Chicago Cubs

Players signed indicated in Bold

Round Overall Player Position School State Bonus
1 16 Hayden Simpson RHP Southern Arkansas Ark. $1,060,000
Southern Arkansas coach Allen Gum found the most successful pitcher in school history literally right next door. Simpson, his next-door neighbor in Magnolia, Ark., has gone 35-2, 2.39 with 323 strikeouts in 271 innings in three seasons with the NCAA Division II Muleriders. Though he's just 6 feet and 175 pounds, he has a strong lower half and a quick arm that delivers 91-93 mph fastballs that peak at 96. His fastball is fairly straight and he tends to pitch up in the zone, which could lead to difficulty with tougher competition. He has a pair of hard breaking pitches, an 82-83 mph slider and an 78-80 mph curve. He also has a changeup that he uses sparingly, and he commands his entire repertoire well. His velocity decreased a little toward the end of the season, and some scouts are wary of his size and the fact that he's never ventured far from Magnolia. Nevertheless, his fastball could get him drafted as high as the fourth or fifth round.
2 65 Reggie Golden OF Wetumpka (Ala.) HS Ala. $720,000
The top player in Alabama's high school ranks for the last two seasons, Golden is an Alabama recruit whose build and tools remind some evaluators of another Southeastern Conference player of recent vintage, current Brewers farmhand Kentrail Davis. He's a five-tool athlete with present strength who profiles as a right fielder, even though he stands less than 6 feet tall. Golden impressed scouts by grinding through the spring despite a hamstring pull that slowed him all season. He still ran average to above-average times despite his injury, but as he matures, speed won't be a major part of his game. Power will, as Golden has impressive strength and raw bat speed. His approach at the plate is raw, and he lacks the plate discipline that allowed Davis to star from the start of his SEC career. His best present tool is his above-average arm, which fits well in right field. He plays with energy and is coachable, and he'll have to adjust to better pitching with his raw hitting skills.
3 97 Micah Gibbs C Louisiana State La. $350,000
Gibbs has the best receiving skills among catchers in the 2010 draft, and those and his ability to handle a pitching staff earn repeated comparisons to Jason Varitek. He doesn't have a cannon behind the plate, but his arm strength is average and he enhances it with a quick release and good accuracy. However, he had thrown out just 14 percent of basestealers entering NCAA regional play, down from 32 percent in his first two seasons. His hitting has gone in the other direction, as he was batting .392, up from .306 the previous two years and .212 with wood bats in the Cape Cod League last summer. A 5-foot-11, 207-pound switch-hitter, Gibbs has spread out his stance, added more balance and simplified his swing. He has strength, but his swing can get loopy at times and he doesn't have an abundance of bat speed or power. He may not be more than a .260 hitter with 10-12 homers annually in the majors, but his defensive ability should make him a starter. The scarcity of catchers often enhances their draft status, so Gibbs could sneak into the first or sandwich round.
4 130 Hunter Ackerman LHP Louisburg (N.C.) JC N.C. $216,000
The top junior-college talent in the state, Ackerman could sneak into single-digit consideration thanks to an 88-90 mph fastball that he drives downhill. He has a solid low-80s changeup with tailing action that he can use to both sides of the plate, and a loopy, below-average breaking ball.
5 160 Matt Szczur OF Villanova Pa. $100,000
A wide receiver for Villanova's football team, Szczur led the Wildcats to a Football Championship Subdivision national title last fall, earning MVP honors in the championship game after racking up 270 all-purpose yards. He is a legitimate NFL draft prospect as a receiver in the Wes Welker mold, which clouds his baseball signability, but he also could be drafted as early as the fifth round in baseball. Szczur is an electrifying athlete with true 80 speed on the 20-80 scouting scale. He is still learning to put his speed to use in the outfield—he arrived at Villanova as a catcher and has never concentrated on baseball full-time—and has played right field for the Wildcats, but he could become an adequate defender in center or left with work. His arm is well-below-average. Offensively, the 5-foot-11, 190-pound Szczur has an unorthodox, slashy swing, but he has a knack for barreling up balls consistently, and he projects as an average hitter with below-average power. He has a patient approach, and he can use all fields and make adjustments from at-bat to at-bat. Scouts love Szczur's intensity on the field, and coaches rave about his work ethic and ability to learn. He also has special makeup off the field; days after hitting for the cycle on April 27, Szczur donated bone marrow to a 1-year-old girl with leukemia, sidelining him for the next three weeks.
6 190 Ivan DeJesus OF Cupeyville School, San Juan, P.R. P.R.
Center fielder DeJesus doesn't have one standout tool but can do a little bit of everything, with average tools across the board. He's a good athlete at 6 feet and 170 pounds and can play all three outfield spots. He's a gap hitter now, and he offers some projection as he gains strength. DeJesus is a hard worker who has committed to Alabama-Birmingham.
