2014 Cards Draft Review

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2014 Cards Draft Review

Post by phins »

I am trying something a little different this year and recapping the draft after the signing date has passed and just reviewing what they’ve done with who they signed. The Cardinals are in an interesting place in that they have several young position players are starting to make their way to the big leagues and are holding down starting spots with the big club for the foreseeable future. What that also means is that the Cards are getting thin in position player prospects in the upper minors. The Cardinals have a model that they use when it comes to drafting though and they love to take athletic pitchers who have fast arms, plus pitchability who can command their fastballs to all quadrants and feature changeups. The Cards philosophy is one that seems to favor changeups to slider type pitchers. The changeup is thought to be less taxing on the arm than a slider is and is one of the best pitches to prevent platoon splits.

This draft class was one that featured a ton of high upside high school arms, very few high school bats and the normal polished bats in the college ranks who are not very sexy, but many teams love to take. For the Birds, they love to take “safe” type picks early, hoping to use their player development and analytics to identify underrated players later in the draft. It’s been successful for them as once again a first round pick made his debut for the big club in their first full season of professional baseball.

Their normal approach of taking high upside high schoolers after the tenth round was once again employed this year, but with far less success in actually signing the players of the past few years.

Round 1. What the Cards did: Take an athletic college arm
The Cardinals took a kid who would’ve been a top-10 pick had he been eligible after his sophomore season. Luke Weaver from Florida State is a RHP who is undersized at 6-2, 170 . As a sophomore he was routinely hitting 97 mph with a lively fastball that he can spot where he wants. As a Junior, however, his velocity was more 91-93 and touched 95 at times. Weaver is extremely athletic, with a lightning fast arm he uses to produce plus fastball velocity and add to deception on his plus changeup. His changeup is not the Bugs Bunny type changeup that Marco Gonzales features, but it is a legitimate 60 pitch. Add to it a slightly above average fastball and the fast arm action, you have a nice base to start from. Weaver has above average control and improving command.

Signed for slot at $1.843 million.

What the Cards didn’t do: Draft a finished product
I said earlier that the Cards have a type, in that they love athletic pitchers with plus command/control profiles and plus changeups. Another type the Cards love to draft is prospects who are underaged for their draft class. Weaver just recently turned 21, with a birthdate of 8/21/1993. Coupled with his slight frame and velocity he has previously shown, the hope for the Cards is that with physical development and a focus on the professional game some of the velocity will return and his fastball will jump to the plus range. The flip side of Weaver that is not a finished product is the fact that his breaking ball is well below average presently. He also throws a slider that is presently more of a show pitch. Currently, hitters get a great look at the pitch and he telegraphs his breaking ball.

Perfect world for Weaver would be a guy who develops further with professional coaching where the velocity returns with added weight and strength to make his fastball a 60, his already plus changeup would play up even more and the breaking ball develops to a 50 pitch that gives hitters something else to fear. His ability to spot his pitches would make all pitches to play up and he would settle in as a very good #3-4 SP type. If the breaking ball doesn’t develop, he has the fallback of the bullpen, where he would really have the opportunity to dominate with a fastball that would benefit from short bursts and a changeup that would get out opposite hand hitters.

What the Cards did: Take an upside guy
Jack Flaherty went to powerhouse Harvard-Westlake High School in CA and has been on the national radar for a while now. He’s a 6-4, 205 RHP who is an athletic specimen and coming into the season was expected to be taken as a power hitting 3B prospect. A player the Cards have long been interested in, Flaherty took a jump on the mound towards the end of the high school season and teams started to see him as a pitcher.

Currently, he throws 92-93 mph and has the potential to really improve the fastball more as he focuses on just pitching. His changeup is best pitch in my mind, as he great late fade on the pitch, confidence to throw in any count and he has great arm action on the pitch. Both the slider and curveball are below average currently, but he has the athletic ability, fast arm action and natural ¾ arm action to improve in this area.

Add this to the fact that Flaherty has terrific control and you have the makings of a future top prospect. Signed for $2 million, which was a surprise as he was known to be a very tough sign.

What the Cards didn’t do: Go cheap
Flaherty was an overslot sign, and while it might have been quite to the point expected, he still cost the Cards the chance to take overslot guys later on.

The player development staff will have a lot to work with here, but there is still a long way to go as Flaherty continues the trend of recent years of taking position players and making them pitchers such as Carlos Martinez, Trevor Rosenthal, Sam Tuivalala and Jason Motte. Flaherty has great control, which is the prevention of walks, but where he needs work is with his command, which is the ability to spot your pitches where you want within the strike zone. When Flaherty misses with his breaking ball, he tends to miss up, which is the worst place to miss.

Round 2. What the Cards did: Draft another athletic high schooler
Anyone who follows the MLB draft knows that your evaluation of high school players can hinge almost entirely on when you see them play. Such is the case with Ronnie Williams, an uber athletic RHP from American Heritage in Florida. Many teams scouted him over the summer when he sat 88-91 with his fastball and looked like a kid who should go to college. Williams took off this season when he recovered from some minor injuries and was hitting 97 and the Cards had a gun read 98 for him in one start. He’s a smallish 6-1, 170 right-hander who is still figuring out pitching and he had some trouble maintaining velocity late into ballgames, seeing some starts finish 88-90. He also sees his velocity reduce later in games. Williams is a kid I’ve been familiar with for some time, as he’s a Miami kid and even though I rooted for him to go Miami, he was always a kid that preferred to go pro. He was committed to Florida A & M and signed for slot at $833,900.

What the Cards didn’t do: Play it safe
When the Cards took Flaherty, it was expected they would need to take some cheap signs to get him under contract, but even though he’s a slot guy, the athleticism and fast arm make the upside quite high. Williams actually ran a 6.73 60 yard dash, would be 55/60 speed if he were a position player.
Right now, Williams would be pure projection on anything but his fastball. As is a theme with the Cards picks thus far, his arm action is extremely fast and his athleticism and repeatable high ¾ arm delivery allow him to have a chance to develop both a curve and a slider. His slider has more potential currently, but the curve has nice life. His changeup is a mess and is completely inconsistent. I did see him at a showcase and I thought he would be a very good college player. Seeing him a summer later and he had the look of someone who was already putting things together. With his athleticism and fastball he has a chance to be a dominant reliever if the breaking ball doesn’t advance.

Truth be told, this is a risky pick, but you have to appreciate the fact the Cards had a conviction on this player- seeing more often than any other team this season- and they took him when they decided the slot value matched the talent.

What the Cards did: Take a Senior with a chance
Andrew Morales has had a tough road, getting zero DI offers out of high school, so he went the Juco route and earned a big offer to UC Irvine. He was a solid pitcher as a Junior, but really took off as a Senior. He was the staff ace, an All-American and pitched his team into the CWS. Having thrown as many innings as he did in college, the Cards put him on an innings cap. The 6’, 180 lb. right-hander throws in the low-90’s with his fastball, though it is straight. He has a decent changeup with arm-side fade, but his best pitch is his curveball. It’s a really hard pitch that he throws in the low 80’s and has a lot of shape and bend to it. It’s a true swing and pitch and was plus most of the season and in his best starts was plus-plus.

What the Cards didn’t do: Take a staff ace
Morales is undersized and has little in the way of projection left in him as a college Senior. He also has a short arm action and a little effort to his delivery. Some of the things you like about the player is that he didn’t shy away from big situations- often pitching his best games in his teams’ biggest games. I think Morales can move very quickly as a reliever and could be in the big leagues within two years if the Cards decide to go that route. Born 1/16/93, he will need to move quickly to stay age appropriate. Signed for $546,100 so this was not just a money saving Senior sign, the Cards like him.

Round 4. What the Cards did: Take an athletic lefty
Austin Gomber was a redshirt sophomore for Florida Atlantic and was already their staff ace. Last year the Cardinals added several left-handers to their farm system looking to stock up on a position that had run dry within the organization. Gomber is another projectable arm to add with them. He’s 6-5, 205 and has an athletic motion that lends itself to natural deception. Another player who pitched in the Cape Cod league- a league the Cardinals put a lot of stock in- and was named the #71 prospect at the Cape by Perfect Game.

What the Cards didn’t do: Go overslot
Gomber is actually a Cardinals fan from Florida, which is a bit unusual, and was highly thought of by Baseball America (ranked #82 overall, picked 135th overall, but he was not a top draft prospect in my eyes and the fact he signed for slot money despite having two seasons of eligibility remaining tells you how the talent level is regarded by the Cardinals. He sits in the 88-91 mph range, and has actually added around 5 mph to his fastball since he enrolled. Still only 20 (11/23/93) coupled with his large frame and there is room for projection with this player remaining. His best pitch is his changeup, which I would say has the potential to be a plus pitch in the big leagues. His fastball is an average offering, but he does a good job of keeping the pitch low in the zone. Gomber also throws a slider, though it is a 35-40 pitch currently. The Cards have done a good job developing pitchers of this type in the past and there is quite a bit to work with a tall, athletic left-hander who has already performed well. Signed for $374,100.

Round 5. What the Cards did: Draft a Wong clone
Darren Seferina is a Miami kid who attended Miami Dade CC and is very similar to Kolten Wong in stature and overall profile. A 5’9”, 175 lb. ball of lightning, his best tool is his speed, which is an easy 60+. Seferina performed well-above expectations in his first foray into pro ball after signing quickly for well-below slot at $100,000.

What the Cards didn’t do: Draft a power hitter
Seferina is a player who will rely on hitting line drives and the ball on the ground to use his speed to make plays on the basepaths. I called him a Wong clone, but in reality he doesn’t profile to have near the pop that Wong has (he also bats right-handed). He has excellent bat-to-ball skills, which is the biggest trait you want to see from a player who will not profile for power. He has very soft hands at 2B and a solid-average arm. Needs to improve around the bag and turning the double play, but that is something the Cards excel at teaching. It’s CC, but a .407/.475/.504 batting line with more walks than strikeouts seems like someone to monitor.

Round 6. What the Cards did: Take a grinder
Andrew Sohn played SS at Western Michigan, where he was MAC player of the year. Sohn is a grinder type who maximizes his talent and does not rely on any one standout skill. Played well at State College with a .324/.405/.486 line that looks even better when you consider he put up a .479 wOBA which accounts for league. Right-handed hitter who wraps his bat and uses a rhythm swing with his hands and lower body. Solid to above average arm.

What the Cards didn’t do: Take a SS
Sohn will have to move to 2B eventually, which will impact whatever values he holds as a prospect markedly. 5’11”, 185 lbs. and with no plus tools, Sohn relies on a sum of his parts approach and he lacks legitimate upside. Signed for $209,700. The type who will have to prove it all the way up the ladder. I’m intrigued at the start to his career and will be interested to see how he does with a full season club. Born 5/08/93.

Round 7. What the Cards did: Take a hard-nosed C
Brian O’Keefe is a tough, gritty catcher who bats right-handed and is from St. Joseph’s. Dubbed the #244 overall prospect by Baseball America, I have to disagree with them quite a bit. I saw him as more of a strong organizational depth type player rather than an actual prospect. O’Keefe was one of the few college catchers who actually called their own game, so he is sort of a coach on the field type. 6-0, 210 lbs and solidly built with some solid strength, but very little in the way of physical projection. Born 7/15/93.

What the Cards didn’t do: Take a future starter
O’Keefe profiles to be a low average, decent power backup who can produce against lefties and give your starter a day off. He has a very strong arm, producing pop times of 1.9 (which is outstanding). In pro ball he has developed a bit of a hitch in his motion and his footwork is a mess. He doesn’t receive the ball like a natural and really needs help with his blocking ability. Signed for $150,000 which is more indicative of his talent level than the Baseball America ranking.

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What the Cards did: Take a guy I did not know
I pride myself on knowing at least something about most of the draft prospects that will be taken within the top-10 rounds of most drafts, but I must admit, in this case, I did not know anything about Nick Thompson, OF from William & Mary. I researched the young man and noticed he had some talent. He was originally drafted in the 31st round by the White Sox, but attended East Carolina instead before graduating in two and a half years and transferring to William & Mary to study cellular molecular biology and hoping to become a neuro surgeon, where he blew up. He was the VA Gatorade Player of the Year his Senior year in high school and was a nationally ranked prospect.

