Friday, June 10, 2016

Draft Excitement!

Ever since I made that post about how it's essential for the Yankees to lose more, they got lucky by having a stretch where they had four games against the abysmal LA Angels. To make matters worse three game serieses against the Rockies and Twins are coming up and they're even worse (they don't even have Trout!). What that effectively means is that the Yankees will have garnered false hope based on a stretch of games against putrid teams. They won't sell at the deadline. And in the second half everything will be awful because they didn't trade anybody away or acquire anybody who can significantly help, and they'll actually have to face good teams. Or rather, AL East teams. They won't be able to beat up bad teams as much. All hope is lost for the Yankees to make use of this year in any capacity (yes, I'm overreacting and being overly negative; this is intentional and meant to be over-the-top).

So screw the major leagues. It's almost time for minor league baseball around these parts anyway and the draft is happening! Feel the excitement! Feel the total neglect for thousands of draftees who went on to accomplish nothing at the big league level!


The Yankees' first rounder this year was Blake Rutherford. I already had a card of his thanks to P-Town Tom's generosity and foresight. I also snatched a cool card on eBay to boot too.

Rutherford appears to be quite a catch. He's a 19 year old outfielder who projects to gain a lot of power as he develops. He can also be selective and offers line drive power to pretty much everywhere on the field. Defensively he's good enough to be a center fielder but some could see him moved to right field. If it all goes well it won't matter if he's moved to right on the count of his bat.
In a way it's rare that the Yankees went with a high school pick (Rutherford was held back one year) but as a guy who's had a ton of time in big events like the Team USA tournaments and was a top 10 draft-eligble prospect prior to the draft in many circles, he's a shot worth taking.

Of course he's yet another SoCal draftee so if you're a parent of an aspiring pro baseball player, move to SoCal. That way the Yankees'll notice you.

Admittedly one of my favorite things is the reaction the players, and their family and friends, make when they first get drafted. It's a pretty cool thing. I just love how genuinely excited everybody is for their friend/family member. Of course the smile on the draftee's face is priceless too. And thank goodness that we live in the age we live in, because otherwise we'd never be able to see this stuff.


So who else did the Yankees take yesterday?


Well in the second round they took Nick Solak (no cards yet). Solak's a pretty good hitter in his own right who profiles to have a high floor as a highly capable infielder (or outfielder given the logjam of infielders in the lower minors). Pretty decent bat with speed to boot. That said, he's obviously a pick the Yankees made to save money. Solak projected more as a third rounder at best. With this move the Yankees potentially saved hundreds of thousands of dollars to use for Rutherford. Make no mistake though, Solak's a pretty decent prospect too.


Also there was a celebration video for Solak too.

How the rest of the draft plays out remains to be seen (it happens today and tomorrow) but considering how Rutherford's a high school grad with a commitment to UCLA, he's going to cost a fair bit of draft pool money (remember, teams have a limit on the total dollar amount they can give as bonuses to their draftees). And that in turn will have an effect on the draft as a whole as that limits their spending ability, as I already showed with Solak above. That doesn't mean that I think the rest of the Yankees draft will just be a bunch of hacks drafted for the sake of saving money. It just means the Yankees probably won't have enough wiggle room for the top (on paper) prospects left. I'd expect tons and tons of college hitters and pitchers who won't really cost that much in terms of bonuses.

So yeah, I'm excited for Rutherford and Solak and what the rest of the draft will bring the Yankