Draft Blog: Day One




See also: Royals take Hochevar with first pick; pitching at a premium in first round


Throughout the first day of the draft, Baseball America's reporters will keep you updated with an ongoing draft day blog. Refresh often, as we'll be updating the blog throughout the day.

Who's Left For Day Two
8 p.m.: Each year, invariably, a handful of talented high school players go undrafted because of signability concerns. Jason Jarvis (No. 74) was the highest-ranked player from BA's Draft Preview Top 200 Prospects not to be taken on the first day. He committed to San Diego. Derrick Lutz, a junior righty from George Washington, also went undrafted today. Clubs could be concerned about his health. Lutz was a Baseball America summer All-American thanks to his performance in the Cape Cod League last summer. He did not allow an earned run in 25 innings, notching 12 saves, 39 punchouts and three walks with Chatham. Elbow tendinitits held him back this spring, and his velocity and stuff had not been as consistently sound as they were last summer.
--Alan Matthews

It's Over
7:09 p.m.: The first day of the 2006 MLB draft has ended, as the draft will pick up tomorrow with the 19th round. The final pick of the first day was the Cardinals choice of Amary Carzana Marti.
-- J.J. Cooper

Bat Speed Dooms Clark
7:08 p.m.: Brewers' 18th-rounder Andrew Clark displayed intriguing power on the high school showcase and tournament circuit last spring. He was even chose to the Aflac All-American game, but his stock never caught up to his power, based mostly on fringy bat speed and other tools.
-- Alan Matthews

Sophomores Slide
7:06 p.m.: A disappointing end to Nebraska's season continued today, as both of the Huskers sophomore-eligible draft candidates fell hard. Southpaw Tony Watson spent time this season being considered as a potential top-three rounder, but instead, he slid to pick 505 in the 17th round. His teammate, shortstop Ryan Wehrle, went 29 picks later, picked by the Reds. Given each player's draft day fall, there's a pretty good chance they could return to Lincoln this fall.
-- Bryan Smith

Catch-And-Throw Catch
6:52 p.m.: Northeastern catcher Matt Morizio went to the Royals to start off the 17th round. Morizio has solid catch-and-throw skills and excellent makeup, but he lacks power and scouts wonder if he'll hit against advanced pitching. He could be more intriguing on the mound, where he touched 92 mph with a downer curveball as Northeastern's closer.
--Aaron Fitt

Phillies Take A Chance On Cooper
6:32 p.m.: Before the draft, the Phillies had showed interest in Riley Cooper, and they took a flier in drafting him in the 15th round. A talented two-sport prep star from Clearwater, Fla., Cooper missed most of his senior season after putting his arm through a car window. He has committed to Florida, where he could be a standout college football player.
-- Alan Matthews

White Lands In The 14th Round
6:25 p.m.: Alex White, a righthander from Conley HS in Greenville, N.C., was drafted by the Dodgers in the 14th round. The Dodgers scouted his last outing, which came this past weekend in the North Carolina Class 3-A title game. White's velocity was in the low-90s, a tick off the mid-90s he flashed at times this spring when his stock skyrocketed.
--Alan Matthews

Worth A Look
6:25 p.m.: There obviously aren't any sure things in the 15th round, but the Reds picked up a prospect with a lot of potential. Rafael Sanchez, a third baseman from Queensborough CC, has plus raw power and a strong arm, but he is very raw and might not have enough agility for third base. He has good upside, though, for a 15th-rounder.
-- Aaron Fitt

LaPorta Is Finally Picked
6:20 p.m.: It only took 433 picks, but Florida's Matt LaPorta was finally taken by the Red Sox at the end of the 14th round. The first baseman led the nation in home runs as a sophomore while setting a school record with 26. He strained an oblique in February though, and his season went in a tailspin. Laporta hit .259-14-38 with two doubles in 158 at-bats this season. His all or nothing approach cost him dearly and coupled with the fact he is a Scott Boras client, he fell deep into the first day of the draft.
--Matt Meyers

Nats Busy In New Jersey
5:59 p.m.: The Nationals, who already drafted the top pitcher in New Jersey when they grabbed Sean Black in the second round, also drafted the No. 2 arm in the Garden State in 12th-round pick Cole Kimball out of Centenary. Kimball, who transferred from St. John's, is a pure arm-strength righthander who touches 93-94 mph and has a major league body but little feel for pitching.
-- Aaron Fitt

Fournier Boasts A Plus Curve
5:57 p.m.: Franklin Pierce righthander Daniel Fournier, an 11th-round pick of the Diamondbacks, struck out 88 batters in 62 innings thanks to an above-average 76-77 mph curveball. Fellow Franklin Pierce righty Shane Presutti, who gave up four earned runs in two innings of relief in a loss to Tampa in the Division II national championship round, was nabbed in the 12th by the A's.
--Aaron Fitt

Dickey Gets Drafted
5:55 p.m.: Gavin Dickey went off the board in the 12th round, as the Mariners selected the Florida outfielder. Dickey played quarterback and wide receiver on the Gators football team and helped the Gators baseball club reach the finals of the College World Series in 2005. and improved this spring to hit .304-11-41. He's athletic but needs to improve his plate discipline as a pro after posting a 25-103 walk-strikeout ratio the last two seasons in 400 at-bats.
-- John Manuel

New Zealand Gets Its First Draftee
5:26 p.m.: The Blue Jays' ninth-round pick, Gonzaga second baseman Scott Campbell, is the first New Zealander ever drafted. Campbell is a product of New Zealand's youth baseball system, then came to the U.S. to play and spent two years at in junior college in Arizona before playing at Gonzaga this spring. He ranked in the West Coast Conference with a .488 on-base percentage, 39 walks and a .389 batting average. His bat is seen as his best tool.
-- John Manuel

Boman Picked Despite Labrum Troubles
5:25 p.m.: Labrum surgeries don't have a high success rate with pitchers, but in the ninth round, it's a gamble the Angels were willing to take. The Halos selected Nate Boman with the 282nd overall pick, a former University of San Diego pitcher that did not throw an inning in 2006. In 2005, however, the southpaw was pitching himself high on draft lists, profiling as a potential top-three rounder. While his shoulder injury pushed him down considerably, the Angels saw his career at USD -- which involves 122 strikeouts in 99 career innings -- and crossed their fingers.
--Bryan Smith

