Archive for 2013 Draft
Today’s collection of draft-related links (draft round in parenthesis):
- Notre Dame 3B Eric Jagielo (1) indicated he is on his way to Tampa via his Twitter feed. That doesn’t mean a deal is imminent, however. He could just be heading down for his physical since teams like to get those out of the way early in case there’s a Ty Hensley situation or negotiations go down to the wire. Jagielo is slotted for just under $1.84M and will probably sign for something close to that, if not more.
- California HS LHP Ian Clarkin (1s) can’t take his physical until he graduates later this week. “We feel very strongly that we will get it done … We need to clean up a couple of things and for him to pass a physical,” said scouting director Damon Oppenheimer to George King. Clarkin is slotted for a touch more than $1.65M and I have to think he winds up with more than that. Maybe even $2M.
- California HS 2B Gosuke Katoh (2) told Michael Bower that if “everything works out like it should with no road bumps, then I should be a Yankee by next week.” He’s slotted for a little less than $846k and I think he winds up quite a bit with less than that.
- Howard JuCo RHP David Palladino (5) has agreed to terms and will officially sign his contract tomorrow, reports Mark Czerwinski. The 6-foot-9, 255-pounder out of New Jersey is slotted for a bit more than $278k.
- Grayson County JuCo SS Kevin Cornelius (31) has agreed to terms pending a physical, according to K. Levine-Flandrup. If the name sounds familiar, it’s because the Yankees drafted him out of a Texas HS in the 42nd round of the 2011 draft. Every pick after the tenth round is slotted for $100k.
Here are some updates on various draft picks who have signed or are close to signing (draft round in parenthesis):
- SS Tyler Wade (4) is traveling to Florida tomorrow, according to his Twitter feed. That’s a pretty good indication he’s close to signing. The California high schooler is slotted for a touch more than $371k.
- SS John Murphy (6) has signed according to his Twitter feed. He is already in Tampa working out with the rest of gang. Slot for the Sacred Heart senior is a bit over $208k, but it’s a safe bet he signed for less.
- RHP Cale Coshow (13) has reached an agreement and is heading to Tampa for his physical, reports K. Levine-Flandrup. The Oklahoma Christian product is one of the team’s most interesting late-rounders because he sits in the mid-90s as a starter and is enormous (listed at 6-foot-5 and 270 lbs.). No word on the money, but slot for every pick after the tenth round is $100k.
- OF Jordan Barnes (15) flew to Tampa today and will sign his contract soon, reports Kevin Maloney. I doubt the Northwest Mississippi Community College freshman signs for more than the $100k slot allowance.
- OF Derek Toadvine (22) “anticipates that he will sign” according to David Jablonski. Like Barnes, the Kent State junior is likely to get nothing more than the $100k slot.
- OF Cody Thomas (30) will not sign, reports Jason Kersey. The Oklahoma prepster is a legitimate football prospect, and he’ll follow through on his commitment to Oklahoma and play both sports for the Sooners. Not surprising, I’m guessing he would have had to have been drafted a whole lot higher to consider turning pro.
In case you missed it over the weekend, our 2013 Draft Pool page is up and running. It’s available via the Resources tab under the street sign in the banner. All of the team’s selections can be seen at Baseball America.
After three days and 1,216 total picks, the 2013 draft is over. The Yankees selected 42 players overall, including the final 30 on Saturday afternoon. As expected, most of those final 30 picks are fringy prospects and organizational types, though the Bombers also squeezed in a few long shot high-end high schoolers and nepotism picks. All of the team’s picks can be seen at Baseball America.
Go Big Or Go Home
It’s no secret the Yankees love physically huge players, specifically on the mound. They drafted 16 pitchers on Day Three, and those 16 guys average 6-foot-3 and 207 lbs. The 11 college pitchers average 6-foot-4 and 219 lbs. They weren’t messing around; size is the sixth tool for New York.
