year for Villanova, batter over .400 with a few homeruns. He’ll never be a 25 home run guy, but does have great intangibles which should allow him to be drafted in the 6th – 10th round.

    Wouldn’t be surprised if a lot of guys on this site didn’t know him, but was just curious if anyone else had any opinions.

  11. 1. My impressions of the MLB draft are taken only from video and comments from BA, Keith Law, BP, PhuturePhillies, etc. Basically I know nothing of my own originality. Nothing can compare to seeing these guys in person and getting a feel for their personality and makeup and talking to the people around them. Getting to the majors is so much of a daily grind and is so unglamourous it takes the right kind of guy that put in the 4-6 years it takes to be successful. They have to do this in relative anonymity mostly getting paid minimum wages (unless top picks). And that is even before they make it to the majors which then requires for them to be mature enough to maintain the same level of dedication under the glare of the big lights. Since so much of success is about mental makeup…especially at Pitcher…my thoughts are based on the history of past Phillies drafts and MLB drafts in general. I am blind to the important facts about these players.

    2. I would add that I believe this is a big draft for the Phillies early on. They can’t afford to misfire in Rd 1 again after 2007 (Savery), 2008 (Hewitt), and 2009 (no pick due to the Ibanez signing). The same principle applies to Rounds 2 and 3, but for a different reason. They have traded away, missed on, or failed to sign (Workman) a major portion of the guys they have drafted in the Top 3 rounds between 2003 and 2008.

    3. The reason my ideas are probably bad ones is because I find myself leaning towards players that fit organizational needs…3B, C, SS, LHP. Yet the strength of this draft at the top seems to be RHP and OF…exactly what the Phillies appear to have plenty of. Of course the team should take the best player regardless, but for the purpose of this exercise I will focus on the guys that fit their obvious needs. My hope is that “Needs” and BPA match up close enough at #27 to work in the Phillies favor…

    Having thrown out those caveats…

    Guys who I would target for the Phillies at #27 based on what I have read…

    Austin Wilson, OF, Harvard Westlake High School – Ranked #14 by Keith Law. Do the Phillies need another OF with possible system shortages at C, IF, and LHP? Not really. But anytime you can get a Top 15 talent at #27, it might be worth it. There is some buzz building from the things I have read that Wilson can be bought out of his Stanford commitment for the right price. However the Phillies only draft him if they are willing to pay him what may eventually be significantly overslot. Otherwise this would be a huge risk that would blow up in their face and wouldn’t make much sense. The Phillies can’t afford to have their 1st round pick not sign.

    Kellin Deglan, C, Langley High School – Ranked #32 by Keith Law. Good size with supposedly a good makeup. But comparisons to Travis d’Arnaud have him being projected as high as the early 20’s right now in some mock drafts. I am expecting him to be off the board at #27.

    Kris Bryant, SS/3B, Bonanza HS, Las Vegas, Nev. – Ranked #29 by Keith Law. Good size at 6’4″ and 190+lbs. Is expected to eventually be moved to 3B because of his size. Good enough arm to play anywhere and plus power ability.

    Justin O’Connor, C/SS/RHP, Cowan HS (IN) – Ranked #34 by Keith Law. This guy seems to be moving up draft boards. What I keep reading over and over is how much scouts like his make-up and personality at C. The only negatives with him is offensively scouts don’t know how he will do facing good pitching. The pitchers he faced in Indiana HS ball weren’t very good supposedly.

    Yordy Cabrera, SS, Lakeland (Fla.) High School – Ranked #43 by Keith Law. Good size, arm, and power. Downside is that he is old for a HS kid (20 years old). Upside is that he has faced some of the best pitching any HS kid has faced anywhere (Florida).

    Jesse Biddle – He is not ranked in Keith Law’s Top 100. All the rumors have him being considered by teams at the bottom of Rd 1 including the Phillies and Dodgers. I have no clue if he is worth #27, #77, or #107. But HS LHP with his size really aren’t that common, so he clearly is a player the Phillies should probably be interested in…I’m just not sure where.

    Nick Castellanos, 3B, Archbishop McCarthy HS, Fort Lauderdale, Fla. – Keith Law has him ranked at #13 but the Sporting News has him projected in their recent mock draft to the Phillies at #27.