7 220 Ben Wells RHP Bryant (Ark.) HS Ark. $530,000
Ben Wells pitched at 84-87 mph most of his amateur career, but by the end of this spring he was throwing 90-94 mph and pitching a five-inning perfect game in the state 7-A championship game. The 6-foot-3, 200-pound righthander has a good feel for pitching, too, as he pounds the strike zone with a three-pitch mix that also includes a hard slider and splitter. He committed to Crowder (Mo.) JC and now is drawing attention from Southeastern Conference schools. Wells has the size and stuff to go in the first five rounds of the draft, though he may not have been scouted extensively enough to go that high.
8 250 Cam Greathouse LHP Gulf Coast (Fla.) CC Fla. $125,000
The lefthanded Greathouse generates a plus curveball that scrapes 80 mph from an exaggerated delivery that scares off some scouts. He also plays right field, and some scouts believe Greathouse's upper-80s fastball would improve in velocity if he gives up playing a position. He's a South Carolina recruit.
9 280 Kevin Rhoderick RHP Oregon State Ore. $110,000
Rhoderick entered the season as Baseball America's second-team Preseason All-America relief pitcher, as voted on by scouting directors. Rhoderick put up better numbers than last year, with a 2.93 ERA in 22 appearances covering 31 innings, but could not hold down the closer's job, compiling a career-low four saves. Some days he would pitch two or three innings of relief, while on others he would come in and pitch to one batter. Rhoderick sat in the 89-91 mph range most of the year, touching 93, though his fastball sometimes flattened out. His slider is an above-average pitch, and his changeup can get swings and misses even when it bounces three feet in front of the plate because it looks like his fastball coming out of his hand. On talent alone, Rhoderick could be a Top 200 player, but he's stubborn on the mound and has failed to make adjustments. He always tries to rear back and throw as hard as he can, disregarding finesse and attention to the running game.
10 310 Aaron Kurcz RHP JC of Southern Nevada Nev. $125,000
Righthander Kurcz came to Southern Nevada from Air Force. He's not big, standing 6 feet and 175 pounds, but has consistently pitched with good velocity. He sits 92-94 mph with a slurvy breaking ball that has some bite to it. If he doesn't sign, he'll head to Oral Roberts.
11 340 Eric Jokisch LHP Northwestern Ill. $125,000
After a slow start caused in part by a sore back, Jokisch regained the form that made him one of the top lefties in the Cape Cod League last summer, and he could pass Josh Mueller to become the first Illinois college pitcher drafted. A 6-foot-3, 180-pounder, Jokisch isn't overpowering but has good feel for a three-pitch mix. His changeup is his best offering and could become a true plus pitch, and he sets it up with a fastball that sits at 86-89 mph and a curveball that shows bite at times. He'll have to pitch inside more once he gets to pro ball.
12 370 Austin Reed RHP Rancho Cucamonga (Calif.) HS Calif. $150,000
Younger brother of San Diego State ace Addison Reed, Reed is a tall and physical righty who has battled mechanical and command issues all spring. Reed's fastball sits in the high 80s and can peak at 90-91. He's also committed to the Aztecs.
13 400 Pierre LePage 2B Connecticut Conn.
LePage is a high-energy grinder who plays above his tools. LePage's best asset is his ability to handle the bat and make consistent contact; he was the nation's toughest player to strike out this spring, with just two strikeouts through 205 at-bats in the regular season. LePage lacks power but has above-average speed and solid baserunning instincts, helping him swipe 26 bags in 30 attempts. He is an average defender at second base who makes all the routine plays.
14 430 Colin Richardson RHP Winter Haven (Fla.) HS Fla. $100,000
15 460 Elliot Soto SS Creighton Neb.
Elliott Soto is one of the best defensive shortstops in the draft, with plus range, hands and arm strength. He can make any throw from any angle, and he can make the routine plays as well as the spectacular. But scouts don't have much faith in his bat. The 5-foot-9, 155-pound Soto lacks strength and hit .194/.268/.218 with wood bats in the Cape Cod League last summer and .297/.388/.431 with metal this spring. He's an average runner, so almost all of his contributions are going to come on defense.
16 490 Ryan Hartman RHP Mount Zion (Ill.) HS Ill. $125,000
Hartman barely registered on the scouting radar before the season, and that didn't change when he came out throwing 87-88 mph at a showcase for Illinois and Indiana players in early February. He was rusty after playing basketball, however, and since Hartman got into baseball shape, he has made a push to go in the top 10 rounds. He has the best curveball in the state, a hard 76-78 mph bender, and he sat at 90-91 mph with his fastball throughout a highly anticipated matchup with Effingham High's Chad Green. Hartman's arm works well and he still has projection remaining in his 6-foot-3, 175-pound frame. He has committed to Eastern Illinois but no longer is a safe bet to make it to college.
