The World Series champion Red Sox will forfeit their first-, second- and third-round draft picks in June for signing free agents Matt Clement, Edgar Renteria and David Wells this offseason, but they’ll still be the most active team in the early rounds.
Boston will have six of the first 59 picks, getting two picks apiece for losing Type A free agents Orlando Cabrera to the Angels, Derek Lowe to the Dodgers and Pedro Martinez to the Mets. The Cardinals and Marlins will also make six selections before the start of the third round. The Giants, meanwhile, won’t make their first selection until the fourth round (134th overall).
Teams will pick in descending order of 2004 record—without regard to league for the first time in draft history. In the past, selections alternated from one league to the other. By virtue of their .315 winning percentage, the Diamondbacks will pick first.
The order in the second half of the first round (picks 16-30) has been set as all Type A and B free agents who were offered salary arbitration have been signed. Compensation is offered to teams losing free agents in the form of draft picks.
Following is the order for this year’s first round, with compensation for free agents lost noted. The draft is scheduled for June 7-8.
a Choice from Phillies for Type B free agent Jon Lieber
b Choice from Giants for Type A free agent Armando Benitez
c Choice from Angels for Type A free agent Orlando Cabrera
d Choice from Dodgers for Type A free agent Derek Lowe
e Choice from Red Sox for Type A free agent Edgar Renteria
f Choice from Yankees for Type A free agent Carl Pavano
PROJECTED FIRST ROUND
Justin Upton, ss/of, Great Bridge HS, Chesapeake, Va.
Hyped as a future first-rounder since he was 13, he may be more talented than older brother B.J.
He can hit and he’s one of the few players who is equally proficient behind plate, in middle infield
Henry Sanchez, 1b, Mission Bay HS, San Diego
A monster at 6-foot-3 and 260 pounds, he can literally dent outfield walls, hit baseballs out of sight
Cliff Pennington, ss, Texas A&M U.
A slick-fielding shortstop with a plus arm, he emerged as a first-round talent last summer on Cape Cod
David Adams, 3b, Grandview Prep, Boca Raton, Fla.
He’s not overly athletic and doesn’t run that well, but few players can swing the bat with more authority
—Compiled by Allan Simpson
2006 SNEAK PEEK
Baseball America draft expert Allan Simpson takes a sneak peek at next year’s college and high school draft classes:
COLLEGE 1. Andrew Miller, lhp, North Carolina
2. Drew Stubbs, of, Texas
3. Daniel Bard, rhp, North Carolina
4. Dallas Buck, rhp, Oregon State
5. Ian Kennedy, rhp, Southern California
6. Jason Donald, ss, Arizona
7. Wade LeBlanc, lhp, Alabama
8. Blair Erickson, rhp, UC Irvine
9. Josh Morris, 1b, Georgia
10. Richie Lentz, rhp, Washington
11. Keith Weiser, lhp, Miami (Ohio)
12. Matt Antonelli, 3b, Wake Forest
HIGH SCHOOL 1. Kyle Drabek, rhp/ss, The Woodlands (Texas) HS
2. Kasey Kiker, lhp, Russell County HS, Seale, Ala.
3. Gavin Brooks, lhp, Rancho Buena Vista HS, Vista, Calif.
4. Chris Marrero, ss, Monsignor Pace HS, Opa Locka, Fla.
5. Chris Tillman, rhp, Fountain Valley (Calif.) HS
6. Aaron Miller, lhp, Channelview (Texas) HS
7. Nicholas Akins, ss, Los Angeles HS
8. Tony Delmonico, ss, Farragut HS, Knoxville
9. Jared Mitchell, of, Westgate HS, New Iberia, La.
10. Hank Conger, c/1b, Huntington Beach (Calif.) HS
11. Cory Rasmus, lhp, Russell County HS, Seale, Ala.
12. Brent Brewer, ss, Sandy Creek HS, Fairburn, Ga.
AND YOU THOUGHT HE ONLY CONTROLLED THE FREE AGENT MARKET
While it remains a possibility that Florida State shortstop Stephen Drew and Long Beach State righthander Jered Weaver will remain unsigned and re-enter this year’s draft, they would officially qualify among the 10 longest holdouts in draft history if they do sign. With the recent signings of former Rice teammates Philip Humber and Jeff Niemann, the third and fourth picks overall last June, Drew (Diamondbacks) and Weaver (Angels) are the remaining first-round picks from the 2004 draft not to sign who can. Orioles’ first-rounder Wade Townsend returned to class and is ineligible to sign.
The following is a list of the 10 longest holdouts in draft history (top four rounds only) and the date they finally signed. It is worth noting that agent Scott Boras represented the five longest holdouts.
Player, Club (Round)
Jason Varitek, Mariners (1)
April 20, 1995
Steven White, Yankees (4)
April 7, 2004
Bobby Brownlie, Cubs (1)
March 5, 2003
Trevor Hutchinson, Marlins (3)
Feb. 24, 2003
Jeff Austin, Royals (1)
Feb. 20, 1999
Jeff Niemann, Devil Rays (1)
Jan. 20, 2005
Philip Humber, Mets (1)
Jan. 11, 2005
Kip Wells, White Sox (1)
Dec. 23, 1998
Matt Anderson, Tigers (1)
Dec. 23, 1997
Mark Schramek, Reds (1)
Dec. 18, 2002
TOP 25 JUCOS
Here’s how Baseball America’s Allan Simpson sees the nation’s top 25 junior college prospects for the 2005 draft. For players that were drafted in 2004 and remain under control, the team that drafted them (and the round) is noted. Such players will be eligible to sign after their 2005 season is complete until the closed period—a week before the draft. They will re-enter this year’s draft if they don’t sign.
Stephen Marek, rhp San Jacinto (Texas)
Omar Aguilar, rhp Merced (Calif.)
Bryant Beaver, ss/rhp Seminole State (Okla.)
Bobby Mosebach, rhp/of Hillsborough (Fla.)
Eric Krebs, rhp Alvin (Texas)
David Hernandez, rhp Cosumnes River (Calif.)
Jesse Litsch, rhp South Florida
Blue Jays (24)
Shawn Olsen, rhp Southern Nevada
Clay Buchholz, of/rhp Angelina (Texas)
Kenny Maiques, rhp Rio Hondo (Calif.)
*Brad Clapp, rhp Bellevue (Wash.)
Deunte Heath, rhp Lake City (Fla.)
Devil Rays (25)
*Steve Marquardt, ss/rhp Columbia Basin (Wash.)