Monday, May 25, 2009

Season 6 Draft Review

After the positive feedback on the Season 5 Draft Review, I've decided to make this a seasonal post. It take many seasons to determine if a draft was ultimately successful. I think enough time has passed to make a review of the Season 6 draft worthwhile. As before, I will only be examining the first round (no sandwich picks).

1.Alex Martinez (SS) Drafted by gocubz for the Chicago Fire. Alex is a SS with a lot of talent, as you would expect from the #1 overall selection. He broke into the majors in S9 and has performed solidly, but is not yet a star. He has a career .787 OPS as of this writing with a middling track record as a fielder (6+ plays, 10-). He's off to a great start in S12, hitting .315 with an .869 OPS and is also 9/10 in steals. Perhaps this is the year Alex hits the big time?

Grade: B- but potential for better.

2. Glen Christensen (SP) Drafted by Wolfhoundkl for the Texas Beefeaters. Traded to Louisville in S7 in a multi-player deal whose centerpiece was Jesus Martinez , currently on the Richmond War Pigs via Rule V draft. This has not worked out well for Texas. Christensen has ended up being a flop. In 2+ seasons in the bigs, Christensen has gone 14-36 with a 5.45 ERA. Clearly a talent not worthy of the #2 overall selection. But what of Martinez, whom he was traded for? Well, Martinez pitched two season seasons in Texas, posting a 20-19 record with an ERA around 5, before being released during the arbitration process. The other players acquired for Christensen are in other organizations and have nothing of note.

Grade: D-

3.Justin LaRocca (SS) Drafted by KSBeachbums for the "other" Chicago team, which later became the Cincinnatti Jerry Springers. LaRocca is a very talented player and has hit very well in his 3+ seasons in the big leagues. His best season was S10 when he hit .308/.382/.531 with 31 HR and 106 RBI. He has a career line of .298/.367/.478, which is excellent for a SS. He is not a great fielder, with 2+ plays and 13- plays, but has the skills to man the position without being a huge liability. He did play 1b his rookie year and won the NL Gold Glove award. He won the S10 Silver Slugger as a SS.

Grade: A-

4.Birdie Leonard (2B) Drafted by dwevans24 (love the username) for Sacramento. This franchise ultimately became the LA Baja Racers, who traded him to SF in S8 for Woody Swann, Willie Tatis and Gaylord Anderson. Leonard broke into the majors in S11 with the Night Demons and posted a .273/.336/.437 line with solid defense at 2b. His numbers are off from that somewhat in S12. Anderson barely played for LA before being shipped out to the Fire for Marc Ratliff and Gene Bell, neither of whom have made the majors yet. Anderson has a .697 majors OPS thus far. Woody Swann has 1.5 awful seasons in LA. The winner out of all this is San Francisco.

Grade: F for the results of the #4 pick for the franchise, C for the player himself.

5.Ozzie Purcell (RF) Drafted by Oli35 for Scottsdale. Purcell is still with the Aces and tearing the AL up. He has a .274/.382/.578 line in 3 full seasons plus 2 partials for the Aces. His best season (S10) saw him hit 53 HR with 113 RBI and 107 BB. Throw in 24 SB and you've got one hell of a player. He's made 3 All Star Teams and won a Silver Slugger.

Grade: A+

6.J.J. Bell (2B) Drafted by bearclan1 for Sante Fe. He was traded to Louisville (do they acquire everyone?) in S7 and was traded to Montogmery in S11, where he currently sits with the now Tampa Bay Tornadoes. Bell has hit .255/.306/.445 in 1+ seasons in the majors and his fielding has been adequate, but should ultimately be his strength. Bell was traded in a 2 for 2 swap that acquired Jake Kelly, a pedestrian 3B that has had some hitting success in 1+ seasons, and Pascual Ortega, a SP that was signed by the Fire after being released by Sante Fe. Got all that?

Grade: C for player, D for ultimate results.

7.Julio Morales (SS) Drafted by mytitan for Pawtucket Green Sox (now Burlington Federalists). Julio is another in a middle infielder heavy draft. His ratings suggest SS is not his best position right now, but it could be in time. In his 2 full and 2 partial seasons in the majors, he has posted .256/.330/.382. and has bounced between SS, 2b and CF. He showed some pop in S11 with 23 HR.

