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2005 Early Draft Preview: First Round Projection
. . . and other tidbits

February 2, 2005

A CHANGE IN ORDER

The World Series champion Red Sox will forfeit their first-, second- and third-round draft picks in June for signing free agents Matt Clement, Edgar Renteria and David Wells this offseason, but they’ll still be the most active team in the early rounds.

Boston will have six of the first 59 picks, getting two picks apiece for losing Type A free agents Orlando Cabrera to the Angels, Derek Lowe to the Dodgers and Pedro Martinez to the Mets. The Cardinals and Marlins will also make six selections before the start of the third round. The Giants, meanwhile, won’t make their first selection until the fourth round (134th overall).

Teams will pick in descending order of 2004 record—without regard to league for the first time in draft history. In the past, selections alternated from one league to the other. By virtue of their .315 winning percentage, the Diamondbacks will pick first.

The order in the second half of the first round (picks 16-30) has been set as all Type A and B free agents who were offered salary arbitration have been signed. Compensation is offered to teams losing free agents in the form of draft picks.

Following is the order for this year’s first round, with compensation for free agents lost noted. The draft is scheduled for June 7-8.

1. Diamondbacks
2. Royals
3. Mariners
4. Nationals
5. Brewers
6. Blue Jays
7. Rockies
8. Devil Rays
9. Mets
10. Tigers
11. Pirates
12. Reds
13. Orioles
14. Indians
15. White Sox
16. Marlins
17. Yankees (a)
18. Padres
19. Rangers
20. Cubs
21. Athletics
22. Marlins (b)
23. Red Sox (c)
24. Astros
25. Twins
26. Red Sox (d)
27. Braves
28. Cardinals (e)
29. Marlins (f)
30. Cardinals

a Choice from Phillies for Type B free agent Jon Lieber
b Choice from Giants for Type A free agent Armando Benitez
c Choice from Angels for Type A free agent Orlando Cabrera
d Choice from Dodgers for Type A free agent Derek Lowe
e Choice from Red Sox for Type A free agent Edgar Renteria
f Choice from Yankees for Type A free agent Carl Pavano

PROJECTED FIRST ROUND

1.

Justin Upton, ss/of, Great Bridge HS, Chesapeake, Va.

Hyped as a future first-rounder since he was 13, he may be more talented than older brother B.J.

2.

Cameron Maybin, of, T.C. Roberson HS, Asheville, N.C.

BA Youth Player of Year led Cincinnati club to Connie Mack title, was compared to Ken Griffey Jr.

3.

Alex Gordon, 3b, U. of Nebraska

Three years after being passed over in draft, scouts now say his lefthanded bat is nation’s best

4.

Mike Pelfrey, rhp, Wichita State U.

Six-foot-7 righty primed to be eighth Wichita State pitcher to be drafted in first round in 25 years

5.

Luke Hochevar, rhp, U. of Tennessee

Overcame injuries last spring and pitched Team USA to ’04 World University championship

6.

Tyler Greene, ss, Georgia Tech

Braves ’02 second-rounder led Team USA in hitting in ’03, was Cape Cod’s top prospect in ’04

7.

Jeff Clement, c, U. of Southern California

All-time high school home run king (76 at Marshalltown, Iowa, High) is primed for breakout year

8.

Wade Townsend, rhp, Rice U.

Drafted eighth last year, his gamble to attend school, continue negotiations with Orioles failed

9.

Troy Tulowitzki, ss, Long Beach State U.

A steady defender and emerging hitter, he beat out Tyler Greene as Team USA’s starting shortstop

10.

Ryan Zimmerman, 3b, U. of Virginia

Power was only missing tool until last summer, but elevated stock by leading Team USA in homers

11.

Stephen Head, 1b/lhp, U. of Mississippi

Sweet-swinging lefthanded hitter will emerge as premier bat once he concentrates on one position

12.

John Mayberry Jr., 1b/of, Stanford U.

’02 Mariners first-rounder has the genes, athleticism and power potential to become premium talent

13.

Sean O’Sullivan, rhp/of, Valhalla HS, El Cajon, Calif.

He’s enjoyed more success with the bat to date, but scouts prefer his powerful arm, command

14.

Mark McCormick, rhp, Baylor U.

