PUERTO RICO ***
The Blue Jays overdrafted Puerto Rican outfielders in the first round of the last two drafts in order to save money, but they aren't expected to go that route again. Two of Puerto Rico's best prospects, shortstop Andy Gonzalez and lefthander/outfielder Luis Gonzalez, are playing in Florida, but the island still should generate at least three other early picks.
Projected First-Round Picks
Projected Second- to Fifth-Round Picks
Angel Garcia. A former catcher, Garcia opened eyes in his first year as a pitcher. He's projectable at 6-foot-6 and 190 pounds, and he already throws 90-91 mph with an occasional 94. Because of his inexperience, he lacks command or consistent secondary pitches, but that doesn't detract from his ceiling. His youth team is coached by Toronto scout Jorge Rivera, so the Blue Jays might draft the first Puerto Rican for the third consecutive year. Garcia could go as early as the end of the second round.
Raul Rivera. Almost all of Puerto Rico's best prospects attended a showcase for scouts in early May, and no player helped himself more than Rivera. His catch-and-throw skills already were held in regard, but his bat was in question. He erased some of those doubts by hitting four homers and factors into the third or fourth round.
Jose Morales. Morales has solid tools across the board for a shortstop, except for his speed. He runs a 6.8-second 60-yard dash, which is just average for the position, and he's slow getting out of the batter's box. On the positive side, he's a switch-hitter who can handle the bat. Defensively, he has a strong arm and dependable hands.
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