Monday, December 29, 2008
Studs McGrew Cobbfather's trashy reporter
Our star reporter caught The_Kid trying to leave the Country today. Rumor has it, he will be gone for about 2 months. No one is saying "why", or if anything is wrong. But this snap shot says it all. Everyone can see the facts in this picture taken by our fearless reporter. One could assume that The_Kid was upset when he was turned down by ploppie's sister again. Upset and very hurt, The_Kid just pooled his allowance money from previous Birthdays and bought himself "a companion" for his trip. But I assure you I will get the facts on his absence for this duration of time.
Wednesday, December 17, 2008
The final installment of this year's draft recap covers Arizona through Buffalo. Hope you have enjoyed reading the evaluations. Let's get on with the last batch!
First round pick Brendan Henderson is listed as a SS, but is really projects more as a 3rd baseman in the majors. He should be able to hold his own at the plate in the majors, although the numbers like won’t be spectacular. LF Kerry Wilkins was a great value pick in round 3, as he projects to be a very good major league caliber hitter. 5th rounder Miguel Tavarez looks like he might be a decent reliever, and possibly make the big club.
Final analysis: got 2 very good hitters, Wilkins was a great pick for a 3rd rounder.
Draft Grade: B
Top pick Dustin Schmidt should be a sure fire future major leaguer. He has great splits, nice power, good contact, and good enough batting eye. His field skills project as a 3rd Baseman. Good pick. Supplemental round pick Dwight Flaherty should make the majors as a #5 starter or long reliever, with mediocre control and RH split holding him back from further upside. 2nd rounder Oscar Long has tremendous power and a keen batting eye. He should make an impact in the majors. They landed a few other fringe major league pitchers with their remaining early pick.
Final analysis: got a couple of good bats, Long was a great pick for a 2nd rounder. And one or two of their pitchers drafted could make the majors.
Draft Grade: B+
Boise Super Spuds
Top pick Chick Tollberg is a solid lefty with elite control and great pitch selection. Lefties will find it difficult to hit him, but he could be a bit more vulnerable to righties. His big weakness, other than a girly first name, is that he gives up a lot of fly balls. They landed another nice lefty with their 2nd first round pick in Brett Brown. He projects solid across the board, and should be a very nice contributor in a major league rotation. In the supp round they landed Rudy Kielty who has good splits and batting eye, but isn’t as powerful as a bat as you’d like to see for a left fielder. 3rd rounder Kent Carlyle has nice power, and was a good value pick. They landed a couple of a defensive wonders in rounds 4 and 5 at SS and CF.
Final analysis: They landed 2 very good pitchers, and some solid major league level type role players. Excellent draft.
Draft Grade: A
Top pick Vern Lowe is a tremendous bat who can absolutely crush the ball. His fielding skills may not justify his current position of 2B, put he will be a huge asset to the lineup wherever he plays in the bigs. 2nd rounder Ray Sweeney is a nice contact hitter who has the defensive skills to play Center Field. Unfortunately, he tore his hamstring in a workout with Wiki Vazquez from the affiliate Atlanta Pitbulls and will be lost until early next season. 3rd rounder Milt Pickering could reach the majors as a long reliever if he hits his projections, but the 6 mil signing bonus is questionable at best. Boston landed a couple of more good hitters and decent relievers with the rest of their early picks.
Final analysis: Good draft, but minus points for letting your draft picks work out with Wiki Vazquez and giving your 3rd round pick a 6 million dollar signing bonus.
Draft Grade: B+
Top pick Benji Speaker is a very good hitter with good hitting projections across the board. His fielding projections seem to bring into question his ability to play 2B at the major league level, but he might be able to pass by. Good pick though, his bat will be a plus in a major league lineup once he develops. Supp round pick Corey Cornelius is a decent hitting SS/3B who is probably a major league backup, but could start in a pinch. Jose Johnson is a nice value pick in the 2nd round with a decent bat, and nice fielding skills. Thomas Sanford is a good value in the 3rd round, he’s a solid RP, and Phil Ryan in the 4th is a good value as well.