Injury Leads To Fall For Kalish
5:25 p.m.: New Jersey prep outfielder Ryan Kalish is a third-round talent who fell to the Red Sox in the ninth round because he figures to be a tough sign. Kalish, who has committed to Virginia, also was hurt by an arm injury that limited his time in the outfield this season. He has a body and makeup that reminds scouts of another high school outfielder drafted by the Red Sox: Trot Nixon. It is uncertain, however, if Kalish will develop Nixon-like power in order to play a corner outfield spot professionally, and he might not have quite enough speed for center.
--Aaron Fitt

Yankees May Have A Steal In The Ninth
5:20 p.m.: The Yankees might have gotten the top college closer available, as low as the ninth round, in Arizona righthander Mark Melancon. The Wildcats reliever has a fastball that usually sits in the 92-94 mph range and a power breaking ball, but he missed the season's final weeks due to a strained elbow ligament. He didn't pitch after April 7. Melancon told the Tucson Citizen that he has an MRI that clears him medically.
-- John Manuel

Betances Finally Off The Board
5:17 p.m.: Brooklyn high school righthander Dellin Betances finally went off the board--to the Yankees, of course. The Mets still managed to one-up their crosstown rivals in the eighth round by taking 6-foot-10 Nathan Hedrick from Barton (Kan.) CC--one of the few players in the draft taller than the 6-9 Betances. Indications were that Betances would likely go to St. Petersburg JC unless he went in the first couple of rounds, but the Yankees might be able to change his mind if they offer him a signing bonus that approaches seven figures. Betances was the top-rated player in New York, but he was the fifth player taken from the state because of teams' reluctance to enter negotiations with him. Betances is being pulled in a number of different directions by his high school coach (Melvin Martinez), his summer league coach (Mel Zitter), his advisor (Jim Murray of Hendricks Sports Management), and his family. The Betances circus even included the intimation that he would attend Vanderbilt and take his chances with the draft again in three years unless he was drafted high, but most scouts believe that is a ploy and were put off by it.
--Aaron Fitt

All In The Family
5:14 p.m.: Jeremy Barfield, who went in the ninth round to the Mets, is the son of former big leaguer Jesse Barfield and the brother of Padres second baseman Josh Barfield.
-- Matt Meyers

Marlins Stick With Pitching
5:12 p.m.: In the ninth round, the Mariners continued their pitching-heavy draft with righty Justin Souza, a third-year JC pitcher who was expected to sign quickly despite his Arizona State commitment. Souza has shown 90-94 mph velocity and a decent slider out of a quick-armed, 6-foot-1, 188-pound body. He shot up draft lists and had a sky-high number from the MLB Scouting Bureau, but area scouts with clubs were less impressed due to his maximum-effort delivery and smallish frame.
-- John Manuel

Starting And Finishing Well
5:08 p.m.: Tigers eighth-round pick Chris Cody boosted his stock by book-ending his season with a complete-game, 10-strikeout shutout against Tulane in Manhattan's season opener and a complete-game, seven-strikeout win against Nebraska in the regionals this weekend. Cody, a soft-tossing lefthander with a plus changeup and a very advanced feel for pitching, threw nine shutouts on the season.
-- Will Kimmey

One For The Stat Heads
5:07 p.m.: The Padres' eighth-round choice of Tom King will please the statistically inclined. King transferred from South Carolina and posted a .416 average with 34 doubles for the nation's most productive offense at Troy this spring.
-- Alan Matthews

Yankees Strike In Connecticut
5:02 p.m.:
The Yankees struck a blow in the territorial battle over Connecticut against the Red Sox, taking UConn righthander Tim Norton in the seventh round. Ironically, several scouts predicted Norton would be a budget-saving senior sign in the top five rounds for a smaller market team, but chances are the Yankees like him more for his tenacity and mid-90s fastball and good splitter than his price tag. He does have a funky delivery, and one scout said he saw Norton fall off the mound onto his butt three separate times this year.
-- Aaron Fitt

Braves Turn To Russell County Again
5:01 p.m.: With the 220th pick, the Braves drafted their second Russell County High product, taking infielder Adam Coe. Coe transferred to the 2005 Alabama Class 5-A title holders from Columbus (Ga.) High prior to his senior season. He has good bat speed and was thought to be signable if taken in the top eight rounds. The Braves took him in the seventh.
-- Alan Matthews

UCLA Football Player Gets Picked Again
5 p.m.: Another year, another draft for UCLA's Jarrod Page, the football player who hasn't played baseball for the Bruins this season. The Angels popped him in the seventh round, two rounds later than the Brewers took him in 2002 out of high school. Page was a four-year starter at safety for the Bruins who played in 2005 for the baseball team but did not play in 2006 as he prepared for the NFL draft. He's unlikely to sign immediately, as he was also taken by the Kansas City Chiefs in the seventh round of the NFL draft. The Rockies drafted Page in the 32nd round last year. He hit just .195 in 221 at-bats in 2004-2005.
-- John Manuel

Pace Pitcher Gets Picked
4:56 p.m.: Astros seventh-round pick David Qualben became the first pitcher drafted out of Division II Pace (N.Y.), which figures to have a few more arms drafted today in righthanders Bryan Hallberg and Earl Oaks. Qualben doesn't throw quite as hard as Hallberg, but he is lefthanded and showed improved command as the season wore on, although it is a bit surprising that he went in the first 10 rounds.
-- Aaron Fitt

Dodgers Travel To Puerto Rico Again
4:56 p.m.:
A year after taking Ivan De Jesus Jr., out of Puerto Rico in the second round, the Dodgers drafted another Puerto Rican on the first day, this time taking first baseman Jamie Ortiz in the seventh round. Ortiz has drawn comparisons to fromer Dodgers first baseman Franklin Stubbs for his lefthanded swing. He has a pull approach and shows little feel for hitting, rarely attempting to hit the ball up the middle or to the opposite field.
-- Alan Matthews

AFLAC Home Run Champ Picked
4:55 p.m.: Robbie Alcombrack, who went in the seventh-round to the Indians, was the surprise winner of the home run derby at the Aflac All-American last summer. As more heralded sluggers wilted in the preliminaries, Alcombrack snuck through and defeated Kyle Drabek in the finals.