    Asher Wojciechowski, RHP, The Citadel – I know PP has written previously that he hates spending early picks at reliever, and I know that is a solid argument. But it sounds like he is changing. A guy like this might make sense because financially the Phillies need to find places to save money…hopefully to be able to resign Jason Werth. With the money for Moyer (2010) and Ibanez and Lidge (2011) coming off the books, if these guys can be replaced with drafted talent, that might make a Werth re-sign possible. Wojciechowski could be a start in that direction. The Phillies could be helped immensely if they could shore up their bullpen over the next couple of years with guys from the farm.

    Other guys that fall into the category of “Probably Will Be Gone” but might be good options at #27 are: Kaleb Cowart, 3B; Stetson Allie, 3B/RHP (I would be interested in him as a 3B…not as a pitcher); and Michael Choice, OF, UT Arlington

    * If the Phillies want a C at #27, I get the sense from various mocks taken together that either Kellin Deglan or Justin O’Connor will get drafted before #27 with the other guy dropping to the Phillies. I doubt both of them get taken before #27. That would mean that 4 Catchers overall went in the first 26 picks and I don’t see that happening.

    * I’ll say it again, personally I think the Phillies need to have success in the first 3 rounds this year. I think this is a big draft for the organization.

  12. From BaseballRumorMill.com…

    First Round Mock Draft: Baseball America
    Posted on May 30th, 2010 10:56 PM by Knuckles

    Baseball America gives us their latest guess at how the first round will play out. Let’s take a look.

    1) Washington Nationals: Bryce Harper, College of Southern Nevada, C
    2) Pittsburgh Pirates: Manny Machado, Brito HS, SS
    3) Baltimore Orioles: Jameson Taillon, The Woodlands, RHP
    4) Kansas City Royals: Drew Pomeranz, Ole Miss, LHP
    5) Cleveland Indians: Chris Sale, Florida Gulf Coast, LHP
    6) Arizona Diamondbacks: Deck McGuire, Georgia Tech, RHP
    7) New York Mets: Zack Cox, Arkansas, 3B
    8) Houston Astros: Josh Sale, Bishop Blanchett HS, OF
    9) San Diego Padres: Kolbrin Vitek, Ball State, 2B
    10) Oakland As: Michael Choice, UT-Arlington, OF
    11) Toronto Blue Jays: Austin Wilson, Harvard-Westlake HS, OF
    12) Cincinnati Reds: Christian Colon, Cal State Fullerton, SS
    13) Chicago White Sox: Asher Wojciechowski, The Citadel, RHP
    14) Milwaukee Brewers: Matt Harvey, UNC, RHP
    15) Texas Rangers: Bryce Brentz, Middle Tennessee State, OF
    16) Chicago Cubs: Karsten Whitson, Chipley HS, RHP
    17) Tampa Bay Rays: Yasmani Grandal, Miami, C
    18) Los Angeles Angels: Dylan Covey, Marantha HS, RHP
    19) Houston Astros: Delino DeShields Jr., Norcross HS, OF
    20) Boston Red Sox: Anthony Ranaudo, LSU, RHP
    21) Minnesota Twins: Alex Wimmers, Ohio State, RHP
    22) Texas Rangers: Justin O’Conner, Cowan HS, RHP
    23) Florida Marlins: Brett Eibner, Arkansas, RHP
    24) San Francisco Giants: Nick Castellanos, Archbishop McCarthy HS, 3B
    25) St. Louis Cardinals: Brandon Workman, Texas, RHP
    26) Colorado Rockies: Stetson Allie, St. Edwards HS, RHP
    27) Philadelphia Phillies: Kaleb Cowart, Cook County HS, 3B
    28) Los Angeles Dodgers: AJ Cole, Oviedo HS, RHP
    29) Los Angeles Angels: Seth Blair, San Diego, RHP
    30) Los Angeles Angels: Aaron Sanchez, Barstow HS, RHP
    31) Tampa Bay Rays: Chad Bettis, Texas Tech, RHP
    32) New York Yankees: Tyrell Jenkins, Henderson HS, RHP

    http://www.baseballrumormill.com/2010/05/first-round-mock-draft-baseball-america/

  13. Just a small edit. Biddle goes to Germantown Friends School (which is located in the city), not Germantown Friends Academy (you are probably thinking Germantown Academy located outside the city and more of a sports school). I only care because I’m shocked to see my high school produce a legit prospect.

