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The 2011 MLB Draft is four days away and Jonathan Mayo of MLB.com has put together his latest first round mock draft. In his latest mock, Mayo has projected the San Francisco Giants selecting Brian Goodwin, a sophomore outfielder out of Miami Dade College. Goodwin was originally drafted in the 2009 draft by the Chicago White Sox before electing to attend the University of North Carolina. He transferred to Miami Dade after academic issues at UNC.
The Giants took Gary Brown a year ago, and so far, so good. Nabbing a toolsy outfielder to join him might make sense.
Goodwin appears to be a corner outfielder with the potential for above average power to all fields and solid glove work in the outfield:
Goodwin possesses many of the same tools from a couple of years back. The left-handed hitter should be above average at the plate, with a good approach and the ability to square balls up. He's got future above-average power to all fields as well.An above-average runner, he uses his speed well on the bases, where he should be a basestealer, and in the outfield. He's got plenty of arm strength and a solid glove -- one that could work in center, but might be best suited to left field when all is said and done.
The Giants current organizational outfield depth has talent and question marks. At the major league level the starters are Pat Burrell, Andres Torres and Cody Ross, with Nate Schierholtz and Aaron Rowand providing depth. Brandon Belt is playing in the infield and outfield and could end up finding a permanent spot in the outfield if the Giants decide to move Buster Posey to first base at some point.
The Giants minor league system includes some intriguing talents. 2010 number one pick Gary Brown is off to a monster start with San Jose of the California League. He's currently hitting .371 with five home runs and 39 RBIs. The closest prospect to the big leagues (beyond Brandon Belt) would be Thomas Neal. He's slowly made his way up the ladder and has been hitting the ball well since returning from injury last week. If he can stay healthy he would seem to project as a decent third option in the outfield or maybe come off the bench and provide some punch as a great fourth outfield option.
The 2011 MLB Draft is four days away and Jonathan Mayo of MLB.com has put together his latest first round mock draft. In his latest mock, Mayo has projected the Oakland A's selecting George Springer, a junior outfielder out of Connecticut:
It's always a bit disconcerting when there's consensus among prognosticators about a pick this deep in the first round, but it still makes a good deal of sense.
MLB.com currently rates Springer as number eleven overall among the 2011 draft-eligible players. They view him as a potential five-tool player who can hit the ball over the field with serious power and is generally above average to plus in the five major categories. It's interesting that they describe him as a five tool player given his occasional struggles making contact. He's a big swinger with a ton of speed in his bat, but if he is missing a lot, he'll need to figure out how to compensate.
As things currently stand, the A's organizational outfield depth is all over the board. Their current starting outfield includes Josh Willingham, Coco Crisp, David DeJesus and Ryan Sweeney on occasion. They all have their moments, but none is particularly irreplaceable at this point in time. In the minor leagues, Michael Taylor and Michael Choice would seem to qualify as their top outfield prospects for now. Chris Carter is bouncing around positions and right now is dealing with injuries and struggles.
Taylor came over in the Brett Wallace-Phillies trade and struggled mightily in 2010. However, since returning from injury Taylor has been hitting the ball fairly well. Michael Choice had a great spring training and is currently with the Single A Stockton Ports. His batting average isn't particularly high but he's tied for the organization lead in home runs.
The A's have lacked serious pop in the outfield for quite some time now. Guys like Milton Bradley, Jose Guillen and Nick Swisher have all come and gone and the A's haven't had a consistent OF power threat since pre-injury Jermaine Dye. Grabbing an outfielder makes some sense as they try and develop some power in the organization.
With the 2011 MLB Amateur Draft right around the corner, the San Francisco Giants organization will have a lot of talent to sort through before they make their picks. They also must think of where they have places of need, and the one that jumps out to me first is at the shortstop position.
The Giants have a couple of options currently at shortstop, although neither one is considered a franchise player. Their Minor League affiliates do have some promising players at those positions, so should the G-Men look to draft for a shortstop? Let’s take a look at who they have first:
San Francisco Giants: Miguel Tejada, Mike Fontenot
Fresno Grizzlies: Emmanuel Burriss (currently with Giants via call up)
Richmond Flying Squirrels: Nick Noonan, Sharlon Schoop
San Jose Giants: Brandon Crawford, Carter Jurica
Augusta Greenjckets: Ehire Adrianza, Robert Haney
The Giants will need an upgrade at shortstop sooner than later as both Miguel Tejada and Mike Fontenot are only signed through 2011, and have some decent talent waiting in the farm system. Giants fans recently saw Emmanuel Burriss’ value after his game winning hit against the A’s, not to mention his speed, which the Giants could always use more of. Brandon Crawford is considered one of the top 10 prospects in the Giants organization, while Ehire Adrianza has been a bright star to a somewhat dim season for the Greenjackets.
