June and the 2009 MLB Draft is coming fast. Last year the debate on this site about who KC should pick was basically between Eric Hosmer or Justin Smoak. While the Hos has gotten off to a typical slow midwest league start Smoak is doing just what you would expect someone with his name to be, Smokin'.
The debate won't be as great in the 12 hole this year so let's take a look at how the 1st rounders from '08 are currently doing. This look means absolutely zilch for longterm future of these players but will at least give the Hosmer Bust camp a little info on how all the picks are doing. I also gave a KCScoliny ETA prediction/guess on each pick.
Wow who knew the girl from Sopranos could look like this. What round would you draft her in?
1st Pick Tampa Bay Rays - Tim Beckham - Tim finds himseld in a highly offensively weighted SALLY (South Atlantic League) league. Mike Stanton hit 39 HR's in this league last season just for reference. Parks are smaller and very friendly to hitters. 24 G .301/.323/.441 3-2b 2-3b 2-HR Beckham struggled in the APPY league last year posting a .642 OPS but is off to a decent start in A ball. Tim from everything I read is very raw and gonna take his time level by level to reach the majors. His athleticism is off the charts and Tampa Bay really has no room for him anyway so hard to argue with the pick even if the results are questionable up to this point. KCScoliny Guess at a ETA 2012
2nd Pick Pittsburgh Pirates - Pedro Alvarez - Pedros contract dispute and spring weight and knee problems precede him quite well. Pedro like Moustakas and many of the Royals top prospects has started in the pitching friendly Carolina League. 26 G .207/.321/.391 2-2b 5-Hr 17Bb 28 So. It's very early in the season especially for a player that has played inconsistently over the last couple years due to injury. He is absolutely crushing righties(.919OPS) and struggling versus lefties(3bb 20so), his BABIP isn't doing him any favors either .245. Look for a second half surge from Alvarez. KCS ETA Sept 2010
3rd Pick KC Royals Eric Hosmer joins Dan Gutierrez on the Scott Boras Scottsdale Indy leaguers. Wins the 2010 Indy League MVP and Triple crown leading Scottsdale to the championship. Realizes his pro dreams by moving to Japan and just like Tuffy Rhodes mashes 500+ Japanese league Home Runs while leading the Ham Fighters to their first title since Trey Hillman was manager. The Ham Fighters rename Hillman;s restaurant the Hoz House and only serve Fried Chicken and Waffles. The Bust returns to the states to try to regain glory in the MLB only to find himself tragically injured in a Moustakas locker slamming incident.
4th Pick Baltimore Orioles - Brian Matusz -The Orioles took this lefty out of San Diego with the 4th pick to add to their talented group of pitchers and sent him to the Carolina League after a nice stint in the AFL. 5 GS 2-1 3.67 ERA 3.79 FIP 27 IP 28 H 32/11 So/Bb 3 HR .262 BAA. Pretty impressive 10.54 K/9. If he performs well he might be on the fast track to Baltimore as they could push their young pitchers to go along with their already talented lineup. ETA 2011
5th Pick San Fransisco Giants - Buster Posey - Maybe one of the better athletes in the draft some thought Posey was gonna demand 8-9 million as a signing bonus. Those thoughts were incorrect as the former FSU SS/C signed in the 6M range. Posey has been sent to the very hitter friendly California League. .314/.395/.533 13/15 Bb/So 8 2b 5 Hr Buster is exhibiting more power than many scouts anticipated and he is crushing lefties to the tune of a 1.352 OPS. ETA 2011
6th Pick Florida Marlins - Kyle Skipworth - SALLY league Skipworth was supposed to be a pretty polished hitter when drafted out of high school. .183/.234/.296 3-2b 1-3b 1-HR 5/26 Bb/So Kyle had a very slow start to his pro career last season as he struggled in GCL to the tune of a .602 OPS. His undisciplined ways have carried over this season as well. So far during the early stage in his career he has 18/72 Bb/So ratio. Maybe handling pro pitchers is hurting his bat. ETA Never
7th Pick Cincinnati Reds - Yonder Alonso - Florida State League is a pitcher friendly High A League. Yonder is a very polished college bat who some thought would be first player taken to reach the major league level if he could find a solid position for Joey Votto to play. .272/.330/.495 8 2b 5 Hr 10/17 Bb/So I bet Yonder is sorry he didn't take up Alex on that offer to stay at his condo in NY if he didn't sign. He could've hung out with Madonna and Alex's cousin. What a great time that would've been, oh well I guess minor league cougars will have to do. KCS ETA Sept 2010
8th Pick Chicago White Sox - Gordon Beckham - AA Southern League Georgia SS was probably the best college player in the country the last couple months of the season and hasn't cooled off since. .303/.381/.505 14 2b 2 HR Gordon was crushing the ball in spring and nearly won a big league job. He has continued the hot hitting for Michael Jordan's former team. He is currently playing SS and while Alexai Ramirez has oodles of talent he also has loads of plate discipline issues. I expect Gordon to play 2b in the majors but if Ramirez's struggles continue don't be shocked if Gordon forces managements hand to give him a shot at SS. KCS ETA July 2009
9th Pick Washington Nationals - Aaron Crow- Unsigned
