Well, another year and another draft in the books. This year’s draft sparked a few of the busiest days in the history of the site, including signing day, and I’m grateful all of you showed up and hit refresh all day while we waited for announcements to be made. I’m going to give a few final thoughts on the Phillies picks, as well as give a few more general comments, and then we’ll wait and see what happens this winter with the rumored changes to the draft process. The Phillies have done well in the draft over the last decade, some years better than others, but even recently they began to be slightly more aggressive, and the result has been a number of excellent prospects, usually at a bargain. This year was no different, so lets get started.
First, I’m not going to go over every single draft pick. All of the links and information can be found on the 2011 draft page. I included the most update to date signing matrix, as well as a link to the deadline day discussion topic for future reading. I will also post the signing matrix here.
(click here if it doesn’t display properly in your browser)
* Signed 30 of their 51 draft picks
* Signed 9 of their first 11 draft picks
* I estimated the signing bonuses for JDT and Knight, as both probably received at least $100K
* The Phillies spent an estimated $4.6M, maybe a bit more, when factoring in the small unreported bonuses to guys like Knight, Rios, and Murray.
* Without a first round pick, the total slot estimates for the Phillies picks was right around $2.8M, if you estimate $100K for post 5th round picks.
* The Phillies bonus outlay was more than 60% above the slot recommendations, boosted largely by the massive bonus for Mitchell Walding, who received $800K in the 5th round
So, how did this draft turn out? I think it turned out pretty well. In recent drafts, the Phillies took their share of pitchers and seemed to shy away from big outlays on middle infielders and pure power prospects. In this draft, they were able to grab the prep player with arguably the best raw power in the class (Larry Greene Jr), and they also added two potential elite shortstops (Greene, Walding) and one potential above average 3B in Harold Martinez. They also plucked two college lefties in Adam Morgan and Austin Wright. They also grabbed three raw arms in Kenny Giles, Braden Shull and Jesen Dygestile-Therrien. Roman Quinn is a bit of a wildcard, as he may be a CF, or he may be another middle infielder. What we do know is that he was possibly the fastest player in the draft.
I’m not doing draft grades. It will be really hard to know what we have in these guys for 2-3 years. We had a bunch of raw guys, we have a few more polished guys. One only has to look at the 2008 draft to understand the need for patience. Zach Collier missed a ton of time through injury, but looks to be back on track. Mike Stutes, who was a blip on the radar when he was drafted, has developed into a solid middle reliever with the big league club this year, even after struggling with his control all last season and appearing to be a ways away. Likewise, it could take years before we really know what we have in these draft picks. The Phillies scouts have done a fantastic job in the draft, especially outside of the first round, over the last 4-5 years. The Phillies have their lists, they have their guys, and they’ve hit on a number of guys that were largely ignored/underhyped by the media outlets. This year’s guy may be Mitchell Walding, who BA didn’t seem to give much attention to, but the Phillies obviously loved, giving him the 2nd biggest bonus for their 2011 picks.
As a whole, I like this crop of guys. I’m interested to see Larry Greene’s power in play, I’m interested to see Quinn’s game changing speed, and I’m most interested in seeing how the H-Mart, Walding, Quinn, and Greene group play out next season. The Phillies spent money this year, relative to the slot recommendations, and they signed a bunch of really interesting bats. I’m excited to see where things go and hear the reports from the Florida Instructional League. Until next year…