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Cubs 2002 Draft Overview

By Jim Callis
May 17, 2002

Scouting Director: John Stockstill (first year: 2001).

2000 Draft (First three rounds, picking third)
1. Luis Montanez, ss, Coral Park HS, Miami.
2. Bobby Hill, ss, Newark (Atlantic League).
3a. Aaron Krawiec, lhp, Villanova.
3b. Nic Jackson, of, Richmond.

2001 Draft (First three rounds, picking second)
1. Mark Prior, rhp, Southern California.
2. Andy Sisco, lhp, Eastlake HS, Sammamish, Wash.
3. Ryan Theriot, ss, Louisiana State.

2002 Draft
Cubs pick 21st in rotation.

Overview
John Stockstill had quite a standard to live up to when he succeeded Jim Hendry as Cubs scouting director. Hendry, now Chicago's vice president of player personnel and general manager Andy MacPhail's heir apparent, presided over five drafts. His 1996-2000 efforts restocked a once-moribund farm system with players such as Corey Patterson, David Kelton, Bobby Hill and Nic Jackson.

Stockstill continued the trend in his first draft in charge. It helped that Chicago picked second and the Twins decided Mark Prior was going to be too expensive to take with the No. 1 overall choice. That allowed the Cubs to land arguably the best college pitching prospect ever. But Stockstill didn't stop there, landing 6-foot-10 lefthander Andy Sisco and slick-fielding shortstop Ryan Theriot with his next two selections. In later rounds, Chicago picked up more promising arms (Ricky Nolasco, Sergio Mitre) and infielders (Brendan Harris, Corey Slavik).

With the major league club and the farm system both in the best shape they've been in many years, the Cubs are in position to add to their talent. As compensation for the loss of free agents David Weathers, Rondell White and Todd Van Poppel, the Cubs will get three supplemental first-round picks as well as additional choices in the second, third and fourth rounds. So they will have the Nos. 21, 32, 36 and 38 picks through the supplemental first round, with 10 picks among the first 123.

Hendry and Stockstill both have shown an aptitude for mixing college and high school players, hitters and pitchers, never locking in on a particular demographic. Having so many extra picks this June may send the Cubs toward college seniors as a way to keep their total bonus budget in line. Then again, they guaranteed Prior a draft-record $10.5 million a year ago.

The lone weak spot in the system is catcher, which took another hit when stellar defender Ryan Jorgensen was sent to Florida in March in a trade that netted Matt Clement and Antonio Alfonseca. Chicago likely will include a catcher or two among its early picks. Georgia Tech's Tyler Parker and Iowa prepster Jeff Clement are two possibilities. If the Cubs opt for a cheaper college senior, Alabama's Jeremy Brown might be the best bet.

As for their first pick, it's hard to predict in such a fluid draft. The Cubs are one of three clubs bringing in Prince Fielder for a workout.

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