  14. I’m interested to see where they go with this pick, all of the guys I’ve seen/heard they’ve been linked to I’d be happy with.

  15. Just an FYI…I did not put the smiley face next to the Astros pick at #8. It appears that the 8) got converted to an emoticon.

  16. Keith Law out with his latest Mock draft. Not so great outcome for the Phillies I think in this scenario. Some of the picks leading up to and after #27…

    #14 – Milwaukee Brewers – Nick Castellanos, SS/3B, Archbishop McCarthy (Fla.)
    #15 – Texas Rangers – Kellin Deglan, C, Langley H.S. (B.C.)
    #16 – Chicago Cubs – Justin O’Conner, C, Cowen H.S.
    #18 – Los Angeles Angels (from Seattle) – Peter Tago, RHP, Dana Hills H.S.
    #22 – Texas Rangers – Kaleb Cowart, 3B/RHP, Cook County H.S.
    #25 – St. Louis Cardinals – Stetson Allie, RHP/3B, St. Edwards H.S.
    #26 – Colorado Rockies – Cam Bedrosian, RHP, East Coweta H.S.
    #27 – Philadelphia Phillies – Jesse Biddle, LHP, Germantown Friends Academy
    #31 – Tampa Bay Rays – Brandon Workman, RHP, Texas

    * Guys falling out of Rd 1…
    ……- Austin Wilson, OF
    ……- Tyrell Jenkins, RHP
    ……- Asher Wojciechowski, RHP

    * He does have 4 Catchers going in the top 26 picks

    http://insider.espn.go.com/mlb/draft2010/insider/news/story?id=5235926

  17. Kaleb Cowart, Nick Castellanos, Austin Wilson,Brett Eibner and Stetson Allie would all be great values at #27 IF they sign…unfortunately I think those guys would only drop that far because of their high price tags…I don’t want Ruben to take a 50/50 shot at one of those high upside guys in the late 1st, figuring we’d be awarded a sandwich pick in 2011 if they don’t sign. If we didn’t just trade away the farm, id be okay with that approach, but we need to sign good players in this draft. Btw I don’t love Kris Bryant because his weakness is consistently making solid contact, esp against good pitching. I’ll trade a little bit in power projection for better contact, especially in an infielder…I really like the athletic SS/rhp types as 3rd basemen. The lumbering prep/college 3b who swing heavier bats rarely stay at 3rd…so unless they’re good athletes or known for solid defense, id prefer to convert an infielder to the hot corner. We’re always looking for the next Mike Schmidt, but he was literally one of a kind; the best ever. The next Polanco or Uggla would be fine. There simply aren’t a lot of sluggers with the agility to play the infield. Id look for Utley type IF prospects- smart, solid athletes with great swings, ideal approaches at the plate and great contact numbers. If they consistently make solid contact, hopefully the power will come.

  18. I have no idea who the Phillies might draft but I do think they’ll make good use of that 6M they received from the Blue Jays in the Halladay trade. It may be allocated over the whole draft class or provide them with the means to pay someone like Castellanos if he falls to them for signability reasons.

  19. I don’t know – I really don’t like the guys the Phillies have been associated with at 27 very much at all. I’d love, love Grandal at 27 but that’s not going to happen. I’d be OK with Workman or Wojo but I’m not sure they are going to get there either. I really don’t want Wilson (kiss of death) as it just seems completely redundant and risky. After that, based on the consensus ratings Yelich, Frazier, Walker and Biddle all seem like reaches at 27. I just can’t get excited about the two time NL champion team with the 150M payroll trolling in the 80-120 prospect rating range for their pick at 27 because they need someone who will sign for slot.

    I’m starting to doubt the Phillies draft strategy. Hamels was the last 1st rounder to make the ML team and he was drafted 8 years ago. After that we had no pick, Golson, no pick, Drabek, Savery, Hewitt and no pick. Drabek will be a major leaguer but I don’t think the others will. Of course , on his draft day, Drabek was viewed as a Top 10 talent, not 110. Maybe the Phillies are right and the consensus is wrong but I doubt it.

  20. I don’t think the Phillies changed their amateur budget allocation one iota because they got 6M from the Blue Jays. The 6m was the difference between Lee’s 2010 salary and Halladay’s 2010 salary.