There’s already been talk of possible trades for Jose Reyes, but the Giants farm system has produced a few nice pieces as of late, maybe they can again at shortstop? They can always draft a few more of them if they’d like, here’s a few that might peak the Giants interest via MLB.com:
DeAndre Allen, Sequoyah HS (TN)
Levi Michael, North Carolina
Justin Atkinson, North Surrey Secondary School
Here’s the full list of draft eligable shortstops from MLB.com.
Yesterday we kicked off a running series of updates looking at the Oakland Athletics farm system. The 2011 MLB Amateur Draft is starting June 6 and we thought it would be helpful to take a look at each position in the A's organization. Yesterday we began with second base. Today we're moving on to third base. We'll be taking a look at the position throughout the A's organization and then provide a quick rundown of some of the top prospects in the upcoming draft.
The third base position is arguably the weakest position in the organization. The A's aren't getting much production at the big league level, and the minors are really not much better. They get solid fielding from some of their third basemen, but for a corner position, the offense is pretty weak.
Oakland Athletics: Kevin Kouzmanoff, Andy LaRoche
Sacramento Rivercats: Josh Horton, Josh Donaldson
Midland Rockhounds: Stephen Parker, Jason Christian
Stockton Ports: Leonardo Gil, Michael Gilmartin
Burlington Bees: Tony Thompson, Nino Leyja
If you look through the Oakland A's minor league farm system, you'll see each team mixing and matching guys at third base trying to find some kind of answer. Stephen Parker and Leonardo Gil have emerged as the starters at AA and A, but neither is worth writing home about at this point. The other option is getting Adrian Cardenas developed into a capable defensive player at third or second, but I don't think anybody is holding their breath for that.
The baseball draft is often about grabbing the best player available. The A's will probably go that route, but they definitely need to grab a third baseman at some point. The best third baseman in this draft is Anthony Rendon and I would bet every penny I have that he won't be around when the A's make their first pick of the draft. There are some other impressive talents courtesy of Keith Law's Top 100:
Travis Harrison, Tustin HS (CA)
Nick Delmonico, Farragut HS (Tenn), C/SS
Jason Esposito, Vanderbilt
You can view more draft-eligible third basemen at mlb.com.
The 2011 MLB Amateur Draft kicks off on June 6 and the Oakland Athletics hold the 18th pick of the first round, followed by pick 105 in the third round. They do not have a second round pick due to their signing of Tampa Bay free agent Grant Balfour. As the A's work out their draft board, we thought it would be helpful to take a look at each position on the roster and where the A's stand at the major league and minor league level. Additionally, we'll put together a brief rundown of the top draft-eligible prospects at each of those positions.
For today, I thought we'd start out with the second base position. The A's have a guy on the horizon (Jemile Weeks) just about ready to replace an aging veteran (Mark Ellis), so it will be interesting to see how the A's decide to address the position. As it currently stands, here is a list of the A's second baseman throughout the organization. This list includes the starter at the position as well as other guys with significant playing time at the position:
Oakland Athletics: Mark Ellis
Sacramento Rivercats: Jemile Weeks
Midland Rockhounds: Tyler Ladendorf, Jason Christian
Stockton Ports: Conner Crumbliss, Michael Gilmartin
Burlington Bees: Ryan Pineda, Nino Leyja
One name missing from this list is Adrian Cardenas. While Cardenas has spent some time at second base in the past, his fielding leaves a lot to be desired and the team is trying him at other positions at Sacramento this season. Jemile Weeks is the guy expected to replace Mark Ellis in 2012. His primary problem has been health as he has yet to play more than 80 games in a single season. For now he's playing extremely well at Sacramento with a line of .320/.413/.453 through 128 at bats in 31 games.
A's director of player development Keith Lieppman spoke about Weeks during a rundown of the A's farm system:
[Weeks has] been outstanding. I've really enjoyed watching him. He had a collision at home plate where he tweaked his hamstring, but other than that, we're seeing a complete player, with the speed and occasional power, excellent on defense, just really evolving. We never got to see him at 100 percent because of his injuries, so now we know what the scouts saw when he was a No. 1 pick. His production right now, it's everything you want out of a player. He's making his way and making a statement right now, and we're all noticing it.
