Houston Astros

Players signed indicated in Bold

Round Overall Player Position School State Bonus
1 8 Delino DeShields Jr. 2B Woodward Academy, College Park, Ga. Ga. $2,150,000
In 2005, the most recent year Baseball America conducted its Baseball for the Ages survey, DeShields ranked as the nation's top 12-year-old, beating out Bryce Harper and A.J. Cole, among others. He had just finished seventh grade. The son of the former big leaguer and 1987 first-round pick of the same name, DeShields has had an up-and-down high school career that included a modest showing at the East Coast Pro Showcase last summer. His loud tools have helped him leap past his peers and jumped him, for some scouts, to the top of a deep crop of Georgia prep talent. His best tool is his explosive speed, which has jumped up a grade to earn 80s on the 20-80 scale. Like many big league progeny, DeShields doesn't play with a ton of energy, and he got off to a slow start, which scared off some clubs. When the weather heated up, DeShields' bat did likewise. He showcased electric bat speed and present strength, leading to projections of average power in his future. His swing needs some fine-tuning and his defense in center field is raw. He has enough arm for center, though it's below-average. Some scouts also had makeup concerns after DeShields changed his mind about his college choice, eventually settling on Louisiana State.
1 19 Mike Foltynewicz RHP Minooka (Ill.) Community HS Ill. $1,305,000
Foltynewicz is far and away the best pitching prospect in the Upper Midwest. He opened eyes by sitting at 91-94 mph and touching 96 with his fastball at a preseason showcase in February, and he has shown similar velocity throughout the spring. With his 6-foot-4, 190-pound frame, strength and arm speed, it's easy to project him regularly throwing in the mid-90s down the road. He already has an advanced changeup for a high school pitcher, as it features good sink and could become a plus pitch. He doesn't consistently stay on top of his breaking pitches, though he was doing a better job later in the spring. He throws both a curveball and a slider, and he'd be best served by focusing on improving his slider. No Illinois high school pitcher has gone in the first round since the White Sox selected Kris Honel in 2001, but a team that believes Foltynewicz can refine a breaking ball could be tempted to pick him that high. He'll pitch at Texas if he doesn't turn pro.
1s 33 Mike Kvasnicka 3B/C Minnesota Minn. $936,000
After catching sparingly in his first two seasons at Minnesota, Kvasnicka has seen semi-regular action behind the plate this spring while senior Kyle Knudson has recovered from offseason labrum surgery on both hips. Kvasnicka already was an attractive draft prospect as a 6-foot-2, 210-pound switch-hitter with a balanced stroke, good power potential and strike-zone discipline. Now his stock has jumped with the possibility that he could be a catcher rather than a right fielder. He has solid arm strength and accuracy, and he has the athleticism, hands and work ethic to become an average receiver. While he might have been a fourth-round pick as an outfielder, he now figures to go in the first two rounds as a catcher. If he winds up moving back to the outfield, he still has enough bat to reach the big leagues. Kvasnicka's father Jay was a Twins eighth-round pick in 1988--Minnesota drafted Mike in the 31st round out of high school--and reached Triple-A.
2 58 Vince Velasquez RHP Garey HS, Pomona, Calif. Calif. $655,830
Doctors diagnosed a stress fracture and a ligament strain in Vincent Velasquez's right elbow in January 2009, so his arm was placed in a cast for six weeks and he then went on a lengthy rehab program. He played shortstop and the outfield and even tried throwing lefthanded, but he didn't pitch last season. His first serious return to the mound was at MLB's preseason showcase in February, and he was the star of the event with a sensational one-inning stint. He fired a 93 mph fastball and added a wicked curveball and drop-dead changeup. The 6-foot-3, 180-pounder's outings during the spring were uneven, to put it mildly, and he was dreadful in an early season start in front of 40 scouts. Velasquez is a legitimate two-way player and could also serve as a switch-hitting infielder at Cal State Fullerton if he doesn't sign. While his actions and arm are impressive on the left side of the infield, his range, speed and bat are not early-round material. Velasquez exhibits a loose, angular and projectable build, a fluid delivery and tremendous stuff when he's on. To sign him away from Fullerton, however, scouts will need to be convinced that Velasquez has completely committed to pitching.
3 90 Austin Wates 2B Virginia Tech Va. $550,000
Scouts have had a hard time pinning down Wates this season because he profiles as a center fielder but plays right and first base for the Hokies. Ranked as the No. 15 prospect in the Cape last summer, Wates is a good athlete with a good track record of hitting for average. He has a medium-sized frame at 6-foot-1, 180 pounds and is an above-average runner. His arm is below-average but playable in center. He has below-average power as well, but it's not part of his game. Scouts universally describe his swing as unorthodox. It's not the typical short, flat path that you find in pure hitters and has a little bit of loop to it. Even so, he manages to consistently put the barrel on balls and does a good job working deep counts. Through 178 at-bats this spring, Wates was hitting .382/484/.624 with 25 extra-base hits and 15 stolen bases. He walked (29) more than he struck out (24) and leads Virginia Tech in runs with 51.
