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2005 Draft Report Cards: Overall Rankings

By Jim Callis
November 4, 2005


2005 Draft Report Cards:
• Monday 10/31: Arizona Diamondbacks - Chicago White Sox
• Tuesday 11/1: Cincinnati Reds - Houston Astros
• Wednesday 11/2:    Kansas City Royals - New York Mets
• Thursday 11/3: New York Yankees - San Diego Padres
• Friday 11/4: San Francisco Giants - Washington Nationals
• Friday 11/4: Overall Rankings and Draft All-Stars

For most categories, only players who have signed are eligible. The exceptions are Most Intriguing Background and The One Who Got Away. Because first-round picks Justin Upton (No. 1, Diamondbacks) and Mike Pelfrey (No. 9, Mets) are still negotiating and expected to sign, we did consider them in other categories. Best Late-Round Pick is limited to players selected in the 10th round or later.

We don't slap letter grades on drafts because it's just way too soon to evaluate them with that much precision. But we do feel confident enough to rank the players in the overview below. For much more detailed information by club, please see the other five pages. Numbers in parentheses indicate the round in which a player was drafted.

BEST DRAFT
1. Marlins
2. Red Sox
3. Diamondbacks
4. Cardinals
5. Athletics

BEST PRO DEBUT

College Players
1. Ryan Zimmerman, 3b, Nationals (1)
2. Ryan Braun, 3b, Brewers (1)
3. Nolan Reimold, of, Orioles (2)
4. Kevin Slowey, rhp, Twins (2)
5. Nick Stavinoha, of, Cardinals (7)

Junior College Players
1. Josh Flores, of, Astros (4)
2. Aaron Cunningham, of, White Sox (6)
3. Matt Gamel, 3b, Brewers (4)
4. Clay Buchholz, rhp, Red Sox (1)
5. Donald Veal, lhp, Cubs (2)

High School Players
1. Jeff Bianchi, ss, Royals (2)
2. Chris Volstad, rhp, Marlins (1)
3. Andrew McCutchen, of, Pirates (1)
4. Travis Wood, lhp, Reds (2)
5. Tommy Mendoza, rhp, Angels (5)

Second-Day Picks (Rounds 19-50)
1. Kenny Holmberg, 2b, Brewers (22)
2. Mike Madsen, rhp, Athletics (21)
3. Jeff Natale, 2b, Red Sox (32)
4. Jeff Hahn, rhp, Tigers (35)
5. Brad Kilby, lhp, Athletics (29)

BEST ATHLETE
1. Justin Upton, ss, Diamondbacks (1)
2. Cameron Maybin, of, Tigers (1)
3. C.J. Henry, ss, Yankees (1)
4. Austin Jackson, of, Yankees (8)
5. Andrew McCutchen, of, Pirates (1)

BEST PURE HITTER
1. Justin Upton, ss, Diamondbacks (1)
2. Alex Gordon, 3b, Royals (1)
3. Ryan Braun, 3b, Brewers (1)
4. Ryan Zimmerman, 3b, Nationals (1)
5. Travis Buck, of, Athletics (1)

BEST RAW POWER
1. Henry Sanchez, 1b, Twins (1)
2. Jeff Clement, c, Mariners (1)
3. Alex Gordon, 3b, Royals (1)
4. John Mayberry Jr., of, Rangers (1)
5. Ryan Braun, 3b, Brewers (1)

FASTEST RUNNER
1. Justin Upton, ss, Diamondbacks (1)
2. Trayvon Robinson, of, Dodgers (10)
3. Andrew McCutchen, of, Pirates (1)
4. Josh Flores, of, Astros (4)
5. Brett Gardner, of, Yankees (3)

BEST DEFENSIVE PLAYER
1. Ryan Zimmerman, 3b, Nationals (1)
2. Taylor Teagarden, c, Rangers (3)
3. David Maroul, ss, Giants (23)
4. Cliff Pennington, ss, Athletics (1)
5. Yunel Escobar, ss, Braves (2)

BEST FASTBALL
1. Craig Italiano, rhp, Athletics (2)
2. Mark McCormick, rhp, Cardinals (1)
3. Mark Pawelek, lhp, Cubs (1)
4. Mike Pelfrey, rhp, Mets (1)
5. Nick Webber, rhp, Cardinals (2)

BEST BREAKING BALL
1. Craig Hansen, rhp, Red Sox (1)
2. Joey Devine, rhp, Braves (1)
3. Chaz Roe, rhp, Rockies (1)
4. Matt Torra, rhp, Diamondbacks (1)
5. Michael Bowden, rhp, Red Sox (1)

MOST INTRIGUING BACKGROUND

Baseball Relative Division
1. Koby Clemens, 3b, Astros (8)
2. Justin Upton, ss, Diamondbacks (1)
3. John Mayberry Jr., of, Rangers (1)
4. Wilfrido Pujols, of, Cardinals (6)
5. Scott Van Slyke, of, Dodgers (15)
and A.J. Van Slyke, of, Cardinals (23)

Non-Baseball Relative Division
1. Trevor Bell, rhp, Angels (1)
2. Josh Outman, lhp, Phillies (10)
3. Derek Mitchell, ss, Phillies (23)
4. Matt Cunningham, of, Astros (36)
5. Brandon Stricklen, rhp, Astros (42)

CLOSEST TO THE MAJORS

College Players
1. Joey Devine, rhp, Braves (1)
2. Ryan Zimmerman, 3b, Nationals (1)
3. Craig Hansen, rhp, Red Sox (1)
4. Alex Gordon, 3b, Royals (1)
5. Cesar Carrillo, rhp, Padres (1)

High School Players
1. Justin Upton, ss, Diamondbacks (1)
2. Chris Volstad, rhp, Marlins (1)
3. Andrew McCutchen, of, Pirates (1)
4. Brandon Snyder, c, Orioles (1)
5. Tommy Mendoza, rhp, Angels (5)

BEST LATE-ROUND PICK
1. Omar Aguilar, rhp, Brewers (30)
2. Brian Kirwan, rhp, Twins (11)
3. Anthony Varvaro, rhp, Mariners (12)
4. Kenny Maiques, rhp, Cardinals (37)
5. Michael Hollimon, ss, Tigers (16)

THE ONE WHO GOT AWAY

College Players
1. Luke Hochevar, rhp, Dodgers (1)
2. Tim Linecum, rhp, Indians (42)
3. David Huff, lhp, Phillies (19)
4. Aaron Bates, 1b, Marlins (8)
5. Doug Fister, rhp, Yankees (6)

High School Players
1. Jordan Danks, of, White Sox (19)
2. Cody Satterwhite, rhp, Indians (37)
3. Reese Havens, ss, Rockies (29)
4. Justin Bristow, ss, Royals (22)
5. Justin Smoak, 1b, Athletics (16)

BEST DRAFT-AND-FOLLOW SIGNINGS
1. Lorenzo Cain, of, Brewers (17 in 2004)
2. Michael Saunders, of, Mariners (11 in 2004)
3. Stephen Marek, rhp, Angels (40 in 2004)
4. Kyle Blanks, 1b, Padres (42 in 2004)
5. Eduardo Baeza, rhp, Diamondbacks (47 in 2004)

BEST DRAFT-AND-FOLLOWS FOR 2006
1. Bryan Morris, rhp, Devil Rays (3)
2. Sean O'Sullivan, rhp, Angels (3)
3. Tommie Hanson, rhp, Braves (22)
4. Brad Barragar, rhp, Rangers (8)
5. Brian Needham, rhp, Astros (18)