If Weeks can stay healthy, the A's will be in excellent shape at second base for the foreseeable future. Of course, given Weeks' injury history the A's will need to bring in some more talent. Here is a rundown of some of the top second basemen in the upcoming draft courtesy of MLB Bonus Baby and Keith Law's Top 100:
Kolten Wong, Hawaii
Ryan Wright, Louisville
Joshua Tobias, Southeast Guilford (NC)
Levi Michael, North Carolina, 2B/SS
Zach MacPhee, Arizona State
Cory Spangenberg, Indrian River State (FL), 2B, SS
You can view more draft-eligible second basemen at mlb.com.
As we prepare for the upcoming 2011 MLB Amateur Draft, we've decided to check out the San Francisco Giants top prospects at this point. The Giants are in a position where the cupboard is thinning out a bit thanks to the Giants being able to promote a lot of young talent to the big leagues. They've promoted primarily pitchers, but Buster Posey has obviously worked out ok for them as well.
There are a variety of prospect rankings out there. Baseball America is the grand-daddy of them all, but SB Nation has its own MInor League Ball to satisfy your needs. Additionally, the folks at mlb.com have put together a database ranking the A's top ten prospects. Here is a rundown of the top ten listed in all three. For BA, please note the rankings were as of January 26, 2011. For Minor League Ball, the rankings are from November 14, 2010.
|1||Brandon Belt||Brandon Belt||Brandon Belt|
|2||Gary Brown||Zack Wheeler||Zack Wheeler|
|3||Zack Wheeler||Gary Brown||Gary Brown|
|4||Francisco Peguero||Francisco Peguero||Francisco Peguero|
|5||Thomas Neal||Charlie Culberson||Ehire Adrianza|
|6||Jose Casilla||Ehire Adrianza||Brandon Crawford|
|7||Jarrett Parker||Thomas Neal||Thomas Neal|
|8||Ehire Adrianza||Eric Surkamp||Charlie Culberson|
|9||Jorge Bucardo||Tommy Joseph||Eric Surkamp|
|10||Charlie Culberson||Brandon Crawford||Tommy Joseph|
There is clear consensus at the top of the Giants rankings. Brandon Belt is a clear-cut number one and will likely be back in the major leagues very soon. Zack Wheeler, Gary Brown and Francisco Peguero are the next three prospects in some order with Wheeler and Brown playing together at Advanced Single A San Jose, while Peguero recovers from knee surgery before getting going at AA. After those four prospects, the remaining consensus players are Ehire Adrianza, Thomas Neal and Charlie Culberson.
The Giants have promoted a sizable chunk of top talent in recent years. This past season saw Buster Posey and Madison Bumgarner stake their claim at the major league level and make huge contributions towards the Giants 2010 World Series victory. Even though the team lacks a ton of minor league talent at this point, any franchise will trade places with the Giants in that sense.
Belt earned a spot on the team's 25-man roster out of spring training but struggled in 17 games with a line of .192/.300/.269 and was sent back to Fresno. In 25 games at Fresno he's found his stroke as he has crushed the ball to the tune of .380/.519/.620 (he added a grand slam Friday night). It's safe to say Belt will be back in the majors at some point in 2011.
After Belt, Wheeler and Brown are the two big prospects for the Giants. Wheeler was a first round pick in 2009 and Brown was a first round pick in 2010. The two youngsters are playing together in San Jose where Brown is finding serious success thus far. In 40 games, Brown has put together a line of .378/.449/.529 and could very well find himself in AA before too long.
As the Oakland Athletics prepare for the 2011 MLB Amateur Draft, it's worth checking out the organization's top prospects at this point. Given the nature of baseball as far as turnover and the number of prospects that actually emerge as legitimate big leaguers, one would imagine the A's will load up at just about every position multiple times over June 6 through 8. However, it's still valuable to look at the top talent in the organization.
There are a variety of prospect rankings out there. Baseball America is the grand-daddy of them all, but SB Nation has its own MInor League Ball to satisfy your needs. Additionally, the folks at mlb.com have put together a database ranking the A's top ten prospects. Here is a rundown of the top ten listed in all three. For BA, please note the rankings were as of December 3, 2010. For Minor League Ball, the rankings are from December 29. For both I've removed players that have been promoted to the majors. For BA that means I only have the top nine prospects since Tyson Ross is on the list.