  21. Squire: It’s also true that the Phillies increased their offer (D’Arnaud was a reluctant inclusion) when they negotiated for that 6M so certainly some of that money can be used to replenish the farm system.
    It’s really picking a nit to suggest either perception is more true since it’s all in-house money, but with the draft being as much about money as talent I think there will be some positive residual benefit from that 6M in this year’s draft.

  22. Man I hope so. I don’t get the sense that Amaro values the draft very much. Nobody would be happier to see the Phillies drop big money on the draft this year than me.

  23. Personally, I don’t think the $6M from Toronto means anything relative to the draft. Maybe at some level that savings at the Major League level will trickle down, but so hard to say.

    Squire echoed my own thoughts. The Phillies either haven’t done well in Rd 1, or haven’t had a 1st round pick at all in Rd 1 since Hamels in 2002. I think it is important for the team to start having some success in the early rounds again. They can’t live on their 1996 to 2002 draft results in early rounds forever.

  24. If the Phils are feeling generous, prep SS Jacoby Jones could be a nice pickup in the 3rd or 4th round. He has great tools and high upside, but supposedly carries a high price tag…I like their recent approach of taking a relatively safe sign in the 1st, then busting slot on multiple picks after that. Hopefully getting drafted by the Phils carries a little more weight due to their recent success, but I also hope that doesn’t mean their picks will be looking to cash in on all those sell-outs. How about Robbie Aviles, the NY kid with the ridiculous numbers? He didn’t face top competition, but seems like a decent choice in the 2nd round. Is it just me, or do these high school pitchers seem a lot more polished than they used to? Sure you still have the raw arms, but there appear to be a good number of prep arms with sound mechanics, 92-94 mph fastballs, relatively advanced secondary offerings and decent control? Guys like that used to be locks in the first 50 picks, but now there seem to be enough that some should be available in rounds 3-6. I guess prep RHP are one of the strong points of this draft. Its nice to be able to take an 18 year old kid and not have to completely rework his delivery, hope he gains velocity when he fills out, teach him secondary pitches and then pray he throws strikes on a consistent basis.

  25. I’m pretty sure Drabek would fall under doing well with their first round pick.

    I think people forget how hard it is to consistently hit on 1st round picks in the MLB draft.

    Since 2000 the Phils have Chase Utley, Gavin Floyd, Cole Hamels, & Kyle Drabek as successes. 4 of 7 picks.

    Just look around the league, and what they’ve done with their 1st round picks the past decade.

    Here are the only teams I can find who really can compare. Brewers (Braun, Fielder, Weeks, Laporta, & maybe Lawrie), Braves (Wainwright, Francouer – who sucks, Joey Devine, & Heyward), Rockies (Jeff Francis, Ian Stewart, Tulowitzki, Friedreich), Rays (Baldelli, BJ Upton, Niemann, Longoria, Price), Rangers (Teixiera, Danks, Smoak).

    I think you’ll notice a trend, most of those teams are picking towards the top of the draft and still miss on half their picks. It’s just the way the mlb draft goes, there’s just too many intervals that need to go right for a guy to develop into a good major leaguer. Hell look at some of our picks recently which have been universally regarded as good ones (Savery & Mattair) who have turned into busts just as big as guys like Hewitt & Golson.

    Unless you’re picking 10-12 you generally are going to have poor odds when it comes to first round picks. Unfortunately that’s just the nature of the beast. As long as the Phils are willing to take/sign a bunch of high upside guys in the first 10 rounds I’m ok with taking a gamble with the last 1st round pick.

  26. I don’t understand what you mean by a gamble. It looks to me that the Phillies are looking for someone they know they can sign at 27, not someone who is the 27th (or better) rated talent.

  27. Gamble to me = Hewitt, Golson,, etc. the guys who are described as the ultimate boom or bust picks.

  28. Hey I never liked Mattair or Savery…the acclaim surrounding those picks certainly wasn’t universal. I think everyone likes upside, and realizes there’s no such thing as a safe pick…but also, consensus scouting opinions are frequently wrong….remember how Utley lacked range to play 2nd and the power to play third? We hate when scouts talk about intangibles, because they’re by definition impossible for guys like us to see, but those intangibles probably determine success vs failure more than any immediately apparent attribute. If there were a metric to accurately predict future success, it would be utilized by every club. We’re talking about human beings with the capacity to make adjustments and no stat can predict how hard your pick will work to improve…that being said, I like advanced high school RHPs and middle infielders who consistently make solid contact in this draft.