10th Pick Houston Astros - Jason Castro - A+ California League Castro was a surprise pick and many believed it to be a signability draft by the weak Astros farm system. Castro is a so called polished catcher out of Stanford who should move quickly as he has no real roadblocks in the system. .276/.322/.438 6 2b 1 3b 1 HR 7/23 Bb/So An overdraft at the time is not putting up numbers to validate the pick so far. ETA 2010
11th Pick Texas Rangers - Justin Smoak - AA Texas League hitters league The best farm system in the majors were handed a nice shiny package by the Astros not drafting Smoak a pick earlier. As Billy Beane sat drooling the Rangers did the right thing taking the pitch smashing switch hitting college hitter. .358/.470/.547 6 2b 4 Hr 20/13 Bb/So As you can see Smoak has been a large disappointment so far in his minor league career. He smoked pitches all spring and is slugging away at a nice clip in the Texas league so far. Smoak could move fast allowing the Rangers to ship Chris Davis for some pitching depth if they want. KCS ETA Sept '09
12th Pick Oakland A's - Jemille Weeks - Not assigned yet this season. I personally didn't like this pick as I'm not a big fan of college second baseman in the first round. IMO if Weeks is good enough to play middle infield in the pros than he should be playing SS in college or have a bat that can carry his average defense. I don't think Weeks has either. .297/422/.405 3-2b 1-3b 1 HR 13/12 Bb/So Single A Kane County last season Billy Beane has taken to accumulating second baseman after trading for Eric Patterson, Corey Wimberly and Adrian Cardenas(playing SS) in seperate deals the last two seasons and drafting Weeks. KCS ETA Never
13th Pick St Louis Cardinals - Brett Wallace - AA Springfield Texas League There was a slight opening prior to the season for Wallace to get a major league job as Glaus went down with an injury. Wallace didn't seize the opportunity and has taken his smooth bat to AA. .283/.414/.465 3 2b 5 Hr 15/28 Bb/So There aren't many questions about his bat but there is gigantic question about his glove at 3b. With Glaus signed thru '09 Wallace has an opportunity to capture the '10 job. KCS ETA Sept. 2009
14th Pick Minnesota Twins - Aaron Hicks - Not Assinged yet this season. Hicks is a supreme athlete that could've been a high pick as a pitcher. ' 08 Stats 45 G GCL .318/.409/.491 10-2b 4-3b 4-HR Labeled as raw Hicks athleticism talent is hard to question. ETA 2012
15th Pick Los Angeles Dodgers - Ethan Martin - Midwest League Pitchers League 5 G 4 GS 3-0 21 IP 13 H 3 ER 28/7 So/Bb Martin pitched in relief last game for some reason but has done well so far in the pitcher friend MWL. ETA 2012
16th Pick Milwaukee Brewers - Brett Lawrie - Midwest League The Canadian hitting specialist was the 4th catcher taken in the '08 draft and some thought was the most talented hitter among the group. Lawrie has since moved to second base I assume to avoid the clutter of talented catchers in the Brewers system. .330/.381/.596 5-2b 4-3b 4-Hr 8/14 Bb/So Lawrie has international experience as he has traveled with the Canadian team since he was 16 yo. With that background it is not shocking that he has got off to such a fast start considering his hitting background and play versus advanced competition prior to this season. KCS ETA Sept 2011
17th Pick Toronto Blue Jays - David Cooper - AA Eastern League Pitcher Friendly League Cooper was flying thru the system last season bouncing thru 3 levels and finding himself in the Eastern League this season. .267/339/.376 8-2b 1-Hr 12/22 Bb/So The Blue Jays have been pretty aggressive with Cooper playing him in 3 levels last season and bouncing him into AA to start the year. His bat is his specialty and he has been judged as a 1b/DH only. If he is to play those spots then his HR numbers are going to need to increase. KCS ETA 2011
18th Pick New York Mets - Ike Davis - A+ Florida State League Some questioned Davis lack of college pop. A big kid at 6'5 people expected him to fillout and develop power longterm. .288/.378/.423 9-2B 1-3B 1-Hr 15/27 Bb/So If Davis is to be a 1b he is gonna need to develop more power. After struggling in the NY Penn league last season Davis is off to a very average start this season. The ASU alum is gonna need to improve his power numbers for a shot in the pros. Especially playing in the NY Fishbowl. KCS ETA Never
19th Pick Chicago Cubs - Andrew Cashner - A+ FSL TCU always has quite a few talented arms and as most college teams do they typically beat the crap out of them. Maybe knowing the history the Cubs are taking it very easy with Cashner. 3 GS 0-0 9 IP 4 H 1 ER 5 Bb 6 So Pitching decently so far but the Cubs are being very very gentle on him. He should be performing at least this well considering his age. KCS ETA Not enough info
20th Pick Seattle Mariners- Josh Fields - AA Southern League Fields was a Georgia reliever who was a major cog in getting the Bulldogs to Omaha where he quickly collapsed. It took Fields quite a while to come to an agreement with the Mariners as he was a college senior who didn't have to sign technically until the draft this year in June. 10 G 9 IP 15 K 9 Bb 7 H 6 ER A power arm who depends on the flyball and strikeout could be a future closer on the Mariners roster and lead Jack Z to a WS implementing the 6 IP rotation with a Aumont, Fields, Morrow 7-9. KCS ETA Sept 2009
21st Pick Detroit Tigers - Ryan Perry- Part of the talented Arizona Wildcats bullpen Perry was the first 1st rounder to break into the Bigs. Expect to see this talented righthander in a Detroit bullpen for at least six years. 13 G 12.1 IP 0-1 7 H 11/10 Bb/SO 4 ER ETA - Predicted Correctly God I'm good.
