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2005 Draft Scouting Reports: Rocky Mountains
(Idaho, Montana, Wyoming)

By Allan Simpson
May 26, 2005


THIS YEAR'S CROP
***** One for the books
**** Banner year
*** Solid, not spectacular
** Not up to par
* Nothing to see here
Idaho has been on the travel itinerary of a lot of Pacific Northwest scouts this year who usually pay just passing interest. Not only has NAIA power Lewis-Clark State produced its usual assortment of mid- to late-round picks, but the Idaho prep ranks are also the deepest in years, with at least four legitimate draft picks. Montana has just one legitimate prospect, while Wyoming has no one who will be drafted.

(National ranking in parentheses)
Potential First-Round Picks
None
Potential Second-Fifth Round Picks
None
Others Of Note
1. Allen Langdon, of, Eagle HS, Garden City, Idaho
2. Kyle Wright, rhp, Lewis-Clark State U.
3. Carlos Fisher, rhp, Lewis-Clark State U.
4. Nick Carr, rhp, Twin Falls (Idaho) HS
5. Jordan Latham, rhp, Centennial HS, Boise
6. Joey Dyche, of, Lewis-Clark State U.
7. Troy Grundy, rhp, JC of Southern Idaho (CONTROL: Dodgers)
8. Joe Kent, lhp, Skyview HS, Billings, Mon.
9. Jon Gaston, of, Vallivue HS, Nampa, Idaho
10. Roger Evenson, rhp, Northwest Nazarene (Idaho) College

OTHERS TO WATCH
(Numbers in parentheses indicate rank in the Rocky Mountains)

OF Allen Langdon (1) established himself as the state’s top prospect with a strong showing at last summer’s Area Code Games. He reaffirmed his status by hitting .470 with seven homers this spring. At a thick 6-feet and 225 pounds with short arms and legs, Langdon is built along the lines of Padres outfielder Brian Giles. He has similar power potential from the left side, but his other tools grade out below-average. Landgon has been home-schooled but plays sports at nearby Eagle High. In addition to baseball, he was a middle linebacker on the football team. He has committed to Oregon State, but is considered the most likely to sign of all the Beavers recruits if he's drafted in the top 10-15 rounds, as expected.

RHP Nick Carr (4) is a pudgy country boy from central Idaho with a stiff, undeveloped approach to pitching, but he has the best arm speed in the state. He has been clocked up to 92-93 mph and still tries to throw the ball by hitters on every pitch. RHP Jordan Latham (5), an all-state football player, is a better all-around athlete than Carr, but he has a rougher delivery and his fastball peaks at only 89-90 mph.

OF Jared Gaston (9) is the most athletic and most complete player among Idaho’s elite prospects, but at 5-foot-11 and 165 pounds his ceiling is limited. He’ll need a year or two in college.

RHPs Kyle Wright (2) and Carlos Fisher (3) are the top starters on a Lewis-Clark State pitching staff that entered this year’s NAIA World Series with a 44-7 record and 2.37 ERA. The 6-foot-3, 170-pound Wright has an 88-91 mph fastball and an effective split-finger pitch that he throws nearly 50 percent of the time. Fisher, who was drafted by the Padres as an outfielder in 2001, has touched 93 with his fastball but his secondary stuff is questionable.

OF Joey Dyche (6), who found his way to Lewis-Clark State at age 22 after playing volleyball and basketball earlier in his college career, has been a big surprise, leading the team in batting (.503), homers (10) and RBIs (52). He runs well and has adapted to center field after moving from shortstop, but scouts aren’t sold on his inside-out, slashing approach to hitting.

With an 8-4, 1.82 record and 85 strikeouts in 74 innings, RHP Troy Grundy (7) was the top junior college prospect in Idaho this spring and one of the most effective pitchers in the Scenic West Conference, which has produced the last two Junior College World Series champions. But with an 86-89 mph fastball that marginally improved this season, he still hasn’t returned to the same velocity he had as a Utah high school sophomore, when he was clocked at 94 mph.

Montana’s best prospect is projectable 6-foot-4 LHP Joe Kent (8), an Oklahoma State signee who was clocked at 86-88 mph in the fall. He had just started playing American Legion ball in early May (Montana high schools don’t play baseball) and isn’t the kind of prospect likely to be seen by many scouts in the weeks leading up to the draft.

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