What the Cards didn’t do: Go for youth
Thompson is already 22 (11/13/92) and will need to prove himself at every level to be taken seriously. Thompson is a bit more than your typical Senior sign as he is a good athlete with a bit of pop. Had a great debut where he walked more than he struck out and had a .412 wOBA. Signed for $67,500 he’s an interesting kid with a great story. High school video, but he hits with an open stance from the right side and really attacks the ball out in front of the plate. Likes to pull the ball for power it appears.

What the Cards did: Draft an interesting story
Daniel Poncedeleon was the Conference USA pitcher of the year and then drafted in the 13th round by the Cubs. He agreed to terms with them and then failed a physical so the deal was voided. The NCAA declared him ineligible and he had to play in the NAIA at Embry-Riddle. He’s obviously an older prospect (1/16/92), so he will need to move quickly, but he has good size at 6-4, 180 and some stuff that translates to a possible starting role, but definitely a future bullpen role. He throws a hard sinker that sits 91-93 and touches 95. He throws a decent slider and a pretty good changeup. He’ll also throw a cutter in on the hands of lefties. The Cardinals southeastern scout, Charlie Gonzalez was at every start he made and they cross checked him multiple times with Fernando Arango, who liked him and then they brought him to the complex for a pre-draft workout. He’s been excellent at low-A and should be pushed in 2015 to see what they have in him.

What the Cards didn’t do: Draft a safe prospect
Any time a kid has been drafted four times and never signed you have to ask yourself why. Failing a physical last year adds to the questions, though he has pitched injury free for two seasons. Well-traveled kid who is from California, attended Arizona, then went Juco, then went to Houston and then to Embry-Riddle (located in Daytona, FL). He signed for only $5,000 and he’s one of the best $5,000 investments you can find in my mind. He has a legitimate chance to reach the majors in some capacity.

What the Cards did: Take another Senior sign
Danny Diekroger has a pretty line-drive swing from the left side and comes from a power program in Stanford, but he is limited in every tool and is trying to move to 3B in pro ball after playing 1B in college. He’s very mechanical in the field and doesn’t have plus hands. Older prospect (5/25/92), but he did fare well in his low-A debut with a wOBA of .394.

What the Cards didn’t do: Take a prospect in my mind
I’m just not a big fan of athletically limited, power devoid players who have to learn new positions in the minor leagues without any physical projection.

What the Cards did: Draft a diminutive lefty
Jordan Delorenzo is a smallish lefty I’ve been familiar with for a while as I wanted Miami to recruit him out of high school. He’s always been a kid who has had to survive with pitchability and without top notch stuff. He throws upper 80’s and his stuff plays up due to his motion. He has an ordinary setup and start to his motion, but then he moves his leg back beyond the rubber, crouches a bit and the ball comes out of a ¾ arm motion that hides the ball really well. He has a little 1-7 curveball that is tight and he uses it to combat against righties more than lefties.

What the Cards didn’t do: Take an upside play
Delorenzo has filled out his frame to 6-1, 205 and lacks much in the way of projection. He was recruited by Florida and some other schools out of high school, but he attended Junior College at Western Florida instead so he will need refinement to succeed at the upper levels. He’s a hittable pitcher at the professional level that I’m pretty surprised we took as highly as we did. Not a huge fan and don’t really see much in the way of return. He doesn’t have the big breaking ball to profile as a LOOGY either. Old for a Juco prospect (9/08/92).

What the Cards did: Take a groundball specialist
Matt Pearce is a Juco righty who stands 6-3, 205 and is young for his class (2/24/94). Has put on 30 lbs since high school and stays really tall in his delivery. He is a high ¾ arm slot that allows him to stay on top of the ball and get great run on his both his fastball and changeup. Command has come a long way and he’s really refined his delivery.

What the Cards didn’t do: Take a strikeout artist
Pearce struck out only 56 in 81.2 innings in Juco and then only 34 in 45 innings at rookie level Johnson City. He throws a sinking fastball in the low 90’s and a change with great arm side fade. He throws a curve as well, but it’s not major league quality. Pearce is a non-prospect to me (NP).