SoCal Seventh Round
4:52 p.m.: Round Seven was all about SoCal for four straight picks. The Reds started it, taking Justin Turner out of Cal State Fullerton, a grinder and senior who has plenty of playability but is short on tools. The Orioles followed with former Long Beach State righty Josh Tamba, who had transferred to Cypress JC and was not under control to any team. He's physical and has a low-90s fastball that he controls well. The Giants followed with Brett Pill, the Fullerton first baseman who has long levers and should hit for more power than he has shown in college. The Diamondbacks finished the four-player run with righthander Dan Stange of UC Riverside, whose teammate with the Highlanders, outfielder Brett Bigler, started off the round as the Royals pick. Stange is a reliever who throws in the low 90s with a maximum effort delivery. Pill might have the highest ceiling of the group if he can find his stroke with wood.

Bailey Bounces Back
Athletics sixth-round pick Andrew Bailey out of Wagner was viewed as a potential fourth- or fifth-round talent a year ago before Tommy John surgery in May torpedoed his stock. He came back strong this year, showing 92-93 mph heat and touching 94, but the A's will have to work on his max-effort, violent delivery so he doesn't end up back on the surgeon's table.
-- Aaron Fitt

Pirates Stay Close To Home
4:45 PM: The Pirates stayed local with Pittsburgh second baseman Jim Negrych in the sixth round. Negrych is an above-average hitter with some pop, but he is not a very good defensive second baseman and profiles more as a bat off the bench who can fill in at second or left field. But he has some of the best makeup in the draft and could find a way prove scouts wrong and become an everyday big leaguer.
-- Aaron Fitt

LaPorta Continues To Slide
4:40 p.m.: Defensive specialist Brian Jeroloman was taken by the Toronto Blue Jays in the sixth round, the second of the bearish Gator trio to be drafted today. The only player of the group remaining on the board is LaPorta, the highest ranked of the bunch this spring. LaPorta's disappointing 2006 and bonus demands are lending to quite the draft day fall, and they also lead to the distinct possibility that the Gators have bring their best slugger back. Look for LaPorta to follow in the steps of Jeff Larish and swing the aluminum bat for one more season.
-- Bryan Smith

Monzingo Outdueled Ottavino
4:40 p.m.: Royals sixth-rounder Harold Mozingo out of Virginia Commonwealth threw a complete game to beat Cardinals first-rounder Adam Ottavino of Northeastern in the Colonial Athletic Association tournament. Mozingo held the Huskies to three runs on four hits while striking out five, while Ottavino allowed seven runs--three earned--on 10 hits over seven innings.
-- Aaron Fitt

Rangers Eye A Tough Sign
4:38 p.m.: The Rangers drafted Jacob Brigham in the sixth round, although he won't sign for a pittance. The Central Florida signee entered the spring as one of the nation's most intriguing high school pitchers, but had a rough start to his spring. He pitched against poor competition, so his stats were actually very good, but his mechanics were out of whack and his stuff and velocity took a step back.
-- Alan Matthews

Braves Pick Has Unfinished Business
4:23 p.m.: Plucky lefthanded closer Kevin Gunderson, the Braves' fifth-round pick out of Oregon State, guaranteed the Beavers would be back in Omaha this year for the College World Series, and it looks like he meant business. Oregon State is just two wins against Stanford away from making Gunderson look like a prophet. Scouts say his stuff was slightly down this year, likely a product of wear and tear on his slight build, but he is tenacious and has a great feel for pitching.
-- Aaron Fitt

Tigers Go For Power
4:20 p.m.: The Tigers popped one of the draft's most powerful hitters in the fourth round, Kentucky first baseman Ryan Strieby. Strieby has some holes in his swing, but when he squares up balls, he can really drive them deep to all parts of the park.
-- Alan Matthews

ERA Leader Gets Popped
4:13 p.m.: The Mets drafted righthander Steve Holmes in the fifth round. He led the nation with a 1.30 ERA in 104 innings at Rhode Island and has the best feel for pitching of any player in the Northeast this year.
-- Will Kimmey

On The Radar
4:13 p.m.: Devin Shepherd, who went in the fifth-round to the Twins, has long been on the prospect radar screen. He won MVP of the Aflac All-America game last year, but he fell because scouts were concerned that the tools he flashed in showcases did not transfer into games.
-- Matt Meyers

How Did That Work Out?
4:10 p.m.: Cory VanAllen turned down the Dodgers when they drafted him in the third round of out high school in 2003. Three years later, he goes to the Nationals in the fifth round. While VanAllen slid in the draft, he did get three years of school at Baylor and a trip to the 2005 College World Series out of his decision.
-- Will Kimmey
Cubs Nab Golden Domer
4:06 p.m.: The Cubs, as expected, took Jeff Samardzija in the fifth round with their second pick. The Notre Dame righthander and All-America wide receiver intends to play both sports, which scared off teams enough to help him drop to the Cubs. The Cubs might spend first-round money on Samardzija in what's sure to be a back-loaded deal that allows him to play football this fall, a commitment Samardzija has made repeatedly. Samardzija has first-round talent with a fastball up to 94 mph and a developing slider that has shown improvement this spring as his season progressed and he got deeper into baseball season. The Cubs have a strong relationship with Notre Dame, as both scouting director Tim Wilken and especially GM Jim Hendry are longtime friends of Irish coach Paul Mainieri.
-- John Manuel

Old Teammates Go Quickly
4:03 p.m.: A pair of Florida Christian High grads went off the board in the top four rounds. Sean Watson, a reliever from Tennessee, was taken in the second round and Miami reliever Ricky Orta went to Seattle in the fourth round. The twosome played together in 2003 at Florida Christian High.
-- Alan Matthews

Royals Like Godin's Strikeouts
3:58 p.m.: The Royals opened round five by taking Jason Godin. He ranked 11th in the nation with 11.4 strikeouts per nine innings at Old Dominion, where he improved under coach Jerry Meyers. The Royals like arms developed by Meyers, having drafted Matt Campbell, Billy Buckner and Chad Blackwell in 2004 out of South Carolina, where Meyers served as their pitching coach.
--Will Kimmey

