Why are all the good announcing teams working radio in the playoffs? I'll take Dan Shulman and Dave Campbell, or Jon Sciambi and Buck Martinez, or Ted Robinson and Steve Stone any day.
- Will the Cubs, who had the worst record in the National League, get the first pick in next June's amateur draft, or will someone else?
The leagues used to alternate picks in the draft, with the American League taking the No. 1 choice in even-numbered years and the National League going first in odd-numbered years. But starting in 2005, Major League Baseball changed the rules so that teams draft in reverse order of their previous season's finish, regardless of their league affiliation. If multiple clubs have the same record, they draft in reverse order of their records from two years earlier.
Below is the draft order for 2007. Remember, the first 15 picks are protected from free-agent compensation, but anything after that could change hands. There's talk that free-agent compensation will end as part of the new Collective Bargaining Agreement, but nothing is definite at this point.
|2007 Draft Order|
|1. Devil Rays (61-101)||11. Mariners (78-84)||21. Blue Jays (87-75)|
|2. Royals (62-100)||12. Marlins (78-84)||22. Dodgers (88-74)|
|3. Cubs (66-96)||13. Indians (78-84)||23. Padres (88-74)|
|4. Pirates (67-95)||14. Braves (79-83)||24. Angels (89-73)|
|5. Orioles (70-92)||15. Reds (80-82)||25. White Sox (90-72)|
|6. Nationals (71-91)||16. Rangers (80-82)||26. Athletics (93-69)|
|7. Brewers (75-87)||17. Astros (82-80)||27. Tigers (95-67)|
|8. Rockies (76-86)||18. Cardinals (83-78)||28. Twins (96-66)|
|9. Diamondbacks (76-86)||19. Phillies (85-77)||29. Mets (97-65)|
|10. Giants (76-85)||20. Red Sox (86-76)||30. Yankees (97-65)|
- How close was Travis Wood to making the Midwest League Top 20 Prospects list? I was surprised Jaime Garcia was rated well ahead of him.
If we went 30 deep, Wood would have made the list. That's not to say he isn't a promising prospect, because he does have one of the best arms in the Reds system. It's also partly a factor of the Midwest League having 14 teams, making competition for the Top 20 fierce.
A second-round pick out of an Arkansas high school in 2005, Wood went 10-5, 3.66 in 27 starts at low Class A Dayton this year. He had a 133-56 K-BB ratio in 140 innings while limiting opponents to a .215 average and 14 homers. Wood had the best changeup in the MWL, though his fastball sat at 87-91 mph after he showed a consistent low-90s heater in high school. His curveball was a mediocre pitch, so he still has some work ahead of him.
I'm not sure why Rob was surprised that Garcia checked in at No. 7. They're roughly the same age and put up similar numbers in the MWL, but Garcia moved on to high Class A and did well there. Most of all, Garcia has significantly better stuff with his 91-94 mph fastball, plus curveball and solid changeup.
- The Dodgers drafted Canadian high school slugger Kyle Orr as their fourth-round pick. What are their chances of signing him?
Orr officially signed on Monday for $435,000, about 50 percent over MLB's recommendation for the 113th overall slot in the draft. At 6-foot-5 and 205 pounds, Orr offers intriguing power and figures to wind up in right field or at first base. While he was holding out this summer, he helped Canada win the bronze medal at the World Junior Championships. He would have played collegiately at Kentucky had he not turned pro.
What's curious is that Orr was one of several players, including Yankees first-rounder Ian Kennedy, who reportedly reached above-slot agreements with their clubs weeks before their deals were officially announced. The Dodgers denied that Orr's deal was done well in advance, but multiple sources indicated that he agreed to terms in July.