What the Cards did: Take a small school speedster
Blake Drake played with some big time players in his San Diego high school, but had zero offers out of high school so he eventually joined an NAIA school in Oregon. He played really well as a sophomore and was offered a chance to play for Oregon State. Never a great student, Drake always just wanted to play pro ball. He signed quickly after being drafted out of Concordia and had modest success in his first pro season. Drake’s two best tools are his speed and his arm. A 60 runner with a 55+ arm, he can play CF. 6-1, 175 and right handed, he runs a 4.2 to 1B. At Johnson City he had a .381 wOBA and controlled the strike zone fairly well.

What the Cards didn’t do: Take just a body
Drake has some legit tools and has produced since his freshman season in high school. He is a baseball grinder who just loves the game. There are some maturity issues from his past, but nothing substantial. Good bat speed and he barrels the ball fairly well. I’m intrigued the more I see him. Not a prospect just yet, but a guy to keep on the periphery.

What the Cards did: Take someone I’ve never heard of
Played for a DIII program as a non-scholarship athlete. Had a decent debut in pro ball with a .368 wOBA. Stands 6-3, 205 with a little athleticism and played LF and CF. Below average arm.

What the Cards didn’t do: Shoot for the moon
Senior sign from a DIII program who is most likely a NP.

What the Cards did: Take a solid org guy
Casey Grayson was a good player for a good Houston program. He is a 1B who plays hard and controls the strike zone. He has a Casey Kotchman type game as a point of reference. Not a comp, just an image to understand. He has no power, .153 Iso, and very little physical projection, 6-1, 215. Limited athlete who is strictly a 1B.

What the Cards didn’t do: Challenge Matt Adams
Grayson is a good player to have in your organization who will fill a need at the position wherever asked. The lefty hitter started at Johnson City to help the younger players.

What the Cards did: Double up on Casey’s
Casey Turgeon is a kid who comes from a powerhouse program in Florida who has always been a top prospect. Freshman All-American who expected to be a much higher draft pick earlier in his career. He struggled as a Junior and was expected to be a tough sign, so he fell to the Cards in the 24th round. I like Turgeon quite a bit. He’s a gritty type kid who controls the strike zone and is extremely competitive. He’s limited to 2B defensively and isn’t a huge power guy. He did play the entire season at 21, though he started at Johnson City. Posted a .416 wOBA with more walks than strikeouts. A .140 Iso is passable for a middle infielder, but he succeeds by controlling the strike zone and making plus contact.

What the Cards didn’t do: Waste a pick
I’d like to see him challenged with a move up to a full season team and see exactly what the Cards have. You’d expect a player from an advanced program like Florida to do well at the rookie level, but without top notch tools, he’s going to be challenged to do it all the way up the ladder. Played in the Cape Cod league, but was not a standout.

What the Cards did: Drafted a prototype frame
Landon Beck pitched very well to start his career and starred at a lower level in college. Perfect pitchers frame at 6-3, 215. A little light on stuff, but has a reliever profile and allows his stuff to play up in short stints.

What the Cards didn’t do: Take a starter
The Cards will probably give him a chance to start, but his best chance will be to carve out a role as a reliever. More of an org. arm whose best pitch is a changeup, which allows him to have success against either handed hitters. Still only 21 (12/09/92).

What the Cards did: Take a competitive org. arm
Tyler Bray was a reliever for his team and loves to compete. Pitched well and earned a promotion up to Peoria. Already 23 (10/03/91) he needs to move quickly to have any chance. 6-5, 200 and has added some weight and strength to his frame, which has helped his velocity into the upper 80’s.

What the Cards didn’t do: Take a conventional pitcher
Bray comes from below his waist and gives right handers fits with his motion. He’s a ROOGY only type, but he really gives them trouble, striking out almost 40% of righties he faced. Intriguing to have a chance from such a low draft pick.

What the Cards did: Take a position change guy
Cole Lankford does not really have the tools to be a big league catcher, so he was moved to 3B and LF. He played for Texas A & M, so he does have nice SEC experience, but he lacks tools, physical projection, athleticism and is a NP.

What the Cards did: Take another small school guy
I don’t know much about Tyler Dunnington and won’t pretend I do. Dunnington was not very successful at the DII level, but did strike out 24 in 14 1/3 innings. Reliever with below average command, but does throw in the 90’s. Looks like an org. arm.

