Teams had all morning to re-size their boards, see who was available and contact players and their advisers about what it would take to sign. Now we’re going to see some interesting picks.
The round is flying by, some quick thoughts:
• The A’s take Max Stassi, top talent left on our board; will he give them a NorCal discount?
• The Padres may have made noise about disagreeing with BA ranking their system 29th out of 30 in our Prospect Handbook, but we did so due to a lack of high ceiling athletes. Suddenly the Padres are drafting nothing but athletes in the ’09 draft. Yesterday it was Donavan Tate and Everett Williams as prep outfielders with five-tool potential. Today it’s hard-throwing righthander Keyvius Sampson, whose signability was tough to gauge because he didn’t have an adviser, instead having his adopted father handle negotiations.
• The Royals pop Chris Dwyer; JJ Cooper has more on that one.
• The Mariners get an athletic two-way talent in James Jones of Long Island. Jones is a long-toss monster with huge arm strength, but some scouts had him in more as an outfielder, as he just didn’t perform in college. How bad were the numbers? How about 1-9, 7.40 this year, with a .326 opponents batting average?
• The Cardinals took injured Ole Miss righthander Scott Bittle, who has a tear (or strain) in his right shoulder capsule, depending on who you talk to. When healthy, though, Bittle is ridiculously good, with a premium mid-80s cutter.
• Two good college senior values in the fourth: Kent Matthes, Alabama outfielder who led the nation with 28 homers this spring, to the Rockies, who continue their fine draft; and North Carolina righthander Adam Warren to the Yankees. Warren pumps his fastball up to 93 mph regularly, sits average with it and his slider and has solid-average command of both pitches.
• Injured Georgia prep catcher Luke Bailey, thought to be in the Braves mix, goes instead to the Rays in the fourth round. Bailey was thought to be a first-round talent before he had Tommy John surgery this spring.
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