4 123 Bobby Doran RHP Texas Tech Texas $236,700
Pitching in the shadow of Chad Bettis at Texas Tech, Doran has been the Red Raiders' best starting pitcher this spring. After going winless in the first half of the season, he won five of his next six starts, highlighted by a 16-strikeout effort against Missouri. His stuff has kicked up a notch, matching what he showed last summer when he ranked as the top pitching prospect in the Jayhawk League. Not only is he pitching at 90-92 mph and topping out at 94, but he's also commanding his fastball to both sides of the plate. He also has a hard 77-78 mph curveball with late break, as well as a serviceable changeup. He's athletic for a 6-foot-6, 240-pounder, and his arm works easily, enabling him to throw strikes. He spent the first two years of his college career at Seward County (Kan.) CC, where the Pirates drafted him in the 36th round last year. He'll get picked more than 30 rounds earlier this time around.
5 153 Ben Heath C Penn State Pa. $160,000
Heath was limited by a pulled quad muscle as a sophomore in 2009 and split time even when healthy, but he broke out as a junior, slugging 19 home runs to break Penn State's 32-year-old school record. He worked hard in the offseason to improve his flexibility, which has loosened up his swing and made him more agile behind the plate. No longer muscle-bound, Heath also improved his arm strength dramatically, to the point that it's now average. A few scouts say Heath's feet and receiving skills will eventually force him to move from behind the plate, but the consensus is that he can be an average defensive catcher with work. Offensively, Heath has an unorthodox set-up with a lot of pre-pitch waggle, but he quiets down just before his stride and gets his hands in good position to hit. He has a long, high finish, but his swing is actually compact through the zone. He'll have his share of strikeouts in pro ball and projects as a fringe-average hitter, but his above-average raw power is usable in games. Most scouts peg him as an eighth- to 10th-round talent, but he could go higher given the perennial demand for catching.
6 183 Adam Plutko RHP Glendora (Calif.) HS Calif.
Since his emergence as a top prospect two years ago, Plutko had bedeviled scouts with his inconsistent performances. He wavers from terrific to downright pedestrian, with a mid-80s fastball and bland secondary stuff. His best performance may have been at last year's Area Code Games, where he touched 93 mph and snapped off a fiendish curveball. The 6-foot-2, 180-pound Plutko has been effective but not overwhelming this spring, and his fastball has ranged from 87-91 mph, with a curve, changeup and slider. His secondary offerings are decent, but will require a substantial amount of refinement to reach major league average. His fastball is straight and strays up in the strike zone too often, and he'll need more movement to be effective against advanced hitters. On his best days, Plutko flashes the stuff of a premium pick, but those days don't happen quite often enough. He is committed to UCLA, and if he doesn't sign a pro contract, Plutko should become a weekend starter immediately and could move into the top two rounds in 2013.
7 213 Roberto Pena C Eloisa Pascual HS, Caguas, P.R. P.R. $150,000
Puerto Rico is known for its long lineage of catching talent, and Pena is the best catcher this year. A converted shortstop, he has been behind the dish for two years now and is already an advanced defender. He can really catch and throw with quick feet, a smooth transfer and above-average pop times down to second base. Pena's father Bert spent six seasons in the big leagues with the Astros as a teammate of Dickie Thon (whose son is the island's top prospect this year). Another switch-hitter, Pena is better from the right side, but some scouts say he won't hit enough to be a regular. His defensive skills mean he could at least be a backup. He plays hard, shows good leadership and enjoys playing. Pena profiles as a seventh-to-10th-rounder on talent, but he could go higher because of his defensive skills, signability and position scarcity.
8 243 Jake Buchanan RHP North Carolina State N.C. $120,000
The Wolfpack's top draftee likely will be righthander Buchanan, who was outstanding in the Cape Cod League last summer, going 3-1, 0.84 with just six walks in 43 innings. He's a pitchability righthander and doesn't have a great pro body at 6 feet, 221 pounds. He commands his fastball well at average velocity, and he ran it up to 93 mph against Georgia Tech in a heavily scouted start against Deck McGuire.