The biggest of the big is Oklahoma Christian RHP Cale Coshow (13th round), who is listed at 6-foot-5 and 270 lbs. on the school’s website. Obviously keeping his weigh in check has been an issue, but Coshow also sits in the mid-90s as a starter and will also throw a curveball and changeup. He spent two years at Oklahoma as a scarcely used spare pitcher before transferring to Oklahoma Christian, so his arm has very few miles on it. Coshow can start and offers sneaky good upside, but the Yankees are going to have to work hard with him on his conditioning.
San Diego State RHP Phil Walby (12), Sam Houston State LHP Caleb Smith (14), and UNLV RHP Andy Beresford (19) highlight the rest of the large pitcher crop. Walby (6-foot-3 and 215 lbs.) and Beresford (6-foot-6 and 200 lbs) are pure arm strength guys who run their fastballs into the mid-90s. Both lack secondary pitches and are destined for the bullpen, especially Walby given his violent and occasionally out-of-control delivery. The 6-foot-3 and 200 lb. Smith will sit in the low-90s with a very good changeup, but a stiff delivery and lack of a breaking ball make him a long-term reliever.
Say Hi To Your Father For Me
As you already know, the Yankees selected Texas HS LHP Josh Pettitte (37) yesterday. He was actually with his father Andy and the team in Seattle yesterday, telling reporters he fully intends to follow through on his commitment to Baylor even though it was an honor to be drafted by the Yankees. That’s no surprise, Josh stands to benefit from college (like his father once upon a time) and his selection was more of a thank you to his family than anything.
A few rounds earlier, the club selected Canada HS RHP Cal Quantrill (26), son of the former Yankee and long-time big leaguer Paul Quantrill. Cal is a legitimate top three rounds talent with a low-90s fastball and a knockout changeup in his four-pitch mix. He’s highly regarded for his pitching acumen and aggressiveness as well, but like Pettitte he will be heading to college in a few months. Quantrill is committed to Stanford — the Cardinal almost never lose a significant commit — and teams knew he was borderline unsignable heading into the draft, hence his availability on Day Three.
Power In The Corners
High school first basemen and left fielders are hardly a hot commodity on draft day, but the Yankees took bat over glove with Texas HS OF Kendall Coleman (11) and Missouri HS 1B Drew Bridges (20). Both guys are left-handed hitters with bat speed and above-average power, but their defensive issues are major turnoffs. Bridges will get a shot to stick at the hot corner if he signs, but that’s pretty much doomed to fail. New York picked the bats here, not the gloves. Both guys can hit and not much else.
In addition to Quantrill and Pettitte, the Yankees also selected Kansas HS LHP Jordan Floyd (25), Texas HS OF Cody Thomas (30), and Florida HS LHP Nestor Cortes (36). Thomas is a big time football prospect and will wind up at Oklahoma, where he will play both sports. Cortes is an undersized three-pitch lefty with low-90s heat and strong offspeed pitches, but he’ll be with Florida International next spring. Floyd is very raw after splitting time between baseball and football in high school. He’s committed to Kansas State.
These three aren’t high-end prep prospects like Quantrill, but they all have strong college commitments and are unlikely to turn pro given the team’s draft pool situation and their draft slots. They were backup plans, basically. If there happens to be some extra draft pool money lying around and one of three changes their mind about going to school, hey it might work out. Otherwise Floyd, Thomas, and Cortes are prospects for show.
Every year, every team stocks up on good college players who don’t profile well in pro ball to fill out minor league rosters around the actual prospects. Adelphi RHP Dillon McNamara (27), Fresno State C Trent Garrison (28), Hawaii Pacific 3B Chaunsey Sumner (32), Washington State SS Ty Afenir (39), and Appalachian State RHP Sam Agnew-Wieland (24) and 2B Hector Crespo (34) all fit the minor league roster depth bill. Garrison is the twin brother of RHP Taylor Garrison, who has become one of the New York’s better bullpen prospects since being drafted last year.