|1||Grant Green||Grant Green||Grant Green|
|2||Chris Carter||Chris Carter||Chris Carter|
|3||Michael Choice||Michael Choice||Michael Choice|
|4||Steve Parker||Ian Krol||Jemile Weeks|
|5||Max Stassi||Jemile Weeks||Max Stassi|
|6||Ian Krol||Yordy Cabrera||Aaron Shipman|
|7||Michael Taylor||Max Stassi||Yordy Cabrera|
|8||Jemile Weeks||Aaron Shipman||Ian Krol|
|9||Yordy Cabrera||Renato Nunez||Michael Taylor|
|10||Adrian Cardenas||Michael Taylor|
The MLB.com rankings were probably created the most recently as their site also includes their current minor league numbers. However, there is an inherent subjectivity to any rankings like this, so we have to take them all with a grain of salt. In looking them over, we can at least see some level of consensus about the top talent in the A's organization as well as some structure at the top. All three agree on Green, Carter and Choice at the top. After that we see Jemile Weeks, Ian Krol, Yordy Cabrera, Max Stassi, and Michael Taylor included, leaving three spots mixed around.
On top of those top prospects, the A's would count Tyson Ross as a top prospect given his recent promotion (and now unfortunate injury). Beyond that the rest of the younger A's have been in the big leagues long enough to no longer qualify as glorified prospects.
The A's have to be hoping to get some bats developed from this current crop of minor leaguers. It's been quite some time since they developed a legitimate bat anywhere. They've got some decent bats in the majors, but nothing that instills much in the way of fear in opposing pitchers. They've got some decent complementary bats, but not big threat. Chris Carter and Michael Taylor were considered potential long term big-boppers, but both have had their share of struggles over the last year.
At this point, while Grant Green would appear to be the top overall prospect, the prospect who could represent the big power threat A's fans have been waiting for since Miguel Tejada left town could very well be Michael Choice. He has a lot of development left in front of him, but the raw tools are intoxicating. A's fans will be following Choice close in the coming years.
The San Francisco Giants hold the 29th overall pick in the first round of the 2011 MLB Amateur Draft and have an assortment of needs they'll be looking to address. In addition to the 29th pick, the Giants hold the 49th pick overall in the supplemental round courtesy of Juan Uribe's decision to sign with the Los Angeles Dodgers. The two picks give the Giants an ample opportunity to build for the future. The Giants farm system is in a position where it has promoted some serious talent in the form of Buster Posey and Madison Bumgarner, while some of their more recent draft picks have struggled at times. This draft provides the Giants with an opportunity to restock.
SB Nation's John Sickels, the main man behind Minorleagueball.com, put together his first mock draft for the 2011 draft and also put together a supplemental round mock draft. In looking at the San Francisco Giants, Sickels projected them to grab a pair of potential starting pitchers with their two picks. He has the Giants selecting California high school LHP Henry Owens and Puerto Rico high school RHP Jorge Lopez. Sickels described them as follows:
Over at the MLB.com draft database, they compare Owens to Mark Langston thanks to his body type and potential arm:
[Owens] has a good delivery and arm action that allows him to throw his fastball 90-92 mph, peaking at 94 mph. He keeps it down in the zone and knows how to elevate it when needed. His curve, 69-74 mph, has two tiers to it. The first is a slower, Barry Zito-like breaking ball he throws to get strike one. The second is harder and generates more swings and misses. He also throws a slurvy slider, 75-77 mph, with a wide break. He has an advanced feel for a changeup and while he does try to work it in, he hasn't needed to use it a lot at this level.
The Giants current starting pitching has some serious talent at the top. The big league rotation has home-grown products in Tim Lincecum, Matt Cain, and Madison Bumgarner. Newest addition Ryan Vogelsong was originally drafted by the Giants and then dealt to the Pirates in the trade that brought Jason Schmidt to the Bay. Now Vogelsong is back so I suppose he can sort of be considered "home-grown" talent.
After the Giants starting rotation, the cupboard starts to run a little bit thin. Their top prospects are primarily hitters, but they do have Zack Wheeler to lead the way for pitchers. Eric Surkamp also brings some talent but he'll need to bounce back from a hip injury. Given the contract status of Matt Cain (free agent after the 2012 season), the Giants will be looking to add another arm from the minor league system. Picking up a pair of pitchers could really help to rebuild the organization's pitching depth.
The Oakland Athletics hold the 18th overall pick in the upcoming 2011 MLB Draft and will have an assortment of interesting names in front of them. Mock drafts are being issued around the Internet and SB Nation's own John Sickels has his own mock draft up and ready. Sickels is the proprietor of MinorLeagueBall.com and provides a host of details about rising amateur prospects and current MLB prospects.
In his May 9 mock draft, Sickels has projected Texas high school outfielder Josh Bell to the Oakland Athletics. Sickels views Bell as a talent with huge upside and enormous power potential. The A's have struggled in recent years developing big bats in their farm system, and they dealt away two of their most recent in Carlos Gonzalez and Andre Ethier.