  29. 1) I think pp’s comment about drafting college guys early makes sense for the Phils this year. You can usually get them close to slot and it will potentially bring in some guys who are already above A-. Then they should do their usual thing of a few HS guys in the 200-500k range.

    2) If you pick the guy you like the most in round A, but you could still have picked him in round B, you have made a bad pick. It doesn’t matter if he turns out to be an all-star, you did not maximize the value of pick A. For example, Dugan could have been had in later rounds. Why pick him in the second? Pick someone that you like who is likely to be gone before your next pick, then pick your number one guy in the round following.

    2) They have a high number of picks from CA and TX because that is where the players are. I would bet the Phils’s difference in percent of players taken from those two states from other teams is not statistically significant. I think people correctly identified the real outliers as FL (very few picks relative to talent pool) and lots of WA (very high number of picks relative to talent pool).

  30. MLB Mock Drafts are probably a new level of absurdity. Don’t get me wrong, I really appreciate this post, historical analysis and aggregation of videos, but the idea of establishing “value” for prospects given the number of eligible players, lack of a combine-type event getting guys in the same place and the lack of first hand exposure/granular data for draftniks makes all this forecasting pretty pointless (if not entertaining)

    Just get me 1-2 HS pitchers with big arm strength in the mid/later rounds, some upside guys early, and one interesting middle infielder and I’ll be happy

  31. I realize the MLB draft is a total crapshot…even with all the effort and money an organization may invest in it. But even with that being the case it seems to me that the Phillies have very, very little to show from the last 6-7 years in the first 3 rounds.

    Some of the reasons for this are valid due to trades. Some of it is because of losing picks due to FA signings. Some of it is due to missing on guys.

    But regardless of what the reasons are…the conclusion is the same. The 2010 MLB draft won’t make or break the Phillies…but in order for them to have sustained excellence beyond the next couple of seasons, this is the draft where those early picks can go a long way in rebuilding for the future. They need to be better than average this year…and next.

  32. I like Cecchini quite a bit too but there really hasn’t been any indication that the Phillies are connected with him. I’m really hoping that the Blue Jays take Wilson before our pick. So a mock draft that had us taking Matt Harvey. I’d be good with that. When we pick late Wolever always phrases it that all the good college pitchers are likely to be gone by the time we pick so we will likely look a HS players. If Workman or Harvey get pushed down, I could see them taking them. They took Savery in 2007 after Dominguez, Heyward, Mesoraco and Ahrens all were gone before we picked.

  33. Just a note about Garin Cecchini, did you guys realize he tore his ACL in March? I am sure that will drop him a number of rounds in the draft. That makes him a very tricky sign.

    First of all his health obviously. It was his speed that made him kind of extra special. But even assuming he gets back to 100% he verbally committed to LSU. If you draft him in the 4th, 5th, 6th round etc, you are still going to have to buy him out of his scholarship plus wait on the rehab.

    http://www.baseballamerica.com/blog/draft/?p=2031

  34. @BostonPhan —
    I disagree with your point #2. If you get a guy in Round A, and that player turns into an all star then that was a succesful pick, end of story. (I could be reading to much into your example.) Getting an allstar at any point regardless of ‘reaching’ for the pick means you got value for that pick.
    Saying that you could have gotten more value by picking the same player later is fine but can never by proven…in that you can’t guarantee the player would still be there. If one team likes the player enough to take that player in Round A there could be another team that equally likes that player as well that picks before the next round, etc…

  35. Reggie Golden sounds like the guy the Phils will go after. Ugh.

    Reggie Golden:

    5-28 from: – http://bleacherreport.com/tb/b4kdh – Wetumpka HS (Ala.): The proverbial raw, five-tool high school athlete, the emphasis with Golden should be on the word raw. He has the ability to do just about everything on the field, but simply needs to play and gain experience. He could be a find for a team willing to be patient and there was some buzz that there might be some teams as high as the end of the first round that might be.