What the Cards did: Sign an upside play
Bryan Dobzanski is a Northeastern high school pitcher who is a physical marvel. He is a rocked up 6-4, 220 and has all kinds of physical projection and development opportunities as a cold weather pitcher new to baseball. He is now 19 (8/31/95), but has very little in the way of pitching experience. Dobzanski has been up to 94 with his fastball and it projects to be a plus offering at the big league level. He also exhibits excellent control for such a young pitcher. The Cardinals signed him for $700,000 to lure him away from Louisville, which is the fourth highest bonus they gave to any player in their draft and one of the highest amounts for any pitcher after the top-10 rounds.

What the Cards didn’t do: Draft a finished player
Dobzanski currently has nothing to speak of as far as breaking stuff. He’s basically a fastball only pitcher who throws a slurvy, loopy curveball that would be lucky to be a 30 pitch. He has shown some feel for a changeup that has some sink and fade, but he slows his arm to throw it. This is a long-term bet on upside due to physical projection and natural arm strength. He was an undefeated state champion wrestler who had college opportunities in that sport as well. I like wrestlers because they have extreme discipline and commitment, maintain their flexibility and are usually tough and competitive. All that said, he is not truly a $700,000 talent and he admitted that himself as he was shocked at the Cards offer (the only offer they made shortly before the deadline). After missing out on some other top talent after the top-10 rounds, give the Cards credit for utilizing the rest of their available funds and getting one upside play signed before the deadline. Arm action really reminds me of Justin Masterson from just a tick higher slot. He really allows the hitter to time him, so it’d be nice to clean that up just a bit. In the course of writing this, I then looked up his stats and see that he had a swinging K percentage of only 8.6%, which matches what I see when I watch him; he allows a lot of contact because the hitter can time him.

What the Cards did: Fill an org. need
The Cards needed another pitcher to round out their rosters and they took one in Josh Wirsu out of Georgia Southern. He has very little in the way of stuff and has below average control, as evidenced by his 8:2 BB/K ratio. Upper 80’s fastball/curveball type. Pedestrian stuff and poor control equals NP.

What the Cards did: Take the DIII HR champ
Julian Barzilli led DIII in HR’s, but just isn’t a guy with the tools to reach the big leagues. Currently a 3B, but probably has to move to 1B professionally and is nowhere near the hitter to play that position in the big leagues.

What the Cards did: Draft from a familiar place
Cody Schumacher pitched at familiar Missouri State and was the Friday starter for them. A Juco senior sign, he had shoulder issues for the past two seasons but had success when healthy. He’s upper 80’s/low 90’s and has a great slider. Older, smallish, little stuff, shoulder woes means NP.

Sasha Kuebel is a local name who can touch 92, Chase Raffield is short on tools in the OF, Davis Ward was our version of Mr. Irrelevant.

Draft recap: For the Cards, this draft was really one that will rely on the outcome of Luke Weaver, Jack Flaherty, Ronnie Williams and Bryan Dobzanski. They decided to go pitching heavy early and shied away from high upside types early. That’s not to say they didn’t swing for the fences a bit and take some chances. Trevor Magill was a 3rd round pick coming off arm injury who told teams he was returning to school and he kept his word. Justin Bellinger was a huge power hitter who was rumored to be a tough sign with a commitment to Duke and he followed through on that commitment. The Cards offered him $750,000 to sign, but he wanted a million to forego college. Missing the extra money from that 3rd round bonus slot cost them the ability to go that high with their bonus. I’m not sure Bellinger was a million dollar player, so you can’t blame them too much, but that was a silly pick looking back. They could’ve gone with a Senior in that slot and left themselves a lot more money to spread around to some of the high school kids taken after the top-10 rounds. That list includes Derek Casey, a tough-minded righty who throws 92 and has a great slider. He went to Virginia and will be a big prospect in three years. Tristan Hildebrandt is a CA high school SS with the athleticism to stick at the position, though he has questions with the bat. He has a quick bat, short stroke, tends to make hard contact and can run a sub-7.0 60. Arm strength has improved and I’d have really liked to sign him. He will head to Cal State Fullerton and be a guy to watch in three years. Dustin Beggs is a Juco who touched 95 with a nice, clean arm action. Reliever type that I’m surprised didn’t sign. Dominic Thompson-Walls was a first year Juco with plus athleticism and really played well his first year. Wanted a lot to sign and the Cards declined. Joe Gillette is probably the kid I am most disappointed we were unable to sign. He had a solid commitment to Oregon State and wanted a lot of money to sign. The Cards took him late hoping to throw some cash at him, but couldn’t convince him. I love his defensive actions at 3B, with great hands, athleticism and arm strength. He’s 6-3, 190 and runs a 6.54 60 at that size. Pull approach at the plate and is a very aggressive hitter. Needs to learn plate discipline, but power projection is there and tools to start at the big league level one day. Anthony Herron is a local kid who once was a much bigger prospect than at the time the draft came around. Earlier was sitting 92-93 but was mid-80’s by May and even lower at some pre-draft visits. Best pitch is a splitter that just disappears. Smallish frame and will head to Indiana State. Hoped we’d sign him though as he has a reliever profile if the velocity comes back. Michael Bono is a kid I really liked as well. He has a lightning fast arm in a small physical frame. Can get it up to 94 at 6-1, 176 and really projects to throw a great curveball with refinement. When we took him really late I expected him to go to college, but I was still disappointed we couldn’t get him away from Santa Clara. Colleges missed the boat on this CA kid in my eye. George Iskendarian was a Juco infielder who is a plus defender at 3B and has some bat speed. Not enough tools to profile in the bigs and had a strong commitment to Miami.