9 273 Tommy Shirley LHP Xavier Ohio $100,000
Tommy Shirley went 2-7, 7.60 in his first two seasons before emerging this spring as an intriguing lefthander in a draft short on quality southpaws. He throws a heavy 88-91 mph fastball that tops out at 93, using his 6-foot-5, 220-pound frame to leverage his heater down in the zone. He works both sides of the plate with his fastball and isn't afraid to challenge righthanders on the inner half. He has a rough finish to his delivery, landing on a stiff front leg, which costs him feel for his secondary pitches. He's trying to figure out a slider but is a one-pitch pitcher for now. His size and arm strength could get him into the first 10 rounds.
10 303 Evan Grills LHP Sinclair SS, Whitby, Ont. Ontario $150,000
Teams that are hung up on velocity might pass on lefthander Grills, and they'd miss a pitcher who makes up for his average velocity with savvy and a track record of winning. Grills has been pitching with Canada's national teams since he was 14 and thrives in big situations. He throws his fastball in the 87-89 mph range and flashes 90s, though he's touched higher in the past. He mixes in a two-seamer with good life, an average curveball, a below-average slider and a changeup. Grills has a tall, loose and athletic body. His delivery isn't picture-perfect, and he sometimes falls off the mound a la Mitch Williams. He still throws all his pitches for strikes, attacks hitters and breaks a lot of bats. He's committed to San Jacinto (Texas) JC.
11 333 Kyle Redinger 3B Cedar Crest HS, Lebanon, Pa. Pa.
Redinger, a Penn State signee, has a lanky 6-foot-3, 190-pound frame with plenty of power potential and athleticism, but scouts agreed that he needs to develop his overall game, which is raw. He could also help the Nittany Lions on the mound.
12 363 Andrew Robinson RHP Georgia Tech Ga.
Robinson served as Tech's closer when Jacob was out. He was 4-0, 2.45 with seven saves, though he had a .261 opponent average. His 90-92 mph fastball and slider have been sharper this season. He also has a decent changeup and has proven resilient, working twice on weekends if needed. He should get pick in the 10th-20th round.
13 393 Davis Duren 2B Oklahoma State Okla.
14 423 Jordan Scott OF Riverside HS, Greer, S.C. S.C. $150,000
15 453 Jamaine Cotton RHP Western Oklahoma State JC Okla.
16 483 Chris Wallace C Houston Texas
17 513 Tyler Burnett 3B Middle Tennessee State Tenn.
18 543 Josh Magee OF Hoover (Ala.) HS Ala. $100,000
19 573 JaCoby Jones SS Richton (Miss.) HS Miss.
Jones led his Richton High team to the Mississippi 2-A championship game, playing shortstop and pitching. His Louisiana State commitment, and the fact he's being advised by the Boras Corp., had many scouts going in to see him once or twice but not following him closely during the spring. For those still interested, Jones showed excellent tools, including the athleticism, arm strength and infield actions to warrant a long look at shortstop at the pro level. Any team willing to buy him out of LSU would do so believing Jones is a shortstop, not a third baseman. Some scouts have questioned his bat, as he has more of a metal-bat swing with low hands in his set-up and no real load in his swing. He does have bat speed and some strength, and with adjustments he should be able to drive the ball consistently with wood. He's an average runner out of the box and has turned in above-average 6.6-second 60 times in the past. In some ways, Jones is a better prospect than David Renfroe, the Red Sox' 2009 third-round pick who signed for $1.4 million, as his arm and athletic ability are better. His price tag also is said to be higher. On talent alone, Jones factors into the second- to fourth-round range.
20 603 Daniel Adamson OF Jacksonville State Ala.
21 633 Aaron Blair RHP Spring Valley HS, Las Vegas Nev.
22 663 Zach Dygert C Ball State Ind.
23 693 Adam Bailey OF Nebraska Neb.
Adam Bailey began his college career as a pitcher at Arizona State and played both ways at South Mountain (Ariz.) CC before becoming predominantly an outfielder at Nebraska. A 6-foot-1, 201-pounder, he offers bat speed and lefthanded power. He led the Cornhuskers with 12 homers in 2009 and 18 this spring, though he sometimes struggles against good velocity. Bailey has arm strength, but his lack of speed likely will relegate him to left field as a pro.
24 723 Adam Champion LHP Arkansas-Little Rock Ark.
Lefthander Adam Champion, a 23rd-round pick by the Giants in 2009, is another senior sign. Though he's 6-foot-7 and 235 pounds, he relies more on deception, usually working from 88-91. He's mostly a one-pitch pitcher with command and delivery issues, but he's a big southpaw who has touched 93 mph.
25 753 Rodney Quintero RHP Chipola (Fla.) JC Fla. $150,000
Chipola's top arm is now Cuban defector Quintero, a freshman who is raw but has intriguing arm strength, touching the mid-90s with his fastball.