22nd Pick New York Mets - Reese Havens - FSL A+ Smoaks teammate in college has taken his solid bat to pro ball and has not missed a beat at lower levels yet. Havens has been a highly sought prospect since HS and the Mets could've landed a steal here..276/.374/.533 7-2b 1-3b 6 Hr 17/21 Bb/So Showing quite a bit of pop so far Havens could be the 2b answer the Mets need. ETA 2011
23rd Pick San Diego Padres - Allan Dykstra - MWL Dykstra was injured his hip in a fall pretty significantly(BO Jackson injurly) prior to the draft and leave it to the Pads to not know the situation despite him playing his ball in their backyard. Considering their beat writer knew the details of Dykstra's injury hard to give the Padres a pass on this one. .183/.380/.317 23/22 Bb/So 8 2b 1 Hr Dykstra is showing quite a bit of patience at the plate and having some bad luck with a .238 BABIP. That being said you would expect a 22yo 1st round pick to be performing quite a bit better in the midwest league. ETA Never
24th Pick Philadelphi Phillies - Anthony Hewitt - Not Assigned '08 Stats .197/.256/.299 ETA not enough info
25th Pick Colorado Rockies - Christian Friedrich - SALLY League Power lefty pick out of Eastern Kentucky 5 GS 3-1 29 Ip 19 H 3 ER 1 Hr 45/8 SO/Bb 2.9 GB/FB Friedrich has been striking out people since being drafted and is showing that he is a step above the competition level that he is currently at. Expect a promotion to High A Modesto rather soon for Friedrich. ETA 2011
26th pick Arizona Diamond Backs - Daniel Schlereth - AA Southern League Part of that impressive Wildcats bullpen the DBacks stayed with the local talent. 8 G 9.2 IP 10 K 4 Bb 5 H 1 Hr 2 ER Schlereth is a power lefty who could be ready if the DBacks were to climb back in the playoff picture later this season. ETA 2010
27th Pick Minnesota Twins - Carlos Gutierrez - FSL Miami product without overpowering stuff who fits the mold as current great control Twins pitchers. 6 G 5 GS 1-1 1.50 ERA 30 IP 19 So 6 Bb 0 HR 16 H 2.89 FIP Gutierrez is a pretty polished starter and could move fast if the Twins needed him to. Without that need expect the Twins to take a patient approach and leave him in the minors until he is seasoned and absolutely ready to contribute. ETA 2011
28th Pick New York Yankees - Gerritt Cole - Unsigned 1st or 2nd pick 2011 if he stays healthy.
29th Pick Cleveland Indians - Lonny Chisenhall - Carolina League the first junior college player takin in the '08 draft Chisenhall was said to have a outstanding bat. .327/.383/.527 7 2b 5 Hr 9/23 Bb/So Chisenhall probably profiles more as a 3bagger than a SS and his bat should still be able to carry that position. He was POW the last week of April in the Carolina league and has outperformed former #2 picks Moustakas and Alvarez so far. ETA 2011
30th Pick Boston Red Sox - Casey Kelly - SALLY League Very interesting pick who also with Hicks and Posey could be the best athlete in the draft. The Sox have agreed to let him play the field after he reaches his innings total for the season. 4-0 5 GS 25.2 IP 21 H 2 ER 23/4 So/BB A great athlete who I'm sure the Sox will probably get to give up the SS dream if he continues to throw like this in a hitter friendly league. ETA 2012