17 520 Steven Brooks OF Wake Forest N.C.
18 550 Brooks Pinckard OF/RHP Baylor Texas
Pinckard is one of the faster runners available in the 2010 draft, with plus-plus speed that plays well in center field. However, he probably won't get a chance to use his wheels in pro ball. Scouts view him as a slap hitter and are much more intrigued by his strong right arm, which produces fastballs clocked up to 95 mph and loaded with sink. He's a work in progress on the mound, after redshirting in 2008 because he wasn't ready for Big 12 Conference baseball, then pitching just 49 innings while pulling two-way duty the last two seasons. He doesn't have a great feel for pitching yet, and his fastball isn't a strikeout pitch despite its velocity and life. His high-70s slider is inconsistent, and while his funky delivery adds deception, it also restricts his control and command. The 6-foot-1, 195-pounder is a quality athlete who could take off once he focuses on pitching—like another former Bears outfielder/pitcher, Aaron Miller, has since signing with the Dodgers as a sandwich pick last summer. Whether Pinckard will be signable if he goes around the fifth round as a draft-eligible sophomore remains to be seen. A stress fracture in his lower leg kept him out of the lineup for three weeks at midseason, but he was healthy again by the end of the regular season.
19 580 Dustin Fitzgerald RHP Hill (Texas) JC Texas $110,000
Righthander Dustin Fitzgerald's strong suits are his 6-foot-4, 225-pound frame and an 88-90 mph fastball that touches 92. He also has flashes a solid slider and a decent changeup, so he has a chance to make it as a starter. He'll attend Texas State in 2011 if he doesn't turn pro.
20 610 Ryan Cuneo 1B Delaware Del.
21 640 Cody Cox RHP Grassfield HS, Chesapeake, Va. Va.
Cox was gaining momentum as the draft approached. He was on follow lists going into the spring, but he wasn't a priority because he had pitched mostly in the mid-80s. Before his team was eliminated in the district playoffs, however, Cox was sitting 89-90 mph and touching 93 with his fastball thanks to a quick arm. His secondary stuff is all right and needs the refinements typical of a high school arm. Cox offers plenty of projection at a lanky 6-foot-5, 185 pounds, and he has a lot of moving parts in his delivery. He could go from rounds 6-10, but scouts didn't have a good read on what it would take to steer him away from his commitment to Old Dominion.
22 670 Jeff Vigurs C Bryant R.I.
Vigurs helped lead Bryant to the Northeast Conference title in its first year in the league. His defense stands out more than his questionable lefthanded bat, though he has a disciplined approach and uses all fields. Vigurs is a good receiver with a strong arm, quick release and good footwork.
23 700 Matt Loosen RHP Jacksonville Fla.
24 730 Dustin Geiger OF Merritt Island (Fla.) HS Fla. $150,000
25 760 Eric Rice RHP Palm Beach (Fla.) CC Fla.
26 790 Danny Muno SS Fresno State Calif.
Fresno State middle infielder Muno, the younger brother of San Diego infielder Kevin Muno, was the leadoff man and shortstop for the Bulldogs' surprise 2008 College World Series championship team as a freshman. Muno is a very good baseball player with athletic ability, the type of player who plays above his tools. Offensively he profiles best as a two-hole or even leadoff hitter with his good plate discipline and ability to steal some bags. The 5-foot-11, 180-pound Muno is a switch-hitter with well-below-average home run power, but he'll get his fair share of doubles and an occasional triple while profiling as an average hitter thanks to good plate discipline. At Fresno, he had a sterling 160-108 walk-strikeout ratio. Defensively, he is capable of playing either spot up the middle and will be at least an average defender. In some respects he compares with Orioles second baseman Brian Roberts.
27 820 Bryan Harper LHP JC of Southern Nevada Nev.
Lefthander Bryan Harper will probably always be known as Bryce's brother. He had a forgettable freshman season at Cal State Northridge in 2009, going 0-4, 6.68 with 15 strikeouts and 22 walks over 32 innings. He showed a jump in his velocity this season, sitting at 88-91 mph and dialing it up to 93-94 on occasion. He has a 6-foot-5, 195-pound frame, but doesn't always use his height to his advantage. He worked hard to have better body control with his delivery and the results have shown up with better command. Like his brother, he's a fiery competitor. Harper profiles as a 6th-10th-round talent, but could be taken higher by the Nationals, who may want to keep the two together. He will almost certainly bypass his commitment to South Carolina to go pro.