  36. -Garin Cechinni’s knee injury doesn’t scare me as much as his LSU commitment, and the fact that he’ll be draft eligible again in only two years. Besides that, we can be afford to be patient with an 18 year old infielder. He was the leading hitter on the 17 and under USA national team, so he must have more going for him than speed. Seems like more of a 3rd baseman though. Since he seems talented enough that he can improve his draft stock with two seasons at LSU, you have to think it will take a lot of money to sign him. I like him too, especially in the 2nd round, but I think we need to try to sign everyone in the early rounds, even if that requires a more conservative approach.

    -I don’t like Christian Yelich in the 1st round. He can’t throw, so he’s limited to 1st base and lacks the power you’d prefer at that position, especially in CBP. However, if he slides to 77, I’d happily take him(if he’s deemed signable) because Singleton is our only 1st baseman of note. (I’ve been urging the Phils to move Savery there since they drafted him) Actually, eh, change “happily take” to “begin to consider”, because I’m sure guys I’d rather have (pitchers and middle infielders) should be available at 77.

    -I don’t mind smaller(sub 6 foot) middle-infielders, because taller ones frequently outgrow the position once they mature physically. Since lack of height doesn’t impede big league success at 2B, SS, or even 3B, height seems like an arbitrary number at those positions. Productive infielders who are downgraded for their lack of height could represent excellent values. In this draft, Sean Coyle, Jedd Gyorko and Tony Wolters immediately come to mind. If we didn’t already have en expensive collection of toolsy outfielders, this might represent less of an issue, because amateur infielders could be shifted to the outfield after losing some quickness in their feet.

    -Likewise, but to a lesser extent, shorter pitchers could also represent hidden values. However, with pitchers, there is more to consider. Since they have less “projectable” frames, fastball velocity must already be present, durability should be examined, and they should show stamina if you expect them to remain starters. Examples here are Cam Bedrosian, Tyler Thornburg, Hayden Simpson, Chris Marlowe, Cody Buckel, Tyler Burgoon, Cole Green, Rob Rasmussen. Again, I’m not saying we should LOOK for shorter players, but we’ve been drafting giants with varying degrees of success. Sitting near the end of every round, we’ll need to find some bargains if we’re looking for upside, and height doesn’t necessarily limit upside.

    -I wouldn’t mind if we didn’t take an OF or 1B in the first 10 rounds.

    -I’m not as enamoured with college pitchers as many others seem to be. I simply think a lot of college coaches abuse their pitchers trying to reach the NCAA tournament, then hide their injuries come draft time. In the minor leagues, a pitcher’s future major league career is the primary(only?) concern. If my kid were a top prep pitching prospect, I might encourage him to sign out of high school. I know the track record is better for college pitchers, but thats simply because ages 18-22 are formative years in terms of physical and mental maturity. The kids who perform well in college are the same who perform well in the minors.

    -Despite our(everybodys) need for catchers, I wouldn’t necessarily take one early. I don’t love this year’s catching crop. By pick 27, the intriguing names (Grandal, O’Conner, Deglan) will most likely be gone, so we’d be looking at the 2nd tier; guys like Gibbs, Kvasnicka, Lavisky and Swanner. I’d consider one of those guys later on, but I’d just as soon stockpile pitching and take a shot later on a sleeper college catcher like Brantly or Forsythe.

    -I know I said it before, but I love the deep pool of prep pitchers this year. I’d be fine if we spent half or more our early picks on high school pitching. That is clearly the strength of this draft, so why not exploit it? If you took a BPA approach this year, you’d probably end up with a high school right-handed pitcher most rounds, especially 2-6. There is no truer baseball axiom than “you can never have enough pitching”. You can trade players but not picks, so why not add the most possible value in the draft?

  37. Bobo, I agree with you on these points: 1) in hindsight, any time you pick an all-star type player, you made a good evaluation and selection; and 2) information is not perfect in a draft.

    I still hold to my main point, however, since each pick has a value, with higher picks having more value than lower picks. If you draft someone in Round 2 that you could have had in Round 4, your opportunity cost is those 60 players you could have had. Hence you did not maximize the value of that Round 2 pick.

