Prospect Dream Draft: The First Five Rounds

See also: Team

See also: Dream Draft Pick By Pick

See also: Vote On
Your Favorite Dream Draft

1 1 Glassey Jason Heyward OF ATL
It wasn’t easy to leave Strasburg on the board, but given a choice between a premium position player and a premium pitcher, I felt like going with the everyday guy was the right choice.
1 2 Lingo Stephen Strasburg RHP WAS
An ideal situation; let Conor make the tough decision and take the great player who’s left.
1 3 Leventhal Mike Stanton OF FLA
Unlike the first two picks, there was no obvious candidate at No. 3. I was tempted to tab the best pitcher on the board (Matusz), but decided Stanton’s offensive potential was too much to pass up.
1 4 Cooper Jesus Montero C NYY
Debated between Montero and Jennings, but opted for Montero because my philosophy was to go with the best bat when possible.
1 5 Eddy Desmond Jennings OF TB
Franchise center fielder with power, speed, on-base skills and defense—a fine way to launch any farm system, real or pretend.
1 6 Fitt Brian Matusz LHP BAL
I would have taken Matusz as high as No. 3; he’s a sure-fire top-of-the-rotation starter with terrific stuff, command, makeup and mechanics.
1 7 Badler Buster Posey C SF
I had my eye on Jennings until Eddy took him; I’ll settle for a big league-ready catcher who has a chance to post .400+ OBPs.
1 8 Callis Pedro Alvarez 3B PIT
My pipe dream coming into the draft with the No. 8 pick was Montero, but that wasn’t going to happen. I had Alvarez fifth on my draft board.
1 9 Rode Carlos Santana C CLE
A switch-hitting catcher with power and good defense? Yes please. I was a little surprised I had the opportunity to get him at No. 9.
1 10 Shonerd Neftali Feliz RHP TEX
I had Feliz pegged as the No. 2 pitcher on my board, so I was thrilled to get him at 10th overall. I feel he’ll be a starter and that arm is too electric to pass up.
1 11 Manuel Madison Bumgarner LHP SF
He’s the blueprint of the kind of pitcher I love—physical, lefthanded, athletic, commands the fastball. Everything else will flow from there, and I’m not worried about the ’09 velocity loss.
2 12 Manuel Domonic Brown OF PHI
He’s still a bit raw, but Brown has all the tools and some advanced hitting ability. He has a chance to be a superstar and should at least be a solid-average big leaguer.
2 13 Shonerd Dustin Ackley 2B/OF SEA
With Feliz on board, I wanted to get a premium bat and Ackley was the best available. I looked at Justin Smoak here, but Ackley’s versatility helped tip the scales in his favor.
2 14 Rode Starlin Castro SS CHC
I believe in good teams having strength up the middle so I didn’t want to wait around too long before grabbing a viable shortstop option.
2 15 Callis Alcides Escobar SS MIL
I couldn’t believe I almost got Ackley, whom I coveted. After touting Castro all offseason, he goes right in front of me. I almost took Smoak but chose a stud up-the-middle player instead.
2 16 Badler Martin Perez LHP TEX
After Strasburg, Perez and Matusz are the two best pitching prospects in baseball.
2 17 Fitt Justin Smoak 1B TEX
I was shocked—and thrilled—to get a low-risk, high-reward, switch-hitting slugger at No. 17. This was the best-case scenario for my draft.
2 18 Eddy Logan Morrison 1B FLA
Fitt took the guesswork out of this selection when he took Smoak one pick before, but Morrison’s offensive profile represents more than consolation prize.
2 19 Cooper Casey Kelly RHP BOS
One of the best young starting pitching prospects around who has a fall-back position of being a solid SS prospect.
2 20 Leventhal Lonnie Chisenhall 3B CLE
My pre-draft strategy of loading up on pitching was sabotaged again when the smooth lefthanded-hitting third baseman was available this late.
2 21 Lingo Chris Carter 1B/OF OAK
I’m not sure where he’s going to play, but I know Carter is going to hit.
2 22 Glassey Tyler Matzek LHP COL
Matzek was the guy I was hoping to land at 22 and made choosing Heyward over Strasburg a little easier. He has very rare arm strength for a lefthander and some teams felt he was the second-best pitcher in last year’s draft. Rode punched me in the arm after I made this pick.
3 23 Manuel Jeremy Hellickson RHP TB
I had Hellickson No. 15 in my personal top 50 and I’m extremely pleased to get him this low. Another fastball-command guy with advanced pitchability and excellent secondary stuff, he’s a great complement to Bumgarner.
3 24 Shonerd Kyle Drabek RHP TOR
I’d projected Drabek to go higher, so I feel pretty good about getting him here. I might’ve gone for Hellickson if he had been available, but Manuel made it academic.
3 25 Rode Ryan Westmoreland OF BOS
Another up-the-middle guy, I felt Westmoreland was the best guy on the board and even got a reaction out of Callis. And Matzek wasn’t available…
3 26 Callis Aaron Hicks OF MIN
I would have taken Westmoreland, but I can’t complain about getting a slightly more proven commodity and antoher stud athlete in Hicks. I couldn’t quite pull the trigger on Aroldis Chapman.
3 27 Badler Michael Taylor OF OAK
I have Taylor as one of the top 10 position prospects in baseball, a premium talent ready to contribute immediately.
3 28 Fitt Jacob Turner RHP DET