Final analysis: Got one major league starter for sure, and a bunch of other role player types, not a bad draft at all.
Draft Grade: B
Part 5 of the draft recap covers Burlington through Durham. Here's the scoop:
Top pick Efrain Martin has a huge stick, the guy can mash, and projects to have an unmatched batting eye. Good news for Burlington, he looks like he has the skills to catch at the major league level. His weakness is his durability, he may only be good for 110-120 games per year. Still, they’ll get great production in those games. Supplemental round pick Herm Trammell looks like a #3 or #4 starter in the bigs with outstanding control, great splits and a tough splits. He may have trouble keeping the ball down. They added a great fielding shortstop in round 3 in Kennie Cooke who could be a big league backup. The rest of their early picks were pitchers who are fringe major leaguers, at best.
Final Analysis: Martin is a great hitting catcher, and Trammell was a nice value pick in the supplemental round.
Draft Grade: B+
Top pick Davey Fernandez is a right handed starter with phenomenal control, and 3 dominating pitches. His splits project well. His weaknesses are that he struggles at time to keep the ball down in the zone, and doesn’t have a great injury rating. That being said, he should be a #2 SP in the bigs, with #1 upside. 2nd rounder Esteban Marquez looks to be a major league quality reliever. 3rd rounder Rolando Santayana could be a major league backup. They got a good value pick in 5th rounder Lariel Tavarez, who has major league potential as possibly a long reliever.
Final analysis: Cheyenne improved their pitching in this draft, and had some good value picks. A nice draft indeed.
Draft grade: B+
First rounder Jesus Sanchez is a shortstop with a great, accurate arm, but below average glove for a shortstop. His bat isn’t all that impressive, and he has some speed. Their 2nd first rounder, Albert Dali is a 2nd baseman who should be able to handle the position fielding wise, has great speed, and should be decent at the plate. Supp pick Jimmy Morton has good control and pitch selection, but mediocre splits and poor GB/FB ratio. He may end up as a long reliever in the bigs. 3rd rounder Stone Grimsley is a decent CF, who could be a backup at the major league level. Eugene Blanton was decent value pick in the 5th.
Final analysis: The Chokers got some good players with Major League potential, but they could have done better with 3 picks in the top 38.
Draft Grade: C
Cincinnati Flying Pigs
Top pick Tommy Schalik is a hard throwing righty with two dominant pitches and great control. He doesn’t project to have great splits, which will probably hold him back from achieving ace status. Still, he should be able to contribute in the big leagues. 2nd rounder Ray Creek has great range and speed, and is a good contact hitter, but appears to lack the batting eye to be an effective major league hitter. Their other early picks yielded pitchers who are borderline major leaguers.
Final analysis: Schalik should pitch in the majors, but the rest of their draft wasn’t that impressive.
Draft Grade: C
1st rounder Alex Coombs is pure hitter with phenomenal splits and batting eye, and very good contact and power. How effective he’ll be as a catcher is in question, but he could pass by at the major league level if he hits his projections. No matter where he plays, he’ll be a major threat at the plate. 2nd rounder Curtis Sullivan projects to be a very good reliever, and could even close in the majors one day. The Radicals continued to load up on relievers, picking them all the way through the 9th round. And he got some very good values.
Final analysis: Excellent draft, Coombs is a great bat, and they got a LOT of good relievers. Draft might have been better if they diversified and didn’t pick exclusively relievers in rounds 2-9, but they definitely improved their bullpen!
Draft Grade: A-
Tuesday, December 16, 2008
I your soulbrother and faithful Gazette Reporter, Leon Jackson, must come clean that I posted a draft recap about Fargo that wasn't well researched. Based on the infamous draft history of mrploppie, I figured he got the usual band of stiffs that he gets most drafts, and didn't really look at the players. So the F draft grade was based on past history of the owner, and not the guys drafted this year. After looking over the players he got, they are better than the usual crop of ploppie's draftees who only would ever be on a major league field as a groundskeeper or bat boy. Furthermore, he didn't have a first round pick, only a couple of supplemental picks. Therefore, we upgrade his draft to a B-, and here's the two supp picks he got that have major league potential. Handsome fellows they are!!