    There was an example of this in my fantasy league this year, where a guy picked Nelson Cruz in Round 2. While Cruz was healthy this year, it looked like a great pick. But he could have picked him in Round 3 or even Round 4. In the meantime he missed out on guys like Carl Crawford, Johan Santana, Brian McCann, A-Rod, Morneau, Sabathia. What he should have done is taken one of those guys and then still picked Cruz in Round 3 or 4. It was a good outcome but bad strategy. I definitely take your point in that someone else could have popped Cruz early too, there’s no way to know. However, you can weight these decisions by the likelihood of someone else picking the player you want.

    Switching back to the example of the Phils’ drafting of Dugan, their scout from that area most likely knew which other teams were on Dugan from attending his games and talking to him. From that info, the Phils could gauge other teams’ level of interest. Perhaps that happened in Dugan’s case and they determined there was another team or two ready to pick Dugan in the top part of the third round, but I recall (hazily) that consensus was he was a 4th-5th round type guy. Hence the Phils did not maximize the value of that 2nd round pick.

  38. A very professional well thought out job …kudos to the writer !!! I couldn’t agree more with the concept of drafting a “near ready” bullpen arm for the next year or two.

  39. The one area the Phillies appear to be strongest with ML ready players is with relievers so drafting a college pitcher to fast track for the bullpen doesn’t make much sense.

    I’m still on board with the concept that in the first couple of rounds you draft top talent, even if it comes with risk.

  40. Jonathan Mayo did his first full first round mock and had the Phillies taking RHP Taijuan Walker from Yucaipa HS. In the BA draft chat today, John Manuel indicated that LHP Jesse Biddle has alot of late helium and has touched 94 this spring. I’ve seen Christian Yelich as a possibility to the Yankees at 32 in a couple of places.

  41. David Rawnsley (at pgcrosschecker), who I think is pretty good about this now says he hears Biddle as high as the middle of the first round. Then he has a mock draft where he doesn’t get picked in the first. With regard to the Phillies he says this:

    “27. PHILADELPHIA PHILLIES
    Bryce Brentz, of, Middle Tennessee State
    I have a firm hunch that this will be a surprise “off-the-board” pick, and it would be very easy to pop someone such as Yelich or Biddle (a local product) in this slot. Brentz offers too much power for an organization that craves power to let him fall any further.”

    I think its going to be Biddle or Yelich.

  42. Law just said that HS pitchers are sliding while College Pitchers are climbing. Could be an opportunity for the Phillies who have not been shy about taking HS pitchers in the first round (Myers, Floyd, Hamels, Drabek)

  43. BA just posted a Mock draft and had the Phillies taking A.J. Cole who is a High Upside Pitcher.

  44. One one hand I can’t help but feel that Jesse Biddle would be a significant overdraft at #27, but on the other hand if he truly is hitting 94mph or 95mph at 6’5″ and 230lbs as an 18 year old LHP, that is a pretty interesting combo.

    Throw in the fact that he is a self professed huge Phillies fan and signability is probably not a question either.

  45. In an ideal world you hope you can get Biddle in the 2nd round, but it doesn’t seem likely. If they love him, I don’t think he’s a bad pick – especially with our lack of young high upside lefties. Ideally you get one of the high upside right handers, but Biddle wouldn’t be the worst.

    Now this scares me:

    “Keith:I’ve read reports that H.S. OF Reggie Golden has shot up draft boards where he might be able to sneak into the first round. Any chance the Yankees take him with their first pick?”

    “I’ve written that. That’s a seriously raw HS athlete, more raw than what the Yanks typically go after.”

    That just screams Phils taking him if he’s in the 1st round….

  46. I’m coming off the position that Biddle would be a significant overdraft at 27. I know PGCross is updating their top prospect list one more time before the draft so I suspect we’ll see some movement. The lists are based on pretty limited information and the latest information is always the most relevant (at least that’s how I’m rationalizing it). Slot for 27 should be around 1.25m right?

  47. B, agreed, Biddle at #77 would seem perfect. But there just seems like too much buzz around his name for that to be realistic anymore.

    About Reggie Golden, I am not sure the Phillies would draft “another” toolsy OF after already being loaded with them. You can never say never, but I view it as unlikely.

    I could see an OF like maybe Austin Wilson, maybe Bryce Brentz, maybe Brett Eibner…but Golden? To draft another totally raw OF prospect when more polished ones are on the board would seem completely redundant…even for the Phillies.