28 850 Joe Zeller RHP The Master's (Calif.) Calif.
29 880 Casey Harman LHP Clemson S.C. $150,000
Harman, miscast as a staff ace, is a solid three-pitch lefthander with steady stuff, including an 85-89 mph fastball with good sink. His straight changeup and slider are fringe-average but play up when he commands the two-seamer.
30 910 Karsten Strieby 1B Arizona Western JC Ariz.
31 940 Benito Santiago 1B Lon Morris (Texas) JC Texas
32 970 Brent Ebinger LHP Lambuth (Tenn.) Tenn.
33 1000 Matt Stites RHP Jefferson (Mo.) CC Mo.
Righthander Stites stands just 5-foot-11 and 170 pounds, but he has a big arsenal. Before he tired toward the end of the season, Stites showed an 88-92 mph fastball that touched 94, a slider that served as an out pitch and a solid curveball. He's a quick-twitch athlete rather than a max-effort thrower, and he commands his fastball to both sides of the plate. He may be tough to lure away from a commitment to Missouri for 2010.
34 1030 Dustin Harrington 3B East Carolina N.C.
East Carolina failed to make the NCAA regional field and had a tumultuous season, with shortstop Harrington getting kicked off the team for academic problems in what was shaping up as a stellar season. Harrington, who is a below-average runner and fringy defender at short, will move to second or third base as a professional. His bat made significant progress this season, impressive considering he hit 14 homers as a sophomore. He was more selective and was hitting .443/.474/.679 through 25 games when he was removed from the roster. He was working out individually for scouts.
35 1060 Chris Anderson RHP Centennial HS, Circle Pines, Minn. Minn.
Chris Anderson is the state's top high school prospect, but he's not ready for pro ball and unlikely to get picked high enough to opt against attending Jacksonville. The 6-foot-3, 200-pound righthander has the arm strength to touch 90-91 mph in short stints. He needs to maintain his velocity better and improve the spin on his curveball.
36 1090 Tyler Bremer RHP Yavapai (Ariz.) JC Ariz.
37 1120 Chad Noble C Northwestern Ill.
38 1150 Jeremy Fitzgerald RHP Patrick Henry (Va.) CC Va.
39 1180 Casey Lucchese RHP College of Charleston S.C.
40 1210 Brian Smith LHP St. Mary Catholic SS, Pickering, Ont. Ontario
Lefthander Smith has been mostly 84-87 mph in the past and took his stuff up a notch when the Canadian junior team recently traveled to the Dominican Republic. He worked at 87-90 mph, sitting at 88 with a solid changeup and an above-average curveball. He's a work in progress but could go pretty good in a year thin on lefthanded pitching.
41 1240 Dallas Beeler RHP Oral Roberts Okla. $150,000
42 1270 Trey Nielsen RHP Skyline HS, Salt Lake City Utah
Nielsen has good baseball bloodlines. His father Scott was a sixth-round pick out of Brigham Young in 1983 and spent four seasons pitching in the big leagues. Nielsen passes the eye test at 6-foot-1 and 195 pounds. Scouts liked him better last summer as a third baseman, but he emerged as a righthander this spring. He still needs work as a pitcher but has a good delivery and average arm strength. As a late bloomer Nielsen would have been ideal for the draft-and-follow process before that ended, so now he will likely go to Utah, where he'll play both ways.
43 1300 Dan Winkler RHP Parkland (Ill.) JC Ill.
44 1330 Jake Rogers 1B St. Petersburg (Fla.) JC Fla.
45 1360 Devon Austin C Coeur d'Alene (Idaho) HS Idaho
46 1390 Jerad Eickhoff RHP Olney Central (Ill.) JC Ill.
47 1420 Clayton Crum RHP Klein HS, Spring, Texas Texas
The state has several injured pitchers whom teams could gamble on this year. That group includes: Houston righthander Jared Ray (shoulder) and Texas Tech lefthander Robbie Kilcrease (Tommy John surgery) at the college level; Howard righty Damien Magnifico (elbow), San Jacinto righty Tommy Collier (elbow) and lefty David Rollins (non-throwing shoulder), who ranked as three of Texas' top five juco pitchers coming into the season; and Klein High (Spring) righty Clayton Crum (Tommy John surgery). Crum, the No. 2 pitcher behind Matt Purke at Klein a year ago, wasn't 100 percent but came back to pitch in the playoffs and won four games to lead his team to the 5-A regional finals. An Ohio State recruit, Crum hit 94 mph with his fastball before blowing out his elbow.
48 1450 Eric Paulson 3B Fremd HS, Palatine, Ill. Ill.
49 1480 Bryce Shafer RHP Valparaiso Ind.
50 1510 Eric Jagielo SS Downers Grove (Ill.) North HS Ill.