Part 4 of the Draft recap covers Fargo through Huntington. Let's get it on!
Fargo Rat Bastids
I’m putting as much effort into the Fargo draft recap as ploppie put into his draft prep!!
Final analysis: horrible
Draft Grade: F
Florida Shark Waves
Florida’s first rounder Terrell Blair is a contact hitter, with good splits. He isn’t quite good enough defensively to play shortstop, but will be a tremendous fielding 3rd baseman. Although he may be relegated to backup duty on the major league level due to only having an average bat. Florida didn’t sign any other draft picks, so we’ll stop here!
Final Analysis: Blair is great defensively, but may lack the bat to be a starting 3B at the big league level. No other signings hurts the draft grade, fo sho!
Draft Grade: D
1st round pick Joseph Hyun is crafty lefty with superior control, great splits, and excellent bases. He does have a low GB/FB ratio, but I don’t see that holding back his success. I’d say he’s a #2 starter on the Major League level, with ace upside. Good value at #19. Supplemental pick Magglio Marichal is a hard throwing lefty reliever with definite closer potential in the majors. And dude, can you believe their second supplemental pick? Dude Beltre! Dude has excellent splits and pitches, but his mediocre control may land him in a bullpen role once he hits the majors. They landed a couple of more good pitchers later on as well.
Final Analysis: Honolulu came away with a handful of good pitchers. Nice draft.
Draft Grade: A-
First rounder Willy Murray has great pitches and splits, but mediocre control. Still, he could be an end of the rotation guy in the majors, and with the 30th pick, this is about as good as you could hope for. Supplemental pick Tony Witt projects to be an excellent major league reliever, and could close. Vinny Thomas has great power and batting eye and should crush lefties. Low contact is a weakness, but he should definitely contribute at the major league level. Great value in round 2, probably slipped because of signability issues, but Houston got his ink on a contract. Another 2nd rounder, Louis Benjamin, has great baserunning skills, and could be a nice backup in the majors.
Final Analysis: Nice draft. Getting Thomas in Round 2 was a big plus.
Draft Grade: B+
First round pick Hector Andrus is a great fielding shortstop, but his poor bat, particularly his splits, may make him questionable as a solid first round pick. Supplemental pick Pete Wilkins, also a shortstop, doesn’t have quite the glove that Andrus does, but looks like he’ll be a lot better at the plate, particularly against lefties. The rest of the early picks are ok, probably a borderline major leaguer or two. Their draft will improve if 2nd supplemental pick Tyler Caseres signs, although he appears to be holding out and demanding serious cash.
Final Analysis: Huntington got some decent players, but no one really jumps out as having a major impact in the big leagues.
Draft Grade: C
Part 3 of the draft recap takes a look at Kansas City through Monterrey. Without further adieu...
Kansas City Tweakers
1st rounder Troy Duran is a hard throwing lefty who was great control and can keep the ball down, and has 2 great pitches. His splits are his weakness and probably knock him down to #2/#3 starter status. Still he should be a good major league starter. 2nd rounder Johnnie Simpson has major league potential as well as a #5 starter or long reliever. 3rd rounder Pedro DeLeon is a fringe major leaguer as well, probably as a backup.
Final analysis: not a bad first draft at all for dirtyhill
Draft Grade: B-
1st rounder Peaches Hernandez can flat out crush the ball, and has nice splits and batting eye, and is solid in the field as well. Low durability and injury rating are a minus, but still a great pick. The next 4 picks were all SP / long relief types who are fringe major leaguers.
Final analysis: Hernandez is great, and maybe one or two of the pitchers they got after the first round will pan out as major leaguers.