Cardinals Roll The Dice
3:48 p.m.: The Cardinals ended the third round by taking Gary Daley, a pitcher with pro stuff but a poor performance in his draft year. They closed the next round by taking Rice's Eddie Degerman, a pitcher with dominating numbers but mechanics that scared away some scouts. The Rice righthander' unorthodox straight-over-the-top arm slot and huge curveball helped him to a 12-1, 1.67 senior season with 150 strikeouts in 113 innings.
-- Will Kimmey

An Unusual Trend
3:43 p.m.: For the second straight year, the Yankees drafted a cancer survivor. Last year it was Chris Malec from UC Santa Barbara and this season it was Colin Curtis in the fourth round out of Arizona State. Their third-round pick in 2003, Tim Battle, was diagnosed with lymphoma soon after the Yankees drafted him and he overcame his cancer as well.
-- Matt Meyers

Red Sox Picking From The Pack
3:42 p.m.: The Red Sox have gone strong after college players who wore red socks, drafting North Carolina State sluggers Aaron Bates (third) and Jon Still (fourth). Both players entered college as catchers with solid power, but Bates (.354-10-54) shifted to first base and Still (.350-8-58) played mostly DH. There's still a chance for Boston to complete the Wolfpack catching trifecta by selecting Caleb Mangum, a junior who was State's regular catcher and hit .354-4-34.
-- Will Kimmey

High Risk, High Reward?
3:42 p.m.: The Mets took a flier on a high risk pitcher in the fourth round when they took John Holdzkom. This is what we wrote about John Holdzkom a year ago: "While Jason Neighborgall went in the third round, his high school equivalent did not go until much later. With their 15th round selection, the Mariners took Jonathan Holdzkom, a righthander out of Rancho Cucamonga (Calif.) HS. A 6-foot-7 righthander, Holdzkom can already hit 93 mph, but was so wild he hardly got a chance to pitch when he was available. Holdzkom, whose older brother Lincoln is a pitcher in the Marlins system, was academically ineligible for the first few weeks of the season so he only threw a handful of innings. It was essentially a lost season for the flame throwing high schooler." Holdzkom never signed with the Mariners and went to Salt Lake CC but dropped out after an argument with his coach during a game.
--Matt Meyers

Gibson Has Good Bloodlines
3:40 p.m.: Glenn Gibson became the first player drafted from New York when the Nationals selected him in the fourth round. The son of former major leaguer Paul Gibson, Glenn is a polished lefthander with a projectable 6-foot-4 frame and outstanding makeup. He commands his mid-80s fastball, curveball and changeup very well, helping him rack up 115 strikeouts and just six walks in 47 innings against weak high school competition. New York City prep righthander Dellin Betances was projected as the top player in the Empire State, but concerns about his signability, mechanics and polish caused him to slide despite his enormous potential. Gibson also has a fairly high ceiling because of his frame (though he doesn't throw nearly as hard presently), but he has a very clean delivery and figures to be a much easier sign.
-- Aaron Fitt

Kimmey 1, Matthews 0
3:30 p.m.: When the Rangers drafted Florida high school shortstop Marcus Lemon in the fourth round, it settled a Baseball America bet that was nearly two years old. High school writer Alan Matthews liked fellow Florida prep infielder Ryan Jackson more at the 2004 World Wood Bat Showcase, while I put my name on Lemon, the son of former major league outfielder Chet Lemon. Alan, you owe me lunch.
-- Will Kimmey

Giants Add Another Arm
3:27 p.m.: The Giants grabbed another power arm in fourth-rounder Ben Snyder. The Ball State lefthander held No. 1 seed Kentucky, a team that led the NCAA tournament field in homers, to four hits and one run over eight strong innings Friday. His older brother Brad was an Indians first-rounder as an outfielder out of Ball State in 2003.
-- Will Kimmey

Red Sox Draftee Conquered The Yips
3:25 p.m.: The Red Sox got Rice righthander Bryce Cox, an intriguing senior sign who was face down in the draft pool at this time a year ago. Cox was considered a first five rounds talent last year before developing the yips--a complete inability to find the strike zone. Cox was struggling this spring as well with an ERA hovering around 7 until the Owls coaching staff altered his arm angle. Voila--Cox started throwing 97 mph with his fastball with a high-80s slider and pitched well for the Owls in the regional against Prairie View A&M in a tight game. Cox's story seems like a success story for a player who had the yips.
--John Manuel

First Canadian Off The Board:
3:23 p.m.: Kyle Orr goes to the Dodgers in the fourth round, with pick 113 overall. Orr was rumored to be moving up into the first round late in the draft cycle. The Kentucky signee, a raw, long-bodied lefthanded slugger, is likely to sign because he went this high. He's also considered a decent prospect on the mound, if his hitting tool doesn't pan out.
-- John Manuel

Speediest Prospect Is Taken
3:23 p.m.: Derrick Robinson, the fastest man in the draft, is off the board to the Royals with the first pick of the fourth round. The outfielder was clocked at 6.19 in the 60-yard dash and is signed to play football at Florida, though he has indicated he wants to sign.
-- Matt Meyers

Third Round Breakdown
3:18 p.m.: College hitters have their turn in the third round in the final installment of our round breakdowns.

COLLEGE (17)
Hitters (11): Ford, Boesch, Bates, Valaika, Hankerd, Tracy, Gillespie, Cousins, Donald, Moresi, Adam Davis
Pitchers (6): Wood, Weiser, Buck, Joe Smith, Cox, Daley

HIGH SCHOOL (13)
Hitters (5): Langley, King, Hunter, Sulentic, Moldenhauer
Pitchers (8): Fuller, Butler, Britton, Tanner, Robertson, Rodgers, McAllister, Edwards
-- Matt Eddy

Cousins Is A Scout's Favorite
3:15 p.m.: The Marlins took Scott Cousins with the 95th overall pick, and area scouts in Northern California probably all gave a knowing nod to the pick. Cousins became a scouts' favorite this spring as a self-made player, one who improved vastly in his college career as he matured phsyically and honed his skills. Cousins was considered a pitching prospect as well, but his solid swing and athleticism had several scouts profiling him as a corner outfielder with future above-average power.
-- John Manuel

