John Manuel

2005 Draft Scouting Reports: North Carolina

John Manuel -Premium Content

Cameron Maybin made a run at giving North Carolina its third-ever No. 1 overall draft pick from its high school ranks. He's not likely to make that happen, but he figures to go in the first 10 picks. Perhaps it's best that he avoid the No. 1 tag, which didn't seem to help Brien Taylor (1991) or Josh Hamilton (1999). Scouts say that while Maybin and Hamilton are different, Hamilton's bat was more ready for pro ball than Maybin's. Maybin should be the only prep player from the state drafted in the first 10 rounds, if not the first day. The state's colleges aren't fertile this year, either, and figure to be much stronger next year.

Draft | #2005#Draft Preview

2005 Draft Scouting Reports: Mississippi

John Manuel -Premium Content

Crosscheckers and scouting directors have checked out Mississippi more than usual this year, and the state could provide a pair of first-round picks in Ole Miss first baseman/lefthander Stephen Head and a righthander from Head's alma mater, Hillcrest Christian's Cody Satterwhite. Just as importantly, Ole Miss offered scouts several other reasons to make repeat visits to the state and could have three players drafted in the first five rounds.

Draft | #2005#Draft Preview

World Baseball Classic Notebook

John Manuel -

Top 10 World Baseball Classic Prospects. Though just two ended up playing for the title, it was the inclusion of big leaguers that made the World Baseball Classic such an enormous event. However, like international baseball events of the past, prospects still got a chance to shine. Three prospects who raised their profile as much as anyone at the Classic were Italy's Tony Giarratano, Australia's Brad Harman and Taiwan's Chin-Lung Hu.

International | #2006#International Affairs#World Baseball Classic

2005 Draft Scouting Reports: Georgia

John Manuel -Premium Content

Typically a major factor toward the top of the draft, Georgia figures to be less prominent this time around, as most of the high-profile players in the territory regressed or merely held their place, rather than improving significantly in the spring. Pitchers particularly struggled this spring in Georgia, from college talents such as Jason Neighborgall and Will Startup to preps like Miers Quigley and Buster Posey.

Draft | #2005#Draft Preview

2005 Draft Scouting Reports: Alabama

John Manuel -Premium Content

It should be one of Alabama's biggest contributions in the draft in years, as the state offers several solid college players and a good crop of high school pitchers. Most significantly, Russell County High product Colby Rasmus could be the state's first prep player drafted in the first round since Terrence Long went 20th overall to the Mets in 1994. Colby's brother Cory and teammate Kasey Kiker, a lefthander likely to be a first-round pick next year, will make Alabama a must-visit state in 2006 as well.

Draft | #2005#Draft Preview

USA Sends Underwhelming Team To World Cup

John Manuel -

Baseball has had a World Cup tournament since 1938. Apparently, that history matters most to the Mets and Davey Johnson. Johnson, the longtime big league manager, will skipper Team USA at the World Cup that begins Friday in the Netherlands. His roster of minor leaguers—mostly from affiliated ball but with two independent leaguers—has precious little premium talent, aside from a pair of Mets.

International | #2005#International Affairs#World Cup