Grade: C+

8. Kenneth Ardoin (P) Drafted by smish for Salt Lake City. Unsigned.

Grade: F

9.Pep Butcher (3B) Drafted by 13black for the Tucson Shockers. Traded to Louisville (yes again) in S9 for Terrence McRae and Nash Gallagher. Butcher has been a key cog in the Sluggers' machine, posting a .279/.343/.509 line in 3+ seasons. In S11 he hit .298 with 37 HR, won the Gold Glove award and made the All Star Team. McRae has been his equal at the plate, posting .280/.341/.539. He put up back to back 40 HR seasons for the now St. Louis Brew Masters and has 20 HR already this year. Gallagher is an offensive minded catcher that has put up OPS around .700 the past 3 seasons.

Grade: A for the pick and the trade, which worked out for both parties.

10. Happy Fielder (RF/SS) Drafted by eclipse33 for the Vancouver Velvet Vultures. Traded in S12 by the now Boise Bar Stool Prophets with Armando Arias to Tampa Bay for Frank Cunningham and Kent Hooper. Fielder had a strong start to his career, posting a 1.021 OPS in 31 games after getting called up in S10. In his only full season, though, he posted a more pedestrian .257/.327.378 in 651 AB. He was drafted as a SS and has the skills to play the position, but is currently playing RF for Tampa. He's having a better season so far in S12. The player Fielder was packaged with, Arias, is a nice SS prospect taken in the 2nd round of S10. He is currently in AA with the majors in his future. Cunningham is in AAA and has the potential to be a #4-#5 starter who can eat innings. Hooper is in AA and has a future in the bigs as a long reliever/strong setup man type.

Grade: C for the pick but a B for the trade.

11.Clyde Ryan (RP) Drafted by Dufferman for the Baltimore Bay Dogs. Traded to (lol) Louisville in S9 for Harry Guevara and Rex Lawrence. Ryan is a rubber armed reliever who can pitch 100+ innings as a SuA. He broke in the bigs in S11 and has thus far posted a 4.23 ERA and 1.37 WHIP in 78.2 IP. He has 2 80+ pitches, 83 control and 60+ splits. He should be a fine reliever for years. Guevara has had an up and down career with the BayDogs. His best season was S11 when he went 13-15 with a 3.58 ERA in 32 starts. He is 88-85 4.65 ERA in his career. Lawrence left via free agency having never played for the big league team and signed with Richmond and is currently their closer, although with mixed success.

Grade: B+ for the pick, C- for the trade.

12.Chet Caruso (SP) Drafted by cliff357 for El Paso. He is with the same franchise, which is now the Richmond War Pigs. He finally broke the majors in S12 and posted a 5.33 ERA in 49 IP, mostly out of the bullpen. He has since been demoted to AAA. He has had little minor league success. He is an unremarkable player and should have no impact at the big league level.

Grade: F

13.Larry Cannon (2b/CF) Drafted by rockydawg07 for the Cleveland Moosedawg. Cannon is a talented player with a great glove, durability, speed and power. He broke into the majors in S9 and has been remarkably consistent at the plate. He has posted an OPS between .815 and .827 in each of his first 3 full seasons. In S11, he hit 34 HR and drove in 118 runs with 19 SB. He is a gifted defender at 2b with 14 career + plays and only 3 - plays.

Grade: A

14.Jumbo Ruiz (SP) Drafted by ewchippe for the Wichita Bad Boys (now Tampa Bay Tornadoes). Traded to Louisville (were they trying to acquire everyone in the first round of this draft?) in S8 and then to Kansas City Knights (now Burlington Federalists) in S9. He was traded in S8 for Erik Andrews and Sam Mack. Ruiz cracked the majors in S10 and has been wholly unsuccessful to date. He is 17-38 with a 5.78 ERA in 77 starts in his career. His ratings would seem to indicate he can be better than that, but is not a top line starter. His S12 numbers have been much improved. Andrews is a 2B. In limited PT he has a .639 OPS. He is probably somewhat better than that, but not a whole lot. Mack is a 33 y.o. reliever who has a 7+ ERA in a cup of coffee a long time ago.

Grade: C- for the pick, D for the trade.