Interesting draft in the fact I really liked a lot of the high school kids we took later in the draft and tried to sign, which gives me confidence in our scouting staff, but the whiff on Megill was puzzling and really impactful on our overall draft. I never saw him as any better than the 3rd round area we took him as a talent, so the move was all risk without much upside. We were only able to add one C to a position that lacks depth and the position players were able to sign were underwhelming. I’d give our draft a solid C+ at this point given the resources we had and the guys we were actually able to bring into the fold. Thanks for sticking with me until the end.

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Re: 2014 Cards Draft Review

Post by Woolkins »

Thank you so much for doing this.

For me, outside of the top guys, I tend to forget all about the players until/if they make any prospect noise. I had actually even totally put it out of my mind the failure to sign Magill and Bellinger.

Do you see both Flaherty and a Weaver as top ten prospects for us? Top 5 for Flaherty?

Thanks again for putting the time in for this.

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Re: 2014 Cards Draft Review

Post by phins »

Woolkins wrote:Thank you so much for doing this.

For me, outside of the top guys, I tend to forget all about the players until/if they make any prospect noise. I had actually even totally put it out of my mind the failure to sign Magill and Bellinger.

Do you see both Flaherty and a Weaver as top ten prospects for us? Top 5 for Flaherty?

Thanks again for putting the time in for this.
Thanks, that's kind of you to say.

Yes to both questions. I'm going to post my top-21 (really more like 35 with write-ups on the top-21) within the next month. That's a pretty massive undertaking, but I'm having a baby soon, so I'll be home a lot.

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Re: 2014 Cards Draft Review

Post by lukethedrifter »

Congrats on the baby. Now I can't remember, you're second?

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Re: 2014 Cards Draft Review

Post by phins »

lukethedrifter wrote:Congrats on the baby. Now I can't remember, you're second?
This is our first! Little baby girl that we're going to name Avery Jewel.

Thanks friend.

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Re: 2014 Cards Draft Review

Post by lukethedrifter »

That's awesome. A beautiful name. I love(d) having a daughter.

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Re: 2014 Cards Draft Review

Post by AWvsCBsteeeerike3 »

phins wrote:
I'm going to post my top-21 (really more like 35 with write-ups on the top-21) within the next month. That's a pretty massive undertaking, but I'm having a baby soon, so I'll be home a lot.
:) Congrats again. With a baby, I wouldn't equate time at home to free time though!

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Re: 2014 Cards Draft Review

Post by Jocephus »

congrats and thanks for the write up

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Re: 2014 Cards Draft Review

Post by stlouie_lipp »

I just saw this and look forward to reading in detail tomorrow. Thanks for doing this. It might just be the best thing you've ever created :)

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Re: 2014 Cards Draft Review

Post by jim »

Thank you very much for posting this, I'm just getting around to working through it - that's on the itinerary for tomorrow. I'm looking forward to it.

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