  48. Also, I should point out that the latest BA mock is “what we think they should do” not “what we think they are going to do” focused.

  49. I’m with Nobody on Golden. The Phils go for whom they want, but I think they will look to address more needs than they may have in the past. That being said, they’re still going to draft a few toolsy HS OFs.

    I like the idea of Brentz, but that doesn’t feel like a Phils-type pick to me. Guys who perform really well in college aren’t usually what the Phils look for in Round 1. But I would be happy with such a choice.

    I’d also be fine with Biddle in Round 1 – if he was able to increase his velocity from junior to senior year, there may still be more to come. And he definitely sounds like a Phils-type pick – high-schooler with a big frame who will sign for slot. My guess on pgcrosschecker hearing mid-first round for Biddle is that the Angels have been scouting him and they have a pick at 18 I think. I doubt they take him that high.

  50. Angels have 5 picks in the top 40, so signability will be a key for them. So if they’re snooping around Biddle and like him, odds are they’ll grab him with one of those picks.

    But I will say 2 years ago, Knapp was being talked about having similar helium and he hung around til pick 72.

  51. Totally agree with you, B, just don’t think it’ll happen at 18, which will give the Phils a chance. However, the Angels could definitely pop him at 29 or 30.

  52. Personally I don’t think I would be a fan of the Yelich pick. He seems like a 1B only kind of player.

  53. Here is Law’s comments for #27…

    Philadelphia Phillies – Christian Yelich, 1B/OF, Westlake High School (Calif.)Also hearing them on Jesse Biddle and Minnesota catcher Mike Kvasnicka, who seems to be a backup plan for teams as high as the Royals and the Mets.

  54. I say always take the best player available. It doesn’t matter if their position is blocked or whatever. If they have the most ability and potential then pull the trigger. They don’t go measuring a system by how evenly distributed your talent is. They judge it on the amount of talent…period. If you have 5 highly rated outfielders then you have 5 highly rated outfielders. They don’t deduct points from the team or the players themselves because they play the same positions.

    If the best player on the board, who has the best chance to actually HIT, is a first baseman then the club should take him. That’s how I see it anyway.

    I really don’t want anymore toolsheds who have little to no hitting ability though. Look at Singleton. He was a prospect that had a quick bat and a good idea of what to do at the plate. And how bout that…he’s actually hitting! Hey they are lottery tickets, but considering that these players actually need to hit the ball it’s annoying at times to here, “great physical attributes, tremendous athlete, but has little pure baseball skills”…meaning “strong, fast, but can’t hit!”.

    Let’s start getting baseball player more consistently. I know that the club tries to get a bit here and there from each “pot”, but I’d rather the safer potential. That’s just me though.

  55. Yelich- everything I have seen on him, I don’t know why he would be a 1st rounder. I figure him to be bats L throws R 1B who lacks a strong throwing arm, so is likely to only play 1B and don’t see that anyone has claimed he has great power potential either. As far as Philly goes, even if develops fully into a good average hitter and learns a little LF even, he would likely ,to project things out a bit ,be a competitor with Singleton for those positions at that age group. I would think there would be numerous better choices at 27, and if they wanted a 1B for the rookie league, there would be similar players at that position at around the 16th round or so.

    And these mock drafts, most I see for Philly picks, it is just anyone is called a pick for them if they have great raw athletic ability , and if you read the comments of the writer they as much as come out and say so. As far as Keith Law’s pick goes, I believe he assigns Philly a somewhat feasible , but unappealing pick in order to punish them for not following his didactic theories on the supremacy of bizzarro stats and nothing else at all. This should rekindle the “Keith Law hates the Phillies” idea.

  56. I just hope the Phillies select the player with the most potential. I would love to see the Phillies get a catcher in the 1st round, but I do not believe Kvasnicka or Gibbs are 1st round talents. I believe the Phillies will take a HS Pitcher. I have a feeling the pick will be Tyrell Jenkins.

  57. I’m pretty sure today is the pre-draft workout at CBP. Hopefully we get some tidbits from csnphilly.com or philly.com

  58. Wish list

    1st Round:

    01. Cowart
    02. T Jenkins
    03. C Bedrosian
    04. P Tago
    05. T Cabrera

    2nd round:

    01. J Biddle
    02. Kavasnicka
    03. K Deglin

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