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As usual, the Yankees snuck in a few interesting players around the Day Three clutter on Saturday afternoon. Coshow and the other big pitchers really stand out from the pack of players who might actually sign (figuratively and literally!), ditto Coleman and Bridges. Obviously Pettitte and Quantrill are the headliners for their names as much as their unsignability. Regardless of what happened on Day Two and Day Three, those three first rounders are the focal point of this draft for the Yankees. That was going to be true no matter what thanks to the new system.
Welcome to Day Three, the last gasp of the 2013 draft. Rounds 11-40 will be chosen today, and none of those picks are directly tied to the draft pool. No pool money will be lost if these guys do not sign. Expect to see some/all of the last remaining high-end high school players chosen at some point this afternoon as super deep backup plans. None are expected to sign but it’s worth a shot.
The Yankees landed three true first round talents with their free first round picks on Day One, and Day Two brought a mix of interesting prospects and draft pool-saving selections. Day Three will be a smorgasbord — interesting prospects, nepotism picks, organization filler, pretty much the works. Here are some quick links before we proceed:
- Our 2013 Draft Order Tracker is now up and running. It’s available at all times under the Resources tab, right under the street sign in the banner. We’ll keep track of the Yankees’ draft pool situation between now and signing deadline there, so check back often.
- In other draft pool news, scouting director Damon Oppenheimer told K. Levine-Flandrup he does not expect to have any trouble signing the team’s Day One selections. Sandwich rounder LHP Ian Clarkin told reporters he wants “life-changing money” to turn pro, and I’m guessing he’ll find something a bit over the $1.65M slot value to be pretty damn life-changing.
- “The Yankees nailed their first three picks,” wrote Keith Law in his AL breakdown (subs. req’d). He also notes they took some interesting bullpen options on Day Two and Clarkin “was inconsistent this spring in command, but his velocity was strong at year end and he would have gone in the teens had he performed better.”
- Here are the best remaining players heading into Day Three, according to Baseball America. The first seven are essentially unsignable high schoolers.
The draft resumes this afternoon at 1pm ET with a rapid fire conference call that will be broadcast on MLB.com. You can also follow all the picks live with the Draft Tracker. There won’t be a liveblog today, so use this thread to talk about any and all picks.
Thanks to the new Collective Bargaining Agreement, Day Two is the least exciting day of the draft. It covers rounds three through ten, and like many teams, the Yankees use those rounds to stock up on college seniors — who have no leverage and sign for far-below-slot bonuses — to save draft pool money. The savings then go towards over-slot bonuses in the really early and really late rounds. It’s one of the few ways to game the system.
That is precisely the strategy the Yankees employed on Friday, at least to a certain extent — three of their eight Day Two selections were college seniors. Their Day Two haul started with a very familiar surname.
More Than Bloodlines
Three years ago, the Yankees selected OF Mike O’Neill out of an Ohio high school in the 42nd round. He didn’t sign and instead followed through on his commitment to Michigan. Yesterday afternoon, they drafted him again with their third round pick.
O’Neill, of course, is the nephew of former Yankee Paul O’Neill. He is much more than a nepotism pick though, in fact he was expected to come off the board late in the second round. The Yankees nabbed him in the third following a strong year with the Wolverines. “Michael is an athletic outfielder with some hand and wrist strength at the plate … (he’s) a plus runner with a fringy arm who at least should get a year or so in center in the minors to see if he can be an above-average defender or better there,” wrote Keith Law (subs. req’d).
Uncle O’Neill and nephew O’Neill have very different styles of play despite a similar hard-on-themselves attitude. Michael’s plate discipline is a big concern — 106/33 K/BB in 148 college games — and if he can’t play center he’ll be a ‘tweener without enough power for a corner. Then again, we are talking about a third round pick here. There are going to be warts. While the bloodlines grab the most attention, O’Neill can hit and run a bit. He wasn’t drafted as a favor.
The Pirates drafted OF Brandon Thomas in the fourth round last year, but he returned to Georgia Tech for his senior season. Rather than improve his stock, he missed a whole bunch of time with mono and was very rarely at 100% for the Yellow Jackets. The Yankees nabbed him in the eighth round yesterday.