He’s not as safe as my first two picks, but Turner’s upside is monstrous, and he’s polished for a prep product with no pro experience. Smooth mechanics bode well for his future.
3 29 Eddy Christian Friedrich LHP COL
No pitcher is without warts at this point in the draft, but if Friedrich steps up his fastball command to pair with his plus curve and slider, then he could be a Matusz clone.
3 30 Cooper Aroldis Chapman LHP CIN
He may be riskier than some other picks around here, but his stuff can be as good as anyone not named Strasburg.
3 31 Leventhal Wade Davis RHP TB
I mistakenly tried to draft Hellickson here, but was plenty pleased to land his major league-ready teammate.
3 32 Lingo Jason Castro C HOU
I think this guy gets underrated because he doesn’t have one overwhelming tool, but I’m perfectly happy to have a guy who will be a solid big league catcher for years.
3 33 Glassey Brett Wallace 3B/1B TOR
He may have questions defensively, but there’s no question that he can hit. He’s a polished on-base machine that is nearly ready to hit in the middle of a big league lineup.
4 34 Glassey Mike Leake RHP CIN
I may have reached a little for Leake, but with the back-to-back picks, I had to grab guys I really wanted. I love Leake’s combination of stuff, command and makeup. He’s a safe bet to make it to the big leagues quickly and has No. 2 upside.
4 35 Lingo Jared Mitchell OF CWS
Got some athleticism and a guy who has performed in spite of also playing college football.
4 36 Leventhal Casey Crosby LHP DET
I could have taken Montgomery here (see below), but I think Crosby’s value will only rise with another full season to develop secondary pitches that will complement a 92-95 mph fastball.
4 37 Cooper Mike Montgomery LHP KC
A lefty with a mid-90s fastball, a feel for pitching, control and secondary stuff? There’s a whole lot to like there.
4 38 Eddy James Darnell 3B SD
Love the athleticism, the makeup, the power, the batting eye . . . so what if he slides down the defensive spectrum to a corner outfield post?
4 39 Fitt Derek Norris C WAS
He’s got a real chance to stay behind the plate, but even if he doesn’t, Norris will be a quality power hitter with a patient approach.
4 40 Badler Jenrry Mejia RHP NYM
Mejia’s an unusual prospect, but he has No. 1 starter potential with a ridiculous fastball to blow by hitters or induce grounders.
4 41 Callis Kyle Gibson RHP MIN
Gibson has been a personal favorite of mine since he was an Indiana high schooler, so I don’t think I surprised anyone with this pick.
4 42 Rode Freddie Freeman 1B ATL
Often in the shadow of Heyward, Freeman gives me a high upside bat for the middle of a lineup.
4 43 Shonerd Josh Bell 3B BAL
Bell’s not far from being big league ready, and I’m looking for a power bat here, so he fits the bill nicely.
4 44 Manuel Nick Hagadone LHP CLE
I believe in the power arm, the comeback from Tommy John surgery and think he’s got a better-than-even chance to remain a starter. He’s an impact arm in any role.
5 45 Manuel Matt Moore LHP TB
I’ve liked this big-armed lefthander with terrific strikeout numbers since writing him up as New Mexico’s top draft prospect in 2007.
5 46 Shonerd Aaron Crow RHP KC
Maybe he got a bit lost in the shuffle with that detour to indy ball, but with two plus pitches and command, it’s easy to remember why Crow was the top college righthander in the 2008 draft with the potential to move quickly.
5 47 Rode Shelby Miller RHP STL
I didn’t mean to take this long to go for a front of the rotation arm, but was excited to have a shot at a fireballer like Miller.
5 48 Callis Dee Gordon SS LAD
I was hoping Crow would get back to me, but I’ll gladly take the most athletic shortstop in the minors. He’ll get better with experience.
5 49 Badler Jarrod Parker RHP ARI
Yeah, the Tommy John surgery is a concern, but his arm action is clean, he’s athletic and if he’s healthy, he has the best stuff in baseball of any prospect whose surname isn’t Strasburg.
5 50 Fitt Todd Frazier OF/2B/3B CIN
Frazier can really hit, and he’s a gamer. No matter what position he lands at, he’ll produce in the majors for a long time—and soon.
5 51 Eddy Austin Jackson OF DET
Jackson’s natural athleticism will enable him to excel in the batter’s box . . . in time. His turn in the IL last year bears a passing resemblance to Andrew McCutchen, circa 2008.
5 52 Cooper Wilson Ramos C MIN
I think Ramos is one of the better sleepers out there, but he gets lost because of the large number of solid catching prospects. As an above-average catcher with a solid bat, he’s very interesting prospect.
5 53 Leventhal Julio Teheran RHP ATL
A car full of BA editors returned from Burlington last summer raving about Teheran after seeing him pitch, so I was thrilled to get the Appy League’s top prospect late in the fifth round.
5 54 Lingo Tyler Flowers C CWS
Not worried about position in this draft, so I took another catcher. He may have to move eventually, but his bat should play anywhere.
5 55 Glassey Michael Saunders OF SEA
Saunders fell a little bit probably because of his underwhelming big league debut, but this is a guy that hit .310/.378/.544 in Tacoma and was our No. 25 prospect mid-season. I couldn’t pass that up.