Draft Grade: B
First rounder Lawrence Zoltan projects to have great control and nice splits. He throws hard and has two good pitches. Weaknesses include low injury rating and 3 not so great pitches. Still, not a bad value for the 16th pick. Supplemental round pick Skeeter Brewer is a contact hitter with good enough power and a high lefty split. He also projects good enough defensively to play catcher at the majors. His downside is mediocre splits and batting eye and low durability. Nonetheless, a good pickup for where he was taken. Memphis didn’t have another pick til the 4th, and didn’t land anyone of note.
Final analysis: Memphis ended up with 2 very good players.
Draft Grade: B
Mexico City Gringos
Shortstop Zach Charles is everything you’d expect out of a number one overall pick. If developed properly, he should be a perennial MVP candidate. He really has no weaknesses, except that he can’t pitch too. 2nd rounder Louis Sullivan has great pitches and splits, but his low control rating is a red flag. 4th rounder Jumbo Roque is an outstanding catcher defensively, but doesn’t offer much at the plate.
Final analysis: Zach Charles is a true STUD and Sullivan and Roque could be role players on a major league roster one day.
Draft Grade: A-
Supplemental round pick Donnie Richard can flat out crush the ball. 2nd rounder Malcolm Marquis is a solid reliever who could potentially contribute at the major league level. The only problem is that neither have signed yet. Their next few picks look like their upside is as major league backups or long relievers.
Final analysis: Their entire draft hinges on Richard and Marquis signing.
Draft Grade: C- for now, B if Richard and Marquis sign.
Monday, December 15, 2008
Part 2 of the draft analysis covers New York (both Franchises) through Pawtucket. Let's dig in!
New York Pride of the Yankees
Enrique Pulido is a crafty reliever with projected unmatched control, superior ground ball/fly ball factor, and efficiency vs. RHB. He has all the makings of a dominant future closer. Well done from the 29th pick. New York picked up 2 more quality relievers in rounds 3 and 4 in Derek Duffy and Ike Diaz. 2nd rounder Lon Ardoin and 5th rounder Alan Price are fringe major leaguers at best.
Final analysis: New York definitely bolstered their bullpen in this draft. They could have gotten better value out of their 2nd round pick, however.
Draft Grade: B
New York Primetimers
1st round pick Rob Pellow is a hard throwing lefty with good control and solid pitches. His weaknesses are he tends to leave the pull up in the zone and is only mediocre vs. righties (as most lefties are). Pellow should be a very good #3 starter in the Majors, and his upside is higher than that. 2nd rounder Trenidad Gandarilla has major league potential as a #5 SP or long reliever. Nice value in round 2. Not much to speak of for the Primetimers after their top 2 picks.
Final analysis: The Primetimers got 2 nice prospects in the first 2 rounds, but after that, their draft was a bit of a disappointment.
Draft Grade: B-
Keith Hayes is a solid bat, with exceptional power, and who will hit righties well. Batting eye, contact, and lefty split are good enough. He should be able to string together a nice streak of 30 HR seasons once he hits the majors. 2nd rounder Nick Offerman should make the majors as a reliever, although may struggle with lefties. 4th round reliever Nick Hall was a nice value, with major league potential.
Final analysis: Hayes is a great bat, and Hall was a good value pick, but probably could have done better in rounds 2 and 3.
Draft Grade: B-
Oklahoma City Fighting Lint
Alex Mathews looks to be a superstar 5-tool player in the making with solid projections across the board, including the ability to be solid in the field at 2B if he reaches his projections. 2nd rounder Mitchell Cooper is a contact hitting 2B/CF who has major league potential as well. 4th rounder Morgan Adams was a good value pick.
Final Analysis: Mathews should be great, and they got another solid bat, plus a decent reliever in the 4th. They did pretty well here.
Draft Grade: B+
Eduardo Redondo is a terrific bat with great power and batting eye, and good splits and contact. Lacks fielding skills, but his bat will fit in nice in a major league lineup at 1B or LF. Alfredo Stone is solid, but not spectacular across the board hitting-wise, and is a nice pickup for a 2nd rounder. Not much else in terms of major league potential.
Final analysis: Redondo and Stone are good bats, but didn’t get much else.
