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Twenty one picks in and....

June 5, 2008
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...a lot of the scary mock drafts are being debunked...thankfully.

No real surprises, just some mini-surprises so far. For example, Toronto drafting Cal first baseman David Cooper. If they are lucky he can stay at first base. If not, they spent the 17th pick on a DH. Jemile Weeks going at 12 is interesting as his is mostly a speed game as scouts don’t think his power will play in the pros. Ike Davis at 18 is interesting. If you had said after high school or his first year in college that he would be drafted in 2008 18th overall experts would have probably nodded their heads. But his power did not develop as expected last year and, while hitting for power early this year he also was hurt for a while. So the Mets are buying into him (a) being able to stay in RF as his power may be short if he plays 1B and (b) that his one-year (this year) power surge is for real and not just a draft year aberration. Brett Lawrie at 16 is an interesting choice and probably a good one for Milwaukee. With all the picks they have early they may have wanted to go for their highest upside guy first and, folks, no one has more upside in this draft than Lawrie, especially if he can stay at catcher. Wow, two HS catchers in the first round so far and a college catcher, Castro, who was a starting catcher at Stanford for the first time this year. The prevailing wisdom is the most risky bet is drafting a catcher (especially a HS catcher) in the first round…but don’t tell that to Minnesota who made Joe Mauer the #1 overall pick a few years ago. Working out pretty well for them as near as I can tell.

Good to see Josh Fields off the board. I didn’t like him as an Indians’ pick. With Cashner that’s two college relievers in the top 20 continuing a trend of colleges making good pitchers relievers AND pro teams biting on those guys in that role. With Weeks gone to another mock Indians’ draft bites the dust. Now Ryan Perry is off the board at 21 so we can concentrate on Gillaspie, Lynn or DeVall.

Side note: I think the Cardinals got good value at 13 with Brett Wallace from Arizona State. I wonder what would have happened had he been gone. The two St. Louis area HS pitchers (Mehlville and Odorizzi) look like high end prospects to me and I wonder if the new draft regime (Jeff Luhnow) would have pulled the trigger. Luhnow is pretty stats oriented meaning he favors college guys. I’ll tell you, if Mehlville or Odorizzi fall to the Indians, I pull the trigger over any of the three above. The present value AND upside are higher than DeVall’s and the risk is low enough that it probably trumps the present value of Gillaspie and Lynn

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