May
30

2011 Draft: Dillon Howard

By

The draft is just seven days away, so between now and then I’m going to highlight some players individually rather than lump a few together in one post.

Dillon Howard | RHP

Background
The best draft prospect in Arkansas, Howard has been on the radar for a long time thanks to his consistently impressive performances at showcase events and with summer traveling teams. He hasn’t had a great senior year at Searcy High School, but no one gets drafted based on high school stats. He’s committed to Arkansas.

Scouting Report
A 6-foot-3, 200 lb. right-hander, Howard has pitched consistently at 91-94 with a fastball that runs in on righties, and he’s gotten it up as high as 96 in the past. He could legitimately sit in the mid-90′s once he’s done growing. Howard’s breaking ball is inconsistent, resembling a curveball on some days and a slider on others, but he’s certainly shown the ability to make the ball spin. His changeup is very much a work in progress, as is his overall command despite a sound delivery. Howard is an athletic kid that played all over the infield in high school, and his passion for the game shows in his play.

Miscellany
Last week we heard that the Yankees are “heavily in” on Howard, who is supposedly asking for big bucks to skip out on the Razorbacks. The kid has a chance for a big time fastball with a power breaking ball, which are instant tools for success. Howard has significant upside, and adding a changeup will give him true top of the rotation ability. The draft class is deep enough that teams unwilling to meet his asking price will have viable alternatives, so it’s not impossible that he could still be around when the Yankees pick at number 51.

Keith Law and Baseball America ranked Howard as the 18th and 31st best prospect in the draft in their latest rankings.

Categories : Draft
  • Jake H

    this is one of the top guys I want the Yankees to draft.

  • dan l

    I want high school hitters instead of pitchers.

    • Charles

      Imo I want the pitchers, get the guys with the raw stuff into the system before they get more mileage on their arm in college. Plus imo its easier to groom a pitcher than it is a hitter, hitters have to switch from Metal to Wood while pitchers just move up to another level.

      I see the Yanks taking either a high ceiling high school pitcher for overslot or taking a guy who dropped out of the 1st round with injuries.

    • jon

      Id rather hs pitches and college hitters

      • JohnnyC

        In a recent interview, Damon Oppenheimer noted that a hidden strength of this year’s draft is high school position players. However, I think the Yankees prefer to select high school arms and college hitters in the early rounds.

        • pat

          Our last two first round picks were high school bats.

        • Ted Nelson

          “I think the Yankees prefer to select high school arms and college hitters in the early rounds.”

          Based on what?

  • Bob Michaels

    At 51 i would take Howard if Still available.

  • dan l

    The Yankees have plenty of high ceiling pitchers in the system already but we need bats. High school bats are the most likely outcome imo.

    • Ted Nelson

      I wouldn’t call position prospects a “need” by any means. With Jesus, Romine, CoJo, Slade, Sanchez, Flores, Murphy, Culver, Williams, Gumbs, Segadin, etc. all in the system there are plenty of bats. I think the Yankees should make what they consider to be the best pick, and not worry about need.

  • IB6 UB9

    Tsuphe Yankees will draft a guy that nobody has on their radar, even though big names they have been linked to are available. In the hours and days after the draft fans will convince themselves that the Yankee scouts know more than the list compilers and support the pick. The Yankees will spend enough to be on the fringe of top 10 spending with some fans hoping for a focus on the July IFA market.

    • YankeeGrunt

      Why? Brackman, Hughes and Joba were all guys who fell due to salary demands, even Heathcott was an overslot. Cito Culver is the only one who supports what you’re saying.

      • Ted Nelson

        Exactly

  • IB6 UB9

    Tsuphe Yankees will draft a guy that nobody has on their radar, even though big names they have been linked to are available. In the hours and days after the draft fans will convince themselves that the Yankee scouts know more than the list compilers and support the pick.

