Diamondbacks Draft Report Card
BEST PURE HITTER:
|The Diamondbacks had seven picks in the first two rounds, and no team added as many gifted position players. Thinned out by promotions and trades in recent year, Arizona's farm system needed a talent—and got it.
The Diamondbacks signed 10 quality bats in the first eight rounds, so there's no shortage of candidates. 1B Ryan Wheeler (5) had the most spectacular debut, hitting .361/.462/.540 while reaching low Class A, but the best pure hitter is OF A.J. Pollock (1), who batted .377 in the Cape Cod League last summer and .271 in low Class A. >> BEST POWER HITTER:
3Bs Bobby Borchering (1) and Matt Davidson (1s) ranked first and third on BA's predraft list of the top high school power hitters. Davidson won the home run derby at the 2008 Aflac game at Dodger Stadium, though Borchering has better bat speed. Neither has as much present power as 1B Paul Goldschmidt (8), who led the Rookie-level Pioneer League in homers (18) and slugging (.638). >> FASTEST RUNNER:
OF Keon Broxton (3) showed off his plus speed by topping the Pioneer League with nine triples. >> BEST DEFENSIVE PLAYER:
Pollock has good speed and fine instincts in center field, but Broxton has the tools to be a superior defender there.
RHP Scottie Allen (11) put on 18 pounds after signing and hit 95 mph by the end of the summer. RHP Eric Smith (2) gets heavy sink on his 90-92 mph fastball and posted a 2.0 groundout/airout ratio in his pro debut. >> BEST SECONDARY PITCH:
LHP Mike Belfiore's (1s) hard breaking ball is slightly better than Smith's.
ODDS AND ENDS
BEST PRO DEBUT:
Wheeler, who led the short-season Northwest League in on-base percentage (.461) and OPS (.999), and Goldschmidt. RHP Charles Brewer (12) topped the Pioneer League with seven wins while showing a 90-93 mph fastball. >> BEST ATHLETE:
Broxton originally signed a football scholarship to play wide receiver at Florida Atlantic before deciding to attend Santa Fe (Fla.) CC. >> MOST INTRIGUING BACKGROUND:
: LHP Patrick Schuster (13) threw four consecutive no-hitters this spring, two shy of the national high school record. 1B Jake Williams (29, Matt), 3B Cade Kreuter (41, Chad) and OF Beau Amaral (45, Rich) are all sons of former big leaguers. The area scout for SS Taylor Wrenn (25) was his father Luke, while OF Tim Sherlock's (40) dad Glenn is Arizona's bullpen coach. Of those players, only Sherlock turned pro. >> CLOSEST TO THE MAJORS:
Pollock's combination of hitting ability, all-around tools and drive should get him to the big leagues before Belfiore and OF Marc Krauss (2), an advanced hitter whose pro debut was cut short by a right ankle injury. >> BEST LATE-ROUND PICK:
The Diamondbacks like several pitchers from the later rounds, including Brewer, Schuster, LHP Ryan Robowski (16) and RHP Jake Hale (27). >> THE ONE WHO GOT AWAY:
Wrenn, Arizona's highest unsigned pick, is a slick fielder who will replace 2009 first-rounder Grant Green at Southern California after transferring from Manatee (Fla.) CC.