Hasn’t enjoyed much success in two college seasons, but scouts remain intrigued with his power stuff

15.

Justin Bristow, ss/rhp, Mills Godwin HS, Richmond, Va.

Possesses big bat and powerful arm, but lack of speed may push him to third base as a pro

16.

Craig Hansen, rhp, St. John’s U.

His ’04 Cape Cod League season (1-1, 0.00, 10 SV, 2 BB/41 SO) stamped him as a sure first-rounder

17.

Jordan Danks, of, Round Rock (Texas) HS

He’s bigger, more athletic and more powerful than older brother John, the ninth pick in the 2003 draft

18.

Zach Putnam, rhp, Pioneer HS, Ann Arbor, Mich.

A two-way star in high school, his greater upside is on the mound as fastball’s been clocked in mid-90s

19.

Taylor Teagarden, c, U. of Texas

Has just passable hitting skills, but his work behind the plate, take-charge ability are second to none

20.

Travis Buck, of, Arizona State U.

A solid all-around talent from a storied program, he’s projected to be the first college outfielder taken

21.

Brian Bogusevic, of/lhp, Tulane U.

Generated interest as both a power pitcher and power-hitting outfielder, but most scouts favor the bat

22.

Chris Volstad, rhp, Palm Beach Gardens (Fla.) HS

Six-foot-7 righthander is extremely polished for his size and consistently pumps out low-90s fastballs

23.

Andrew McCutchen, of, Fort Meade (Fla.) HS

Blazing speed is his primary tool but he also has good bat speed and a knack for putting ball in play

24.

Daniel Carte, of, Winthrop U.

He wasn’t considered a first-round talent until he tore up ’04 Cape Cod League with MVP season

25.

Brett Jacobson, rhp, Cactus Shadows HS, Cave Creek, Ariz.

Scouts intrigued by his size, arm strength; 6-foot-6 righty generates easy low-90s heat, low-80s slurve

26.

Austin Jackson, of, Ryan HS, Denton, Texas

Has been one of the best athletes in his age group since he was a pre-teen; offers five-tool potential

27.

Brandon Snyder, c/ss, Westfield HS, Centreville, Va.

He can hit and he’s one of the few players who is equally proficient behind plate, in middle infield

28.

Henry Sanchez, 1b, Mission Bay HS, San Diego

A monster at 6-foot-3 and 260 pounds, he can literally dent outfield walls, hit baseballs out of sight

29.

Cliff Pennington, ss, Texas A&M U.

A slick-fielding shortstop with a plus arm, he emerged as a first-round talent last summer on Cape Cod

30.

David Adams, 3b, Grandview Prep, Boca Raton, Fla.

He’s not overly athletic and doesn’t run that well, but few players can swing the bat with more authority

—Compiled by Allan Simpson


2006 SNEAK PEEK

Baseball America draft expert Allan Simpson takes a sneak peek at next year’s college and high school draft classes:

COLLEGE
1. Andrew Miller, lhp, North Carolina
2. Drew Stubbs, of, Texas
3. Daniel Bard, rhp, North Carolina
4. Dallas Buck, rhp, Oregon State
5. Ian Kennedy, rhp, Southern California
6. Jason Donald, ss, Arizona
7. Wade LeBlanc, lhp, Alabama
8. Blair Erickson, rhp, UC Irvine
9. Josh Morris, 1b, Georgia
10. Richie Lentz, rhp, Washington
11. Keith Weiser, lhp, Miami (Ohio)
12. Matt Antonelli, 3b, Wake Forest
HIGH SCHOOL
1. Kyle Drabek, rhp/ss, The Woodlands (Texas) HS
2. Kasey Kiker, lhp, Russell County HS, Seale, Ala.
3. Gavin Brooks, lhp, Rancho Buena Vista HS, Vista, Calif.
4. Chris Marrero, ss, Monsignor Pace HS, Opa Locka, Fla.
5. Chris Tillman, rhp, Fountain Valley (Calif.) HS
6. Aaron Miller, lhp, Channelview (Texas) HS
7. Nicholas Akins, ss, Los Angeles HS
8. Tony Delmonico, ss, Farragut HS, Knoxville
9. Jared Mitchell, of, Westgate HS, New Iberia, La.
10. Hank Conger, c/1b, Huntington Beach (Calif.) HS
11. Cory Rasmus, lhp, Russell County HS, Seale, Ala.
12. Brent Brewer, ss, Sandy Creek HS, Fairburn, Ga.