26 783 Alex Sogard LHP North Carolina State N.C.
Senior lefty Sogard came on strong late in the year as he got more distance from offseason shoulder surgery, and he wound up starting twice in the ACC tournament. He was at his best in a late-season start against High Point, hitting 94 mph and showing a power curveball. Sogard went just 2-2, 5.26 and got hammered early, and he's a fifth-year senior who's already 22.
27 813 Jacke Healey SS Youngstown State Ohio
28 843 Jason Chowning RHP Oklahoma Okla.
29 873 Broughan Jantz OF Nevada Union HS, Nevada City, Calif. Calif.
30 903 Kellen Kiilsgaard OF Stanford Calif.
Stanford outfielder Kiilsgaard had a good sophomore year (.313/.411/.527, 9 HR, 46 RBI) but slumped early and was benched this spring after going 4-for-24. Kiilsgaard is a big, physical lefthanded hitter with home run power and a chance to be an average left fielder. An organization will look to buy low on him.
31 933 Travis Blankenship LHP Kansas Kan.
32 963 Austin Chrismon RHP Menchville HS, Newport News, Va. Va.
Righthander Chrismon has had an outstanding career for Menchville--he hadn't lost a game until April 2010--but he hasn't thrown as well as scouts had hoped this season, and some questioned his conditioning. One scout saw him 84-87 mph with his fastball this spring, though he had seen better in the past. He is committed to East Carolina.
33 993 Michael Ness RHP Duke N.C.
34 1023 Ryan Cole RHP St. John's N.Y.
35 1053 Esteban Gomez 1B Bishop Ford Central Catholic HS, Brooklyn N.Y.
Gomez will head to San Jacinto (Texas) JC. Scouts question Gomez's defensive profile, but he shed 15 pounds in the offseason in an attempt to approve his agility and defense at first. His 6-foot-1, 190-pound frame offers power potential, but he stands out most for his smooth line-drive swing from the left side. He'll need to develop more power to play first base in pro ball.
36 1083 Ryan Halstead RHP Los Osos HS, Rancho Cucamonga, Calif. Calif.
37 1113 Brian Streilein RHP Villanova Pa.
38 1143 Ryan Ford 1B Plano (Texas) West HS Texas
39 1173 Krishawn Holley RHP Mid-Carolina HS, Prosperity, S.C. S.C.
40 1203 Jeremiah Meiners LHP Francis Marion (S.C.) S.C.
41 1233 Bryce Lane OF Gulf Coast (Fla.) JC Fla.
42 1263 Paul Gerrish RHP Texas Christian Texas
43 1293 DeMarcus Henderson SS Wayne County HS, Waynesboro, Miss. Miss.
A Mississippi State recruit, he's athletic and was the starting quarterback on a 5-A state championship football team. Henderson has present strength and speed that rates 60 on the 20-80 scale. His defensive tools include an average arm and good lateral movement, though he lacks consistency on routine plays. He likely fits better at second base down the road, though he would have a chance to start at short at Mississippi State. Henderson has some hitting ability, but breaking balls will give him trouble out of the box in pro ball.
44 1323 Alexis Garza RHP McAllen (Texas) HS Texas
45 1353 Ian Vazquez SS Perkiomen HS, Pennsburg, Pa. Pa.
46 1383 Lawrence Pardo LHP Columbus HS, Miami Fla.
47 1413 Joe Carcone SS New Hartford (N.Y.) HS N.Y.
48 1443 T.J. Pecoraro RHP Half Hollow Hills West HS, Dix Hills, N.Y. N.Y.
Pecoraro, a righthander is just 6 feet, 155 pounds, but he has a quick arm and advanced feel for pitching. He flashed 93-94 mph heat at the Area Code Games last summer but has worked in the 86-91 mph range this spring. His curveball and changeup can be inconsistent, but both project as average offerings, and he has good command down in the strike zone. Durability is a question and leads some scouts to project Pecoraro as a middle reliever, but he is wiry strong. Pecoraro considered attending San Jacinto (Texas) JC to be eligible for the draft again in 2011, but he will instead honor his commitment to Vanderbilt.
49 1473 Kenny Diaz C Angel David HS, San Juan, P.R. P.R.
50 1503 David Donald OF Mann HS, Greenville, S.C. S.C.
Outfielder David Donald is a standout athlete who also had a strong prep football career and is still developing his baseball skills. He has raw bat speed, above-average speed and strength in his 5-foot-11, 175-pound frame. A center fielder, he has poor instincts across the board, and his lack of pitch recognition hinders his ability to make contact. He was considered an easy sign who will appeal to organizations that like to develop toolsy players. Initially committed to College of Charleston, he fell back to Tallahassee (Fla.) CC.