15.Kevin Bogar (1b/LF) Drafted by tbook for the Helena Hashies (now Syracuse Coureurs Des Bois). Kevin is currently in AAA, but has played the equivalent of one full big league season in the majors, posting a .248/.306/.462 line with 24 HR and 75 RBI. He is a RH hitter with a lot of power, but struggles vs. lefites and has a poor batting eye. Might be able to stick as a platoon player at some point.

Grade: D+

16.Brendan Garcia (1B/COF) Drafted by mase4342 for the Rochester Scorpions. Garcia is a switch hitter with some talent. He broke into the majors in S9 with a career best .868 OPS. His S11 season was a fine year as he posted .283/.345/.443 with 17 HR and 100 RBI. He is off to a hot start in S12. He makes good contact and has a good batting eye. He is more effective against righties. His glove is a little light for RF, but is a good LF/1B.

Grade: B

17.Malcolm Hiljus (1B/LF) Drafted by the_e_man for the Toledo Mud Hens. He was traded to the Atlanta Cheese Grits in S8 for Hector Leon. Hiljus broke into the majors in S9 for Atlanta and has had an up and down career. His best season was S11 when he posted .277/.357/.511 playing every day with 32 HR and 114 RBI. He slumped his next year and was traded to the Las Vegas High Rollers before S12. Leon is a high innings starter who has 2 very good pitches but little else to distinguish himself.

Grade: B for the pick, D- for the trade.

18.Fritz Lindsey (SP) Drafted by djbradford for the New Britain Yorkies. Lindsey has been very successful in the majors for NB, with a career 27-11 mark with a 3.81 ERA in 354 IP. Shockingly, he is in AAA right now, which speaks to the depth of pitching in New Britain. He has good control, 3 70+ pitches and a 70+ righty split.

Grade: B+

19.Ron Bukvich (2B) Drafted by bearclan1 for the Santa Fe Flyers. Traded to the El Paso Kamikazees (now Richmond War Pigs) in S7 with Sandy Ledesma for Rudy Puffer. Bukvich broke in to the majors in S9. He has posted a .256/.343/.425 line in his career. he hit 21 HR in S10 and stole 33 bases in S11. He has an excellent batting eye to compliment otherwise average to slightly above average skills at the plate. He is merely an OK defender who is limited by range. Ledesma is an awful lefty reliever. Puffer has been a capable player for the Flyers, posting a .282/.341/.483 line with 113 career HR and 138 SB thus far. He is miscast in CF, where he has neither the range nor glove to play there. Could pass as a 2B but his best position is LF.

Grade: C for the pick, B+ for the trade.

20. Tim Cooke (SP) drafted by Nelig for the Buffalo Nickels. Cooke is a talented lefty with 2 ++ pitches and one above average pitch. After breaking in the bigs in S9, his best season was S11 where he went 14-14 with a 3.33 ERA in 216.1 innings. He is struggling thus far in S12. Control could be a problem.

Grade: B

21.Gary Andrews (RP) Drafted by radek for the NY Metropolitans. Andrews is a talented lefty reliever who can eat tons of innings. In his sophomore season in S11, he pitched 105.1 innings out of the pen with a 2.73 ERA and 1.22 WHIP in 70 games. Should be a horse for years.

Grade: A

22.Rob Karros (CF/2B) Drafted by baldric for the San Juan RTRTA. He was Rule V'd by Cleveland in S10 then claimed off waivers by Buffalo. Karros's strength is defense, where he has the range, glove and arm to play anywhere. His accuracy makes him best suited for CF, RF or 2B. He had a sterling rookie year in S10, posting a .304/.356/.448 line with 18 HR and 29 SB. He has not hit as well since. As a 2b, he is fantastic, winning a Gold Glove in S10. He has 3+ plays in 75 games in CF.

Grade: B- for the pick. Probably shouldn't have let him go for nothing.

23.Mickey McMahon (2B/3B) Drafted by Thunderstrik for Arizona. Released in S10 by the Salem Blad Beavers (formerly AZ) and claimed off waivers by the New Orleans Zydeco. High splits highlight his resume, but an incredibly poor eye and subpar contact/power sabotages any chance of being productive. Has a .613 OPS in 206 big league AB. Not a big league player.