Rough Season Works Out For Daley
3:13 p.m.: Cal Poly's season never came together as the Mustangs hoped, but righthander Gary Daley ended up going pretty good in the draft despite his own struggles. Cal Poly's No. 2 starter (he fell behind Bud Norris as the year went on) found a home at the end of the third round with a team that often is a sanctuary for Scott Boras clients like Daley, the Cardinals. Daley went 7-8, 5.48 this season as his control suffered (61 walks in 110 IP). Even last summer, when Daley was the No. 2 prospect in the Alaska League, he was a bit wild, walking 28 in 53 frames and striking out 51. Daley proved hittable this spring despite a fastball that sits at 92-93 and a potential power breaking ball; he gave up 124 hits, including 27 doubles.
-- John Manuel

Rodgers Impresses On Draft Eve
3:12 p.m.: The Braves drafted Chad Rodgers, a projectable lefty from Walsh Jesuit High in Stow, Ohio. Rodgers spent the eve of the draft on the mound, tossing a three-hit shutout over Pataskala Watkins Memorial High in a Division II state semifinal game. Rodgers and Walsh Jesuit met Notre Dame-Cathedral Latin High for the state championship today. Rodgers struck out 15 and walked four in raising his record to 8-0 this year and 18-0 for his career. He struck out the side three times and had two strikeouts in two other innings.
-- Alan Matthews

From Nowhere To The Third Round
3:10 p.m.: Joe Smith, the Mets third-round pick, had shoulder surgery as a senior in high school and couldn't make the Wright State roster as a freshman. When he walked on in 2004, he dropped his arm slot to sidearm his velocity shot into the low 90s and began to dominate. He posted a 0.75 ERA this season and would have led Division I, but he was five innings short of qualifying.
-- Matt Meyers

Gators Still Waiting To Be Picked
3:09 p.m.: Florida's junior trio of Matt LaPorta, Adam Davis and Brian Jeroloman looked like some of the best position players in the college draft class of 2006. All of them slumped, leading to Florida's last-place finish in the Southeastern Conference. Davis entered the year looking like he might be the third of the trio selected and ended up being the first, going 101st overall to the Indians. LaPortta entered the year as a potential first rounder, but an oblique injury and an approach that turned nearly every at-bat into a homer or strikeout late in the year have dropped the bottom out of his stock. His power remains among the draft's best, and Jeroloman remains the best defensive catcher available.
--Will Kimmey

Astros Find A Good Glove In Center
3:03 p.m.: Houston drafted but couldn't sign Drew Stubbs out of high school in 2003, and didn't get another chance at him this year as he went eighth overall. But the Astros might have found a similar player in the third round by grabbing Fresno State center fielder Nick Moresi. Moresi reached double-figures in homers and steals as a sophomore, but lost much of his power and confidence following a wrist injury. He still played gold glove center field defense, but hit just two homers during the regular season. Moresi looked strong again in regionals, cranking two homers in a game against San Diego.
-- Will Kimmey

Tigers Steal Another One
2:59 p.m.: The Tigers found a nice value when Andrew Miller dropped to them in the first round, and might have landed another gem in the second in Ohio State third baseman Ronnie Bourquin. He led the Big 10 with a .416 average, .612 slugging percentage, .492 on-base percentage and 66 RBIs. He's the highest-drafted Buckeye since the A's grabbed Nick Swisher in the first round (16th overall) in 2002.
-- Will Kimmey

On The Rise
2:50 p.m.: Nick Fuller's late-season surge carried him into the third round. He has a power fastball-slider repertoire that ranks among the top present mix of pitches in the draft, although it's inconsistent, His delivery isn't pretty, but if Tampa Bay's player development staff can smooth him out, he could come on as a high-ceiling reliever.
--Alan Matthews

Miami Isn't Just In Florida
2:49 p.m.: Miami (Ohio) has seen more pitchers drafted thus far than Miami (Florida). The White Sox drafted Matt Long (second) and the Rockies got Keith Weiser (third), both Redhawks in college. The Cardinals drafted Hurricanes closer Chris Perez in the supplemental first round.
--Will Kimmey

Second Round Breakdown
2:47 p.m.: As John Manuel foresaw, college pitchers continue to be the hottest commodity through the second round:

COLLEGE (17)
Pitchers (12): Butler, Felix, Watson, Furnish, Wright, LeBlanc, Mulvey, Carpenter, Perez, Evans, Masterson, Long
Hitters (5): Bourquin, Huffman, Rodriguez, Hodges, Jay

HIGH SCHOOL (12)
Pitchers (5): Tillman, Locke, Brett Anderson, Sean Black, Cahill
Hitters (7): Taylor, Christensen, Adams, Brewer, Hickman, Benson, Englund

JUNIOR COLLEGE (1)
Hitter (1): Fontaine
--Matt Eddy

Power To Spare
2:41 p.m.:
The Cardinals drafted Tulane's Mark Hamilton in the supplemental second round and might have gotten the best power bat from the college ranks. He reached 20 home runs this season despite playing his home games at Zephyr Field. Had Hurricane Katrina not derailed the Turchin Stadium renovation, Hamilton may well have passed national homer leader Kellen Kulbacki, who hit 24 homers for James Madison.
-- Will Kimmey

Braves Take A JC Star
2:38 p.m.:
The Braves locked up Tyler Flowers as a draft-and-follow pick from 2005 who attended Chipola (Fla.) JC, and added another prominent junior college position player with the 72nd-overall selection. Daytona Beach (Fla.) JC infielder Chase Fontaine offers a lefthanded bat with juice. He elected not to sign with the Rangers, who drafted him in the 18th round last year.
--Alan Matthews

More Love For Long Beach State
2:36 p.m.: For the fourth straight year, Long Beach State pitchers have a major impact in the draft with a pick in the first two rounds. Righthander Andrew Carpenter was the latest pitcher to go out of LBSU in the first two rounds, following Cesar Ramos (supplemental first, 2005), Jason Vargas and Jered Weaver (2004, second and first rounds) and Abe Alvarez (2003 second). Carpenter, who has above-average command of a four-pitch repertoire, went ahead of more heralded teammate Jered Hughes, who had yet to go off the board in the first 74 picks.
-- John Manuel

