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Dodgers Draft Preview

By Josh Boyd
May 13, 2003

Scouting Director: Logan White (first draft: 2002)

2000 Draft (First five rounds, picking 17th)
1. Ben Diggins, rhp, Arizona
2. Joe Hanrahan, rhp, Norwalk (Iowa) Community HS
3. Jeff Tibbs, rhp, Davis HS, Farmington, Utah
4. Koyie Hill, c/3b, Wichita State
5. Heath Totten, rhp, Lamar

2001 Draft (First five rounds, picking 24th)
1. (Choice to Braves as compensation for free agent Andy Ashby)
2. Brian Pilkington, rhp, Santiago HS, Garden Grove, Calif.
3. David Taylor, rhp, Southlake HS, Clermont, Fla.
4. Kole Strayhorn, rhp, Shawnee HS, Seminole, Okla.
5. Steve Nelson, rhp, Cole Harbour District HS, Dartmouth, Nova Scotia

2002 Draft (First five rounds, picking 19th)
1a. James Loney, 1b, Elkins HS, Missouri City, Texas
1b. Greg Miller, lhp, Esperanza HS, Yorba Linda, Calif.
2a. Zach Hammes, rhp, Iowa City HS, Iowa City, Iowa
2b. Jonathan Broxton, rhp, Burke County HS, Waynesboro, Ga.
3. Mike Nixon, c, Sunnyslope HS, Phoenix
4. Delwyn Young, 2b, Santa Barbara (Calif.) CC
5. Mike Megrew, lhp, Chariho Regional HS, Hope Valley, R.I.

2003 Draft
Dodgers pick 24th in rotation.

Overview
What a way to start his reign as scouting director in Los Angeles. Logan White made the most surprising first-round selection by announcing James Loney as a first baseman--not as a lefthanded pitcher, the position the majority of scouts had turned him in as.

Of course it's too early to know for sure, but White had a potential impact draft tabbing high-ceiling high schoolers with his next four picks. The Dodgers passed on John Mayberry Jr., who was picked by the Mariners 28th overall but ended up at Stanford because of bonus demands in excess of $3 million, but were pleased when Loney stepped into the Rookie-level Pioneer League and hit .371-5-30 in 170 at-bats before an aggressive promotion to high Class A Vero Beach.

White's affinity for easy-throwing lefthanders was evident with the selection of Greg Miller, last year's poster boy for projectability. Miller was throwing in the low 80s early last spring. As the youngest player in the Florida State League this year, Miller has touched 94 mph.

The Dodgers would be one of the teams to benefit from a college-heavy first round. White and the Dodgers tend to favor athletes, live arms and projections, mostly from the high school ranks.

The strength of this draft is lefthanders, which could make for a perfect fit for the Dodgers with the 24th pick. Florida southpaw Andrew Miller is sliding down the board because of his inconsistent performances and raw delivery, but he would be hard to pass up for the Dodgers. Aside from the draft, though, Los Angeles could make another splash in the international market, as they have done the last two seasons with Venezuelan Jonahthan Figueroa and Dominican Joel Guzman.

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