Grade: F

24.Matt Sexton (LF) Drafted by jahu43 for the Louisville Sluggers. Traded to SF in S8 for Grover Chase. Sexton is now with Salt Lake City. He has above average contact/power but average splits and eye. He is a rookie in S12 with a .235/.291/.426 line. He can probably do better, but is most likely not an impact player. Should stick in the big leagues, though. Chase is a SP who appeared in only 19 big league games for Louisville before being dealt in the Yamid Molina trade.

Grade: D+ for the pick, an ultimate A for who he helped bring to Louisville.

25.Victor Delgado (2B) Drafted by lets_try for the Minnesota Explorers. Traded by the Patriots (former Explorers) to the Mets in S10 (who flipped him to Salt Lake) in a 6 player deal that netted Wilt Raines, Raymond Rivers and Charlie Carson. Delgado is a LF playing 2b. He has good contact and a 70 righty split. In 444 AB, he has posted .273/.321/.457. he is doing well in 12 thus far and can probably hold down a starters job. The web of who's left and who went where is just too complicated for me to take the time to follow as none of the 3 players acquired are with the Patriots.

Grade: C for the pick, who knows for the trade.

26.Patrick Ruffin (LF) Drafted by bkdries for the Burlington Black Sox (now Dover Blue Crabs). Has not cracked the bigs yet. Has good contact/vR/eye, but not great. Awful vs. lefties. No power. Might be a role player someday.

Grade: D

27.Sam Rodgers (2B/CF) Drafted by pfontaine for the Atlanta Cheese Grits. Sam has a good glove and solid range. He can play 2B and CF capably. S11 was his first full season in the majors where he came off the bench for Atlanta and played CF a fair bit against lefties. He posted a .291/.348/.444 line with 10 HR in 302 AB. He has solid but unspectacular batting ratings across the board. Can be a solid 2b or role player, but not a star.

Grade: C

28.Quentin Lary (SP) Drafted by dizzlebob for the Pittsburgh Studdabubbas. Traded to Colorado in S7 for Wayne Hernandez and A.J. Diaz. Ultimately traded to SF. Lary is an immensely talented lefty pitcher and it is amazing he lasted this long in the draft. His only Achilles heel is his stamina, which makes him a 5-6 inning starter at best. Still, with 80+ splits and 94 control, he can give you plenty of HQ innings. In his first season not in the pinball machine that is Colorado, he posted a 3.10 ERA in 177 IP with a 1.11 WHIP. Hernandez is a nice lefty hitting 1b/LF with a career .834 OPS. Diaz is a CF with middling defensive skills and a .787 career OPS.

Grade: A+ for pick, C- for trade. Hernandez and Diaz are nice players and can contribute in the bigs, but they are not equal to the talent of Lary.

29.Andre Meche (RF) Drafted by bjb2378 for the San Francisco Night Demons. S11 was his first full season in the bigs and Meche delivered, with a .307/.368/.466 line with 20 HR and 85 RBI. He has spent 2 60 day DL stints, which has hurt. Has not played at all in S12 thus far.

Grade: B+ Only knock is his health.

30.Hamlet Towers (LF) Drafted by mdukes13 for the Washington Generals. Towers is a solid lefty hitter with good contact/eye and decent splits/power. He has a .292/.371/.491 career line. S11 was his best so far, with 22 Hr and 77 RBI to go with a .310 AVG and 17 SB.

Grade: A (for this position in the draft, this is a great pick).

31.Kent Sisler (1B/DH) Drafted by jdbkaput for the St. Louis Clydesdales. Still with the franchise (now Augusta Caesars). Sisler is a switch hitting 1b with great contact/power/vR and a good eye. He has mashed to a .311/.369/.580 line in 2 full plus 2 partial seasons. Hit 48 HR with 145 RBI in S10. He made the S11 All Star Team.

Grade: A

32.Wilt Raines (1B) Drafted by leppykahn for the Colorado Blasters. Traded to Pawtucket in the Victor Delgado deal (see #25 above). Raines has good splits and eye as a switch hitter. In his rookie year, S10, he hit .309/.364/.487 with 21 Hr and 111 RBI. Should be a very solid hitter for years.

Grade: A- for pick, trade unknown (again see above).

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