Hodges Slides Down Draft Boards
2:35 p.m.: In a draft that has featured a bevy of hitters with significant deficiencies taken higher than they might be during a stronger draft year, Wes Hodges' slide was somewhat shocking. A third baseman who doesn't project to hit for much power, Hodges played injured at Georgia Tech much of the year. The Indians snapped him up with the 69th-overall pick, easily later than where he projected to be taken entering his junior season after he hit .309 with USA Baseball's college national team in 2005.
-- Alan Matthews

Brewers Get A Sleeper
2:28 p.m.: The Brewers' second-round choice of Tom Hickman was a savvy one. A talented outfielder who was off to a slow start this spring after playing basketball in the winter, Hickman played his best late in the season and flew somewhat under the radar. He has a strong approach at the plate, and also a nasty two-pitch mix off the mound as a lefthander. The Brewers announced him as a center fielder, and he will likely end up on a corner.
-- Alan Matthews

A's Take The Preps Route
2:27 p.m.: For the second straight year, the Athletics went with a high school pitcher high, and this year it was with their top pick. At No. 66 overall, Oakland selected righthander Trevor Cahill, a Dartmouth signee out of Vista HS in San Diego. Cahill threw less than 20 innings in 2005 but emerged as Vista High's ace this spring, throwing in the 90-92 mph range with a potentially above-average spike curveball.
-- John Manuel

Nationals Get Their Man
2:26 p.m.: The Nationals, whose scouting director Dana Brown hails from New Jersey, coveted New Jersey high school righthander Sean Black, even considering him in the first round. He would have been a reach that early, so they passed, but they were able to pounce on him in the second round with the 59th overall pick. Black's stock skyrocketed this spring as he showed off a fresh, electric arm and low to mid-90s velocity and a promising, biting curveball.
--Aaron Fitt

Another College Righthander
2:26 p.m.: With their first pick in the draft, the Mets drafted Villanova righthander Kevin Mulvey 62nd overall. It's the third straight draft they've used their first pick on a college righthander. (Mike Pelfrey, Philip Humber)
-- Matt Eddy

On The Move
2:25 p.m.: The Orioles announced their second-round pick of Ryan Adams as a third baseman. A shortstop at Jesuit High in New Orleans, Adams bulked up this season and lacks the range to play middle infield. He also battled a hamstring injury which played a part in him slipping to the second round after opening the season as a potential first-round pick.
-- Alan Matthews

Padres Take Two-Sport Star
2:21 p.m.: Chad Huffman, the Padres' second-round pick (53rd overall), hit 18 home runs for Texas Christian this year. He also appeared in four games last fall as a quarterback for the Horned Frogs' football team.
--Aaron Fitt

Rockies Nab Christensen
2:18 p.m.: The Rockies were rumored to have taken a particular liking to high school outfielder David Christensen, and they made him their choice at No. 46. Christensen, who committed to Miami, had floated a seven-figure bonus desire in May, but was expected to sign for slot money in the second round and jump to the minors.
-- Alan Matthews

Supplemental Round Stats
2:18 p.m.: Here's a breakdown of the supplemental first round.

COLLEGE (7)
Pitchers (5): Brown, David Huff, Kris Johnson, Chamberlain, Chris Perez
Hitters (2): Burriss, Coghlan

HIGH SCHOOL (6)
Pitchers (3): Rasmus, Evarts, Clay
Hitters (3): Mattingly, Burke, Cardenas

JUNIOR COLLEGE (1)
Pitcher (1): Beato
-- Matt Eddy

Braves Draft Seems Familiar
2:13 p.m.: The Braves has had a lot of success in the past focusing on high school players out of the southeast and that trend has continued today. With their first-round pick, they took Cody Johnson from Mosley High Lynn Haven, Fla. They followed that by taking Cory Rasmus from Russell County High in Alabama and Steven Evarts, a lefthander from Robinson High in Florida.
-- Matt Meyers

Trio Of Teammates
2:12 p.m.:
Three sets of teammates were taken in the top 38 picks: North Carolina pitchers Andrew Miller (Tigers, 6) and Daniel Bard (Red Sox, 28), Miami's Monsignor Pace High infielders Chris Marrero (Nationals, 15) and Adrian Cardenas (Phillies, 37) and Alabama's Russell County High pitchers Kasey Kiker (Rangers, 12) and Cory Rasmus (Braves, 38).
--Alan Matthews

Pace Sets The Pace
2:10 p.m.: Adrian Cardenas was a high school teammate of Chris Marrero, the 15th overall pick of the Nationals, at Monsignor Pace High outside of Miami. Though Marrero is the better prospect, Cardenas had the better season as he hit .630-17-56 while Marrero hit .375-11-26 in leading Pace to the Florida 4A state title. Pace is tied with North Carolina for most players drafted so far with two.
-- Matt Meyers

UCLA Helps Out Huff
2:09 p.m.: A year at UCLA did wonders for lefthander Dave Huff, who went to the Indians with the 39th overall pick. A year ago, the Phillies nabbed Huff in the 19th round out of Cypress (Calif.) Junior College, where he went 4-2, 3.24 with 91 strikeouts in 86 innings. He rang up 100 strikeouts and ranked fifth in the Pac-10 with a 2.98 ERA in 2006.
-- Will Kimmey

Still Looking For A Home
2:08 p.m.: Projected BA first-rounders from our morning mock first round still not taken yet:
Stephen King, ss, HS/Orlando
Brett Anderson, lhp, HS/Oklahoma
Sean Black, rhp, HS/New Jersey

King (Cubs) and Black (Nationals) were tied specifically to one team in the first round, and they went in other directions. Anderson, an extremely polished high school lefthander and the son of Oklahoma State coach Frank Anderson, is more of a surprise. Signability wasn't believed to be an issue, but if he doesn't go in the second round (Marlins and Phillies are candidates), then it may well be a concern.
-- Jim Callis

Beato Lands With Orioles
2:05 p.m.: One of the surprises that arose the week before the draft was the Mets decision not to sign Pedro Beato, whom they drafted out of high school in 2005. He was considered one of the top draft-eligible players in Florida this year after acquitting himself at St. Pete JC. Beato was snapped up by the Orioles with the 32nd-overall pick.
--Alan Matthews
Mattingly Goes Off Board Quickly
2:01 p.m.: There were rumors that Indiana high school shortstop Preston Mattingly could go in the late first or sandwich round, but most figured it would be as part of another skirmish between the Red Sox and Yankees, for whom his father Don once starred and currently serves as a batting coach. Instead, he went to the Dodgers at 31. Mattingly didn't get much play until May. He's a three-sport athlete with a gifted bat, plate discipline and more speed than his dad had. But though he has good tools, his future position is much in question. No word yet on whether Yankees owner George Steinbrenner has fired any scouting personnel for letting Mattingly get away, but Dodgers official Tommy Lasorda did tweak him after announcing the pick by saying, "Thank you, George."
-- Jim Callis

Phillies Like Texas
2 p.m.: The Phillies continued a trend by taking Texas prep Kyle Drabek with their first draft pick. Going back to 2003 when the Phillies drafted Tim Moss out of the University of Texas. (He was a third rounder, as the Phillies did not have a pick in the first two rounds.) Drabek joined Moss and Greg Golson (2004) as top picks for Philadelphia out of Texas recently.