Draft Grade: C+
First Rounder Trent Gray projects to be a good major league setup guy. He’s strong across the board projections wise, but not spectacular. 2nd rounder Houston Jones, another reliever has superb control and 2 great pitches, but his splits are mediocre. Probably can be a decent setup B type guy in the majors.
Final analysis: Gray and Houston are ok, but not overly impressive, and they really didn’t get much else.
Draft Grade: C-
It's Leon Jackson back to drop some knowledge on this year's draft. Part one of the series covers Philadelphia through Syracuse. Let's get right into it.
Philadelphia Plopping Penguins
First rounder John Nakajima is a great contact hitter with decent power and a nice batting eye. It looks like he will have trouble hitting lefties, however, and could be a liability at the plate against them. He’ll be a great hitter to have against righties though. 2nd round pick Mark Rose is one of the better fielding shortstops in the draft, but has a questionable bat. 5th rounder Dustin Miller was a good value pick and could be a Major League backup.
Final analysis: Philly got some good players, but overall we think they could have gotten more value with their picks than what they got.
Overall Grade: C
Rochester Rolling Rocks
#2 overall pick Roy Jackson will be a top of the rotation starter for years to come. He has great control and great splits. He doesn’t have any dominating pitches that you usually see from a staff ace, so that would be his only weakness. Still his pitches are good enough, and his other qualities will help him overcome not having one or two dominating pitches. The Rolling Rocks also got Rashun Hughes, solid reliever with great control who will keep the ball down. He’ll be in the majors one day. They landed slick fielding shortstop Edgar Pascual in round 4 as well.
Final analysis: Jackson is a top of the rotation type starter, but after that they didn’t land a lot of depth.
Overall Grade: B
Sacramento Fighting Cornish Hens
Antonio Singleton is a crafty hurler with great control, keeps the ball down and is outstanding vs. righties. Weaknesses include a mediocre LH split, and his pitches are just ok. Singleton will be a good #2 or #3 starter though, and you can’t really ask for more than that with the 28th pick. The Hens landed Dummy Foster and Marc Burns in rounds 2 and 3. Each could be a #5 starter or Long Reliever at the ML level if they fully develop. 4th rounder Davy Blake could make it as a ML backup with his great fielding.
Final analysis: solid draft for picking from the bottom of the order.
Overall Grade: B+
San Diego Burgundy
San Diego did a great job landing Mark Randall. He has great control and is solid vs. righties, and keeps the ball down. Perhaps his biggest asset, however, is 3 outstanding pitches. He also has a great pitcher’s park to pitch in. Sounds to me like a future ace. 3rd rounder Wallace Nichols has big league potential if his splits fully develop. Other than those two, not much major league potential from the rest of the picks.
Final Analysis: Randall is a future ace and Nichols was a nice grab in the 3rd round. Could have gotten better value out of their 2nd rounder.
Overall Grade: B
Sioux Falls Great Danes
Kid Torres was their first round pick, and he has all of the makings of a dominant future Major League closer. It’s hard to find anything bad to say about him, he has great potential across the board. 2nd rounder Randall Hill is another reliever with Major League potential. He should be able to overcome a shaky GB/FB ratio and contribute as a solid setup guy. They got a couple of borderline major leaguers after that, but nothing to write home about.
Final Analysis: The Danes got 2 great ML potential relievers. Torres should contend for many a Fireman of the Year award.
Overall Grade: B-
Alex Lopez is a hard throwing lefty with great control, and an outstanding array of pitches. Weaknesses include mediocre RH split and GB/FB ratio. Still he should be extremely effective at the ML level, and projects to be a solid #2/#3 type starter. With no 2nd rounder, Syracuse landed a good hitting catcher Chuck Mahomes in the 3rd. They also landed good value picks in the 4th and 5th in Russ Stovall and Del Rodriguez.
Final Analysis: Syracuse got a great pitcher in the first and some nice value picks later on. Very good draft.
Overall Grade: A-
Thursday, December 11, 2008