Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Season 7 Draft Review -- Scranton Meal Ticket

With Scranton we once again have an opportunity to review a new owner's first draft. As a franchise, Scranton has bounced between being good to not-so-good before going into full rebuild mode last season. That rebuild continues, and below we'll discuss the Season 7 draft for the Scranton organization.

1st rounder (3rd overall) Lyle Wallace is everything you could want out of a top 5 pick. A true TORP (top-of-the-rotation pitcher), Wallace brings a plus curveball (perhaps even plus-plus), and backs that with an above average fastball and change-up. He also sports a slider that lags the other pitches, but is still more than just a show-me pitch. He shows the potential to command all his pitches, and he's extremely effective against any batter. Doesn't throw hard, but doesn't need to in order to be effective. A true horse, Wallace has the potential to front a rotation and make 35 starts and reach well over 200 innings each year. A great pick by Scranton.

2nd rounder Graham Murray is a high contact hitter with good speed. Should develop into a fine RF, he won't hit for power and will struggle against RH pitching (even though he's a lefty), but his ability to make good contact against LH pitching combined with his ability to cause havoc on the basepaths should allow Murray at least a platoon role.

3rd rounder Tommy Worthington has very, very good power and should be a solid OBP candidate, even though he struggles at times to make contact. A slash line of .250/.350/.450 with ~30HR probably isn't too unrealistic. Pretty solid pick for the 3rd round.

4th rounder Matthew Barry is solid starter prospect, but may end up as a long man in the bigs. Barry brings a solid fastball and the ability to locate it at will. He's very effective against LH hitters, and while it's a stretch to think he'll be a big league starter, he could find his way into the bullpen and be a solid long man. I'm intrigued enough by his ability to get lefties out that I'll make Barry my sleeper pick for Scranton.

The rest of the draft provided an opportunity for Scranton to add some much needed depth to their farm system. There were some solid defensive players taken that should help supplement the development of the higher-ceiling guys. I'll grade the draft as a B all on the heels of Wallace. When you have a top 5 pick, you need to take advantage of it, and Scranton clearly did. Very nicely done by the new ownership for Scranton.

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