  • IB6 UB9

    Yankees will draft a guy that nobody has on their radar, even though big names they have been linked to are available. In the hours and days after the draft fans will convince themselves that the Yankee scouts know more than the list compilers and support the pick.

  • IB6 UB9

    Yankees will draft a guy that nobody has on their radar. Big names they have been linked to are available. After the draft fans will convince themselves that the Yankee scouts know more than the list compilers and support the pick.

  • IB6 UB9

    Yankees will draft a guy that nobody has on their radar. Big names they have been linked to will be available.

  • IB6 UB9

    Sorry for all the posts – I got a post not sent message and tried to shorten it.

  • Bunting?…More like Punting If You Ask Me

    Dillon!

  • Phil

    The Rays have 11 picks in the first two rounds, the bosox 4 of the first 40 picks, & we only have 2 in the first 80+? Pardon me while I feel nauseous.

    Whatever & whenever, I want arms, baby, lots of arms, arms from every angle & direction. As that ancient hall of fame baseball scout once said, “To be or not to be, that is the question. Whether ’tis nobler in the mind to suffer the slings and arrows of outrageous fortune, or take up ARMS against a sea of troubles, and by opposing, end them.” Yeah, baby; find me some arms! Hey, some terrific every day players who can knock the ball around the yard would be good too.

    I’ve come to really respect Oppenheimer’s judgment. Working w/fewer top picks, I hope he & his scouting department flat out run the table & they have a historically great draft.

  • Stryker

    the more i think about it, with the lack of a first rounder and teams taking talent regardless of money more and more (especially with tampa and boston having myriad picks) i expect that none of these guys we’re hoping for fall to the yankees.

    • Tom

      Yup, I think the days of just a few teams willing to go significantly overslot are over as hitting on just 1 out of every 4 or 5 ends up being a bargain. Plus you have the potential of a hard cap/slotting in the new CBA some some teams may be willing to spend a lot more than they typically budget in a given year.

      I expect there will be less folks dropping on signability concerns… The prospects themselves are under some pressure with the new CBA looming as if they pass for a year they may be re-entering the draft under a hard slotting system.

      One thing the Yankees could do is take a guy who dropped on injury conerns… but that is a better strategy when you have multiple sandwich picks and is a risky one when you only have a few early picks.

      I’d expect the Yankees to focus more on the international free agents as well… given the teams in their divisions with the # of picks they have (Toronto also has a ton of picks), they will need to compensate for the lack of picks with either a great draft or some international signees.

    • Tom

      Yup, I think the days of just a few teams willing to go significantly overslot are over as hitting on just 1 out of every 4 or 5 ends up being a bargain. Plus you have the potential of a hard cap/slotting in the new CBA some some teams may be willing to spend a lot more than they typically budget in a given year.

      I expect there will be less folks dropping on signability concerns… The prospects themselves are under some pressure with the new CBA looming as if they pass for a year they may be re-entering the draft under a hard slotting system.

      One thing the Yankees could do is take a guy who dropped on injury concerns… but that is a better strategy when you have multiple sandwich picks and is a risky one when you only have a few early picks.

      I’d expect the Yankees to focus more on the international free agents as well… given the teams in their divisions with the # of picks they have (Toronto also has a ton of picks), they will need to compensate for the lack of picks with either a great draft or some international signees.

    • Tom

      sorry for the double post…

    • Ted Nelson

      Is it really going to change dramatically from last year, though? The uncertainty over the CBA might make a difference, but the greater depth in this year’s draft will also make a difference. There will be talent on the board at #51.

      Tampa is interesting. They can take some guys with no intention of signing them to push their picks and talent to next year’s draft, but they could also take a bunch of guys who are easy signs.

  • really old catcher

    Great info on Howard, with one exception. He was 9-1 with .036 ERA and 2 k’s per inning. He was on a team that made 4 errors per game and every ball on the infield was an adventure. I would not call his sr. year off the charts…only bc they didn’t win it all, but Dillon certainly had a good year.