When healthy, Thomas has a contact-oriented line drive swing with enough pop to hit mistakes out of the park. He also runs well and is a capable center field defender. Thomas was considered the second best college senior in the draft class behind only first overall pick Mark Appel when the spring opened, but teams never really got to see him at full strength. New York pounced late on Day Two and walked away with a cheap college senior who is way more than the typical draft pool-saving pick.
Size & Stuff
Supplemental first rounder Aaron Judge is listed at 6-foot-7, but he is only the second tallest player the Yankees have draft this year. Howard College RHP David Palladino (5th round) is listed at 6-foot-9 and 230 lbs., and the four-pitch pitcher uses his size to pitch downhill with a low-90s fastball. His command is fine and he has enough pitches to start.
With their final pick of Day Two, the Yankees nabbed South Carolina LHP Tyler Webb (10) and his 6-foot-6, 225 lb. frame. He had Tommy John surgery in high school but spent four years as a workhorse reliever for the Gamecocks. Webb will sit in the low-90s with his fastball and throw three offspeed pitches, and he draws rave reviews his bulldog mentality and incredibly aggressive approach. It’s a lefty specialist profile at best, but like Palladino he offers both size and decent stuff as a later round selection.
It’s no secret the Yankees have an affinity for physically large players, but they grabbed the wiry high school 2B Gosuke Katoh in the second round and doubled up with California HS SS Tyler Wade (4) on Day Two. He’s listed at 6-foot-2 and 170 lbs. with a game that fits the frame: speed, contact, and defense. Wade is a pro-level defender and a rare lefty hitting shortstop, but he has zero present power. It’s unclear if he’ll ever grow into any either. Legit shortstops are hard to find though, and the Yankees found one in the fourth round.
Aside from anything thrown by supplemental first rounder LHP Ian Clarkin, the best individual pitch the Yankees have drafted so far this year belongs to LSU RHP Nick Rumbelow (7). His hard curveball is a true swing-and-miss pitch, which is a pretty great starting point for a short reliever. Rumbelow’s low-90s fastball is pretty straight and his rough delivery makes some think he’ll spend a decent amount of time on the DL, but digging up a true out-pitch more than 220 picks into the draft is not easy to accomplish.
Impacting The Draft Pool
Sacred Heart SS John Murphy (6) and Auburn LHP Kendrick Conner (9) are the fringiest of fringe prospects who were likely selected as part of the team’s draft pool-saving strategy more than anything. Murphy, a senior, has a good swing but is a utility man at best according to Nathan Rode. Conner, a junior, is a finesse college swing-man and the kind of arm New York can bounce around from role to role and level to level to fill any roster holes for a year or three. Neither will have much on-field impact, but they serve a purpose by allowing the team to manipulate its league-regulated budget.
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The current draft setup doesn’t really enable a team picking late in each round to land impact talent in the middle rounds — even though the Yankees had extra picks and draft pool money this year, it’s not a huge amount they can legitimately spread around — so the Bombers can only do so much on Day Two of the draft. They got two nice players in O’Neill and Thomas and two interesting prospects in Wade and Rumbelow, but otherwise their Day Two selections were gearing towards optimizing the draft pool.
Day One and the first 73 picks of the 2013 draft came and went last night, with the Yankees selecting four total players and three legitimate first round talents. There are still another 38 rounds and roughly 1,150 picks to go however, and thankfully none of them will come with the pomp and circumstance of last night’s MLB Network broadcast. The MLB draft just isn’t a made-for-television event, though I understand the league’s effort to increase popularity and all that. It all boils down to money and marketing, as usual.
Before we get into the nuts and bolts of Day Two, here are some draft-related links to peruse:
- Here are Baseball America’s top remaining players. The top three — Oklahoma HS C Jon Denney, Virginia HS RHP Connor Jones, Tennessee HS RHP Kyle Serrano — are all considered very tough signs. Serrano pretty much confirmed he will go to college on Twitter, and Jones reportedly sent a memo to teams telling them not to draft him recently.