Cape Lands Ten Picks
1:59 p.m.: For the second straight season, 10 players that spent the previous summer in the Cape Cod League were drafted in the first round. The record was in danger of being broken in 2006, but draft day slips of Dave Huff and Justin Masterson kept the record intact. The Cape Cod League players taken: Greg Reynolds, Evan Longoria, Brad Lincoln, Brandon Morrow, Andrew Miller, Tim Lincecum, Matt Antonelli, Brett Sinkbeil, Daniel Bard and Adam Ottavino.
-- Bryan Smith

Looking For A Home
1:56 p.m.: Projected BA first-rounders from our morning mock first round not taken yet:
Stephen King, ss, HS/Orlando
Brett Anderson, lhp, HS/Oklahoma
Joba Chamberlain, rhp, Nebraska
David Huff, lhp, UCLA
Sean Black, rhp, HS/New Jersey
Brooks Brown, rhp, Georgia
Chris Perez, rhp, Miami
--Jim Callis

Another Northeastern Pick
1:53 p.m.: The Cardinals selection of Adam Ottavino was the second time that Northeastern has had a first-round pick. In 1998, the Rangers took first baseman Carlos Pena No. 10 overall.
-- Matt Meyers

Projected Sandwich Round Picks
1:50 p.m.: 31. LAD--Sean Watson, rhp, Tennessee
32. Bal--Emmanuel Burriss, ss, Kent State
33. SF--Chris Tillman, rhp, HS/California
34. Ari--David Huff, lhp, UCLA
35. SD--Kyle Burke, of/lhp, HS/Tennessee
36. Fla--Brett Anderson, lhp, HS/Oklahoma
37. Phi--Jared Mitchell, of, HS/Louisiana
38. Atl--Alex White, rhp, HS/North Carolina
39. Cle--Kevin Mulvey, rhp, Villanova
40. Bos--Kris Johnson, lhp, Wichita State
41. NYY--Pedro Beato, rhp, St. Petersburg (Fla.) JC
42. StL--Chris Perez, rhp, Miami
43. Atl--Derrick Robinson, of, HS/Florida
44. Bos-- Stephen King, ss, HS/Orlando
-- Jim Callis

Two Big-Name College Pitchers Drop
1:50 p.m.: The biggest drop within the first round was North Carolina RHP Daniel Bard, who was the backup choice for the Mariners at No. 5 but went to the Red Sox at No. 28. At times Bard has been as spectacular as his Tar Heels teammate Andrew Miller, but he also has been inconsistent. Dropping all the way out of the first round was Nebraska RHP Joba Chamberlain, who projected as a possible Top 10 pick a couple of weeks ago. Teams became increasingly concerned about his long-term durability since then, though the Twins considered him at No. 20.
-- Jim Callis

First Round Breakdown
1:45 p.m.: Even though it is considered a down year for high school players, there wasn't much difference in the number of high school and college players taken in the first round this year. Overall, 15 college players, 13 high school players, one junior college player and one independent leaguer were taken in the first round. Here's the breakdown:
COLLEGE (15)
Hitters (4): Longoria, Stubbs, Colvin, Antonelli
Pitchers (11): Reynolds, Lincoln, Morrow, Miller, Lincecum, Scherzer, Sinkbeil, Kennedy, Bard, McCulloch, Ottavino

HIGH SCHOOL (13)
Hitters (8): Rowell, Snider, Marrero, Parmalee, Sapp, Cody Johnson, Conger, Place
Pitchers (5): Kershaw, Kiker, Jeffres, Drabek, Willems

JUNIOR COLLEGE (1)
Pitcher: Morris

INDEPENDENT LEAGUES (1)
Pitcher: Hochevar
-- Matt Eddy

Red Sox Unexpectedly Land Bard
1:36 p.m.: The Red Sox used the 28th overall pick--a compensation pick from the Yankees for Johnny Damon--to snap up North Carolina righthander Daniel Bard, who was drafted out of high school by the Yankees in the 20th round in 2003. Bard has been inconsistent with his command this year, helping to explain his drop from the top half of the first round, where he was projected. But he showed very impressive stuff in a regional victory against Winthrop this weekend, pounding the zone with 95 mph fastballs and a devastating 78-80 mph slider.
-- Aaron Fitt

Lining Up For Samardzija?
1:35 p.m.: Tyler Colvin came as one of the first round's largest surprises; new Cubs scouting director Tim Wilken obviously didn't waver from the guy he liked. But don't be surprised if the Cubs opted to go on the cheap early to save money for later. Jim Hendry is longtime friends with Notre Dame coach Paul Mainieri, and given the Colvin pick, don't be surprised to hear Jeff Samardzija land with the Cubs this afternoon.
-- Bryan Smith

Good Decision To Go To College
1:34 p.m.: Kyle McCulloch was originally drafted by the Mets in the 18th round in 2003 out of Bellaire High in Houston. The Mets did not have a second or third round choice that season because of signing Tom Glavine and Cliff Floyd and their was speculation the Mets would try and sign him above slot to get him to bypass college. They did not, and three years later he is a first-round pick.
-- Matt Meyers

Seminoles Signees Go Back To Back
1:33 p.m.: A pair of Florida State signees were snapped up at 23 and 24 as the Astros took Max Sapp at 23, and the Braves took Cody Johnson. A pair of preseason All-Americans, Sapp and Johnson collected Florida player of the year honors in their respective classifications. Sapp, a senior catcher, led Orlando's Bishop Moore High to the state Class 4-A semifinals and a No. 35 national ranking. He batted .591-9-48 with a .775 on-base percentage.
Johnson, a senior first baseman from Mosley High (Lynn Haven) was the Class 5-A winner after batting .522-15-43.
-- Alan Matthews