AND YOU THOUGHT HE ONLY
CONTROLLED THE FREE AGENT MARKET

While it remains a possibility that Florida State shortstop Stephen Drew and Long Beach State righthander Jered Weaver will remain unsigned and re-enter this year’s draft, they would officially qualify among the 10 longest holdouts in draft history if they do sign. With the recent signings of former Rice teammates Philip Humber and Jeff Niemann, the third and fourth picks overall last June, Drew (Diamondbacks) and Weaver (Angels) are the remaining first-round picks from the 2004 draft not to sign who can. Orioles’ first-rounder Wade Townsend returned to class and is ineligible to sign.

The following is a list of the 10 longest holdouts in draft history (top four rounds only) and the date they finally signed. It is worth noting that agent Scott Boras represented the five longest holdouts.

Year

Player, Club (Round)

Signing Date

1994

Jason Varitek, Mariners (1)

April 20, 1995

2003

Steven White, Yankees (4)

April 7, 2004

2002

Bobby Brownlie, Cubs (1)

March 5, 2003

2002

Trevor Hutchinson, Marlins (3)

Feb. 24, 2003

1998

Jeff Austin, Royals (1)

Feb. 20, 1999

2004

Jeff Niemann, Devil Rays (1)

Jan. 20, 2005

2004

Philip Humber, Mets (1)

Jan. 11, 2005

1998

Kip Wells, White Sox (1)

Dec. 23, 1998

1997

Matt Anderson, Tigers (1)

Dec. 23, 1997

2002

Mark Schramek, Reds (1)

Dec. 18, 2002

TOP 25 JUCOS

Here’s how Baseball America’s Allan Simpson sees the nation’s top 25 junior college prospects for the 2005 draft. For players that were drafted in 2004 and remain under control, the team that drafted them (and the round) is noted. Such players will be eligible to sign after their 2005 season is complete until the closed period—a week before the draft. They will re-enter this year’s draft if they don’t sign.

1. Stephen Marek, rhp
San Jacinto (Texas)

Angels (40)

2. Omar Aguilar, rhp
Merced (Calif.)

Giants (8)

3. Bryant Beaver, ss/rhp
Seminole State (Okla.)

4. Bobby Mosebach, rhp/of
Hillsborough (Fla.)

Nationals (12)

5. Eric Krebs, rhp
Alvin (Texas)

Royals (36)

6. David Hernandez, rhp
Cosumnes River (Calif.)

D’backs (34)

7. Jesse Litsch, rhp
South Florida

Blue Jays (24)

8. Shawn Olsen, rhp
Southern Nevada

9. Clay Buchholz, of/rhp
Angelina (Texas)

10. Kenny Maiques, rhp
Rio Hondo (Calif.)

11. *Brad Clapp, rhp
Bellevue (Wash.)

Pirates (19)

12. Deunte Heath, rhp
Lake City (Fla.)

Devil Rays (25)

13. *Steve Marquardt, ss/rhp
Columbia Basin (Wash.)

14. David Huff, lhp
Cypress (Calif.)

15. *Rene Garcia, rhp
South Mountain (Ariz.)

Rockies (20)

16. Brett Zamzow, rhp
Navarro (Texas)

Rangers (28)

17. Jake Renshaw, rhp
Ventura (Calif.)

Red Sox (26)

18. Andy Underwood, rhp
Fresno

Royals (21)

19. Nick Montgomery, rhp/1b
Young Harris (Ga.)

20. *Dominick Foster, of/rhp
Fresno

Rockies (17)

21. Jud Norton, rhp
Manatee (Fla.)

Braves (25)

22. Todd Redmomd, rhp
St. Petersburg (Fla.)

Pirates (39)

23. Matt Montgomery, rhp
Okaloosa-Walton (Fla.)

Padres (14)

24. Patrick Caldwell, lhp/1b
Yavapai (Ariz.)

Yankees (22)

25. Gilbert De la Vara, lhp
Pima (Ariz.)

Royals (15)

*Freshman