MLB.com has put together an MLB draft database and they really like what Bell brings to the table:
The Texas high schooler ... is a legitimate switch-hitter who has plus hit and power tools from both sides of the plate. It's the kind of bat that compares favorably with someone like Chili Davis or Cliff Floyd, though Floyd didn't switch-hit.
As it currently stands the A's outfield consists of Coco Crisp, David DeJesus and Josh Willingham, with Ryan Sweeney coming off the bench. In the farm system, Chris Carter, Michael Choice and Aaron Shipman remain the top three outfielder prospects, although Carter could end up as a designated hitter at some point. Michael Taylor is still considered a prospect, but he struggled mightily in 2010 and will need a bounce-back season at AAA in 2011.
The 2011 MLB Amateur Draft will kick off in 18 days, which means the league is beginning to cross its t’s and dot its i’s in the coming weeks. One such administrative matter was the selection of representatives for each of the 30 MLB teams. This year involves a variety of Hall of Famers, former All-Stars and other notable representatives.
The Bay Area will be represented by a pair of notable players. Hall of Fame pitcher Gaylor Perry will represent the San Francisco Giants and six-time All Star Bert Campaneris will represent the Oakland Athletics. Perry spent his first ten season with the Giants after signing with the team as an amateur free agent in 1958. Campaneris spent the first 13 of his 19 big leagues seasons with the A’s. He was also signed as an amateur free agent in 1961. The first draft was not until 1965, thus neither player was drafted.
The 2011 MLB Draft will kick off at 7:00pm eastern. MLB Commissioner Bud Selig will announce all the first round picks and then club representatives in attendance will announce picks for Compensation Round A (picks 34-60).
For more on MLB prospects, join Minor League Ball and Baseball Nation. For more Oakland Athletics and San Francisco Giants chatter, join Athletics Nation and McCovey Chronicles. And of course we’ll be here all the way through the 2011 MLB Draft with news and mock drafts in our draft story stream.
The 2011 Major League Baseball Draft is just under three weeks away and teams are quickly developing their Big Boards in order to be fully prepared when June 6 through 8 approaches. The MLB Draft will go no more than 50 rounds depending on how many teams pass on picks. As the NFL and NBA Drafts have grown in popularity, baseball finally joined the hit parade and is now televising the draft on MLB Network and MLB.com.
This year's draft features a host of talent, but it's safe to say two names are cracking the top of most big boards. UCLA junior Gerrit Cole (RHP) and Rice junior Anthony Rendon (3B) are generally considered the clear-cut top two prospects in the 2011 draft class. The first round talent is solid after Cole and Rendon, but it sounds like most people would be shocked if the Pirates and Mariners don't grab those two early at the top of the draft.
Cole went as a first round pick out of high school to the Yankees in 2008 but he elected to go to college instead. Three years at UCLA appear to have only improved his draft stock. His 2011 wins, losses, and ERA don't blow anybody away (5-6, 3.42), but scouts seem to believe he has the stuff to be a top of the rotation pitcher at the big league level.
Rendon is a guy who has hit like crazy at the college level while also showing a good eye (.326/.530/.520) and shown excellent fielding skills. His primary problem has been staying healthy, as he has dealt with ankle and shoulder injuries in recent seasons. If he can stay healthy the talent is not a question mark at all.
As we await the start of the 2011 MLB Draft, here's a rundown of the first round draft order.
|5.||Kansas City Royals|
|7.||Arizona Diamondbacks (for unsigned 2010 first-round pick Barret Loux)|
|10.||San Diego Padres (for failure to sign 2010 first-round pick Karsten Whitson)|
|13.||New York Mets|
|15.||Milwaukee Brewers (for failure to sign 2010 first-round pick Dylan Covey)|
|16.||Los Angeles Dodgers|
|17.||Los Angeles Angels|
|19.||Boston Red Sox (from Detroit Tigers for Type A free agent Victor Martinez)|
|21.||Toronto Blue Jays|
|22.||St. Louis Cardinals|
|23.||Washington Nationals (from Chicago White Sox for Type A free agent Adam Dunn)|
|24.||Tampa Bay Rays (from Boston Red Sox for Type A free agent Carl Crawford)|
|25.||San Diego Padres|
|26.||Boston Red Sox (from Texas Rangers for Type A free agent Adrian Beltre)|
|29.||San Francisco Giants|
|31.||Tampa Bay Rays (from New York Yankees for Type A free agent Rafael Soriano)|
|32.||Tampa Bay Rays|
|33.||Texas Rangers (from Philadelphia Phillies for Type A free agent Cliff Lee)|
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