Blue Jays Take A High Schooler
1:28 p.m.: The Blue Jays selected high school slugger Travis Snider with their first-round pick, marking the first time they have taken a high schooler in the first round since nabbing Puerto Rican product Miguel Negron in 2000. Their first prep selection last year was 2B Wesley Stone in the 11th round.
-- Matt Eddy

Not Their First Deacon
1:27 p.m.: This is not the first time the Padres have gone the Wake Forest route. In 2003 they drafted Baseball America's Ryan Johnson in the 13th round. Johnson is currently BA's Marketplace Manager and his claim to fame is hitting a home run off of Felix Hernandez in the short-season Northwest LEague in 2003. It is one of only two home runs King Felix allowed that year in the NWL.
--Matt Meyers

Roll Of The Dice
1:27 p.m.: The Phillies rolled the dice at 18, taking righthander Kyle Drabek, the son of former Cy Young Award winner Doug Drabek. Drabek's story was chronicled last week on BaseballAmerica.com. His stuff--with a fastball that reaches 96 mph and perhaps the draft's best curveball--would have earned him a spot in the first five picks if not for his makeup issues.
-- John Manuel

First Round Surprise
1:24 p.m.: In the biggest shock of the first half of the first round, the Cubs took a chance on the pro body of Tyler Colvin, the Clemson outfielder Baseball America ranked 170 on the Top 200 prospects. Colvin's stock had surged as Clemson won 21 of its last 22 games and stormed into super-regionals. Colvin, physical at 6-foot-3, 190 pounds, had been rumored to go as high as 29 to the White Sox, but instead the crosstown Cubs took him. Colvin was having a career year and finally showing power as a junior. He hit below .290 his first two seasons, then hit .359-12-65 with a .622 slugging percentage in 2006. He also was 23-for-27 on stolen bases this season.
-- John Manuel

Giants Play It Cool
1:23 p.m.: The Giants always play the draft close to the vest and never let out they were on Washington righthander Tim Lincecum, the one player everyone liked but no one would commit to wanting to select. Lincecum went 12-4, 1.94 with 199 strikeouts. His fastball gets into the upper 90s, meaning Lincecum is the type of power arm San Francisco scouting director Dick Tidrow loves. Lincecum, whose $1 million bonus demand dropped him to the Indians in the 42nd round last year, should earn considerably more than that from the Giants, and could end up wearing their uniform before the season ends.
-- Will Kimmey

Welcome To The First Round, Giants
1:22 p.m.: This is the first first-round picks the Giants have had since 2002, when they took Matt Cain.
-- Matt Meyers

Paucity Of Position Players
1:18 p.m.:
No huge surprise in the ninth slot, as the Orioles take projected pick Bill Rowell. It has been ten years since the first high school positiion player went so low, when Eric Chavez was drafted tenth out of Mount Carmel (Calif.) High School. In no other draft year have a class of prep hitters fallen out of the top eight.
-- Bryan Smith

No High Schoolers In Top Five
1:11 p.m.:
This year's draft is the first time since 1992 that no high school player was taken in the top five picks. The first high schooler taken that year was Derek Jeter, at No. 6.

Last Second Top 10 Projection
12:57 p.m.:
Our last-second projection for the Top 10 . . .
1. KC--Luke Hochevar
2. Col--Greg Reynolds
3. TB--Evan Longoria
4. Pit--Brad Lincoln
5. Sea--Brandon Morrow
6. Det--Clayton Kershaw (but this is the first possible stop for Andrew Miller, too)
7. LAD--Bryan Morris
8. Cin--Drew Stubbs
9. Bal--Billy Rowell
10. SF--Daniel Bard
--Jim Callis

Another Trend To Watch
12:47 p.m.:
Just 11 times in the draft’s 41-year history has a high school righthander not gone in the top 10 picks, with the lowest ever selection coming in 1988 when the Brewers took Alex Fernandez 24th overall. Fernandez, who was the only prep righthander taken in the first that year, didn’t even sign.  In his latest mock draft, Jim Callis aligns Kyle Drabek with the Dodgers at No. 7, but the other three prep righties projected to go in the first round check in at No. 22 and later: Sean Black, Jeremy Jeffres and Colton Willems.
--Matt Eddy

Early Picks May Have Done Deals
12:46 p.m.:
A source familiar with the negotiations says the teams and the players that will be picks at Nos. 2-3-4 have agreed to financial parameters. The Rockies will give Stanford righthander Greg Reynolds $3.25 million; the Devil Rays will pay Long Beach State third baseman Evan Longoria $3 million; and the Pirates will dole out $2.75 million to Houston righthander Brad Lincoln.
--Jim Callis

Late Word From The Top
11:38 a.m.:
Multiple sources are confirming that the Royals, as Baseball America has projected, will take Fort Worth Cats righthander Luke Hochevar with the No. 1 choice at 1 p.m. ET. The Dodgers, who pick No. 7, are believed to be zeroing in on Motlow State (Tenn.) CC righthander Bryan Morris. It's possible Morris would be available when Los Angeles picks next at No. 26. But the Dodgers could lose him to the Braves at No. 24 or the Angels at No. 25, and don't want to risk it.
--Jim Callis

Stubbs Seems Out Of The Mix
11:12 a.m.:
Late word on the Royals' decision at No. 1 included speculation that incoming general manager Dayton Moore advocated taking Drew Stubbs rather than the pitchers the Royals were considering. If Stubbs goes No. 1, no one will be more surprised than Stubbs. A source close to the Texas outfielder said he had not heard from the Royals about possibly going 1/1.
-- John Manuel

A Trend To Watch
10:08 a.m.:
As we get ready for the start of the 2006 draft, here are some trends to watch for during the first round of the draft. Most notably, there is a chance that the record for most pitchers selected in the first round could fall today. The current record is 20 pitchers, set in 1999 and tied in 2001. After working the phones to the wee hours of the morning, Jim Callis' final mock draft projects that 21 pitchers will go in the first round.
-- J.J. Cooper