- Meanwhile, Baseball America says the Yankees’ top three selections — Notre Dame 3B Eric Jagielo (#26), Fresno State OF Aaron Judge (#32), and California HS LHP Ian Clarkin (#33) — would all slot into the middle of their top ten prospects list. Of course, their top ten is different than my top ten. They also call Judge “a great get” at his draft slot and note Clarkin “could have gone as high as the 13th pick.”
- The Yankees didn’t make an appearance in Keith Law’s post of the winners and losers from Day One (subs. req’d), though he did give me a “yay” when I asked if he liked the team’s top three selections. Law lists his best available players at the bottom of the post.
- In the pick-by-pick analysis (subs. req’d), Jason Churchill and Christopher Crawford say Jagielo could be “in pinstripes sometime in 2014, early 2015 … The Yankees get some upside [with Clarkin], and with both Jagielo and Judge have had themselves a solid first round.”
- Scouting director Damon Oppenheimer spoke to Buster Olney about the team’s Day One draft on today’s Baseball Tonight podcast. He doesn’t say anything too exciting as you’d imagine, but he does discuss the Jagielo and Judge picks. Oppenheimer’s segment starts are the 16:00 mark.
The draft continues today at 12:30pm ET with rounds three through ten. This will probably be the most boring of the three draft days since the Yankees are likely to go heavy on cheap and draft pool-saving college seniors this afternoon, which is what they did last year. That will allow them to pay over-slot bonuses to early and late-round picks. Unfortunately, college seniors aren’t exactly exciting prospects.
The Yankees were the only team in baseball with three first round picks this year thanks to the free agent defections of Nick Swisher and Rafael Soriano, and those three picks made this the team’s most important draft in several years. They needed to add some serious talent to the system — their first round track record has been pretty awful for nearly two decades now — and they did that on Day One last night.
Strong & Polished
For the first time since taking Andrew Brackman with the 30th overall pick in 2007, the Yankees selected a college player with their top pick on Thursday. Notre Dame 3B Eric Jagielo got the call with the 26th overall pick, giving the Yankees one of the most polished hitters in the draft class. It wasn’t until this spring that he addressed his two biggest weaknesses, specifically plate discipline and defense. He made major strides in both areas.
“Jagielo loads his hands very high and deep, creating a longer path to the ball, compensating with strong hands and forearms that allow him to make solid contact even when he has to fully extend his arms to cover the pitch low and away,” wrote Keith Law (subs. req’d). “He’s quick enough to keep his hands inside the ball and doesn’t project to have trouble with better velocity … he’s an adequate defender at third with arm strength, agile enough to stay at the position even though he’s going to be among the bigger third basemen in pro ball.”
The Yankees didn’t shoot for the moon with pure upside with their top pick, instead opting to snag a well-rounded player at a hard-to-fill position with Jagielo. He was among the very best college hitters available — arguably the best college left-handed hitter — and his offensive polish means there isn’t much tinkering to be done. They can just turn him loose in the minors and watch him climb the ladder. Nice and easy.
Judge, Jury & Executioner
The Yankees hadn’t drafted a legitimate first round college bat in a long time, probably not since John-Ford Griffin in 2001, but they landed two last night. They selected Fresno State OF Aaron Judge with the 32nd overall pick and he’s a physical freak, offering both power and speed despite packing 255 lbs. on his 6-foot-7 frame. Players that big aren’t supposed to run well and be able to play center field in addition to driving he ball out of the park.
“Like a lot of taller hitters who set up high, he prefers the ball up in the zone, and the huge raw power he shows in BP doesn’t always appear in games because he doesn’t get under the ball enough to drive it out,” wrote Law (subs. req’d) “Judge won’t play center in pro ball but is an average runner who should have above-average range in either corner, with a plus arm to handle right, along the lines of Jason Heyward’s defensive profile … He has 30-homer potential for a team willing to overlook what might be 150 strikeouts a year.”
Judge is much more risky than the more polished Jagielo, but he offers more upside and wow potential. A 6-foot-7 outfielder crushing bombs and running down everything in the outfield just isn’t something you see everyday, so we’re talking about a very unique profile here. Outside of Brackman, I’m not sure scouting director Damon Oppenheimer has drafted a more fascinating player in all his years at the helm.
From The Left
Considering that their history is littered with high-end left-handed starters, the Yankees have had an alarmingly short supply of even decent southpaw prospects in recent years. Manny Banuelos, Nik Turley, and … that’s pretty much it since Sean Henn. The last time they took a lefty in the first round was 1996, when they landed Eric Milton.
With their third first round pick (33rd overall), New York addressed that organizational hole by grabbing California HS LHP Ian Clarkin. Hilariously enough, Clarkin declared his hatred for the Yankees — “I cannot stand the Yankees, I was so happy [when they lost the 2001 World Series] — in a pre-recorded video MLB Network aired after the selection was made. Don’t worry, money has a way of changing allegiances.
Anyway, more important than handedness is talent. Law (subs. req’d) said Clarkin is a “a good-sized lefty who throws hard and can spin a breaking ball” while noting the “raw material is very strong.” There is still plenty of work to be done on his delivery, command, and changeup, but that’s typical for a high school arm. This draft was very, very light on prep pitchers, and there’s a strong case to be made Clarkin was the third best available behind Kohl Stewart (#4 to Twins) and Trey Ball (#7 to Red Sox).
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The Yankees went off the board a bit with their second round selection, taking California HS 2B Gosuke Katoh with the 66th overall pick. He’s a very good defender but a strong arm short of being a shortstop, and offensively he’s a speedy slap-hitter who needs to fill out his wiry frame to avoid having the bat knocked out of hands by good fastballs. The two sides may have cut a pre-draft deal to save some draft pool money, but who knows. The team does have a reputation for oddball picks, of course.
“We think we had a great first day,“ said Oppenheimer in a statement following the first day of picks, stating the obvious. “I’m excited and the staff is excited. We feel really good about what happened for us today.”
They Yankees had three first round picks and they actually chose three first round talents on Thursday, which was a very welcome change of pace from recent years. They used him to add a nice balance of polish and upside to the system, and they need to turn those selections into quality prospects sooner rather than later. I don’t know if Jagielo, Judge, and Clarkin represent the most realistic best-case scenario for those top three picks, but they definitely weren’t far off. No, not at all.
With their back-to-back supplemental first round picks (32nd and 33rd overall), the Yankees selected Fresno State OF Aaron Judge and California HS LHP Ian Clarkin, respectively. Click the links for my write-up of each player. These were the compensation picks for Nick Swisher and Rafael Soriano leaving as free agents.
With their first pick in this year’s draft (#26 overall), the Yankees selected Notre Dame 3B Eric Jagielo. Here’s my write-up on him. Earlier today we heard New York was seeking a college bat with their top pick, and that’s exactly what they got.
The 2013 draft is upon us. The three-day event begins tonight with 73 picks covering the First Round, Supplemental First Round, Competitive Balance Round A, Second Round, and Competitive Balance Round B. MLB Network and MLB.com will broadcast those picks beginning at 7pm ET. The Yankees, who will make more picks than any other team this evening, should be making their first selection around 9:10-ish with two more 15 or so minutes later. Here are their selections for tonight:
- First Round: #26 overall ($1,839,400 slot)
- Supplemental First Round: #32 overall for losing Nick Swisher ($1,677,100 slot)
- Supplemental First Round: #33 overall for losing Rafael Soriano ($1,650,100 slot)
- Second Round: #66 overall ($845,700 slot)
Rumor has it the Yankees are looking to take a college player with that #26 pick, but who really knows. That’s the fun part. The entire draft order can be found here and our 2013 draft archive right here. MLB.com’s Draft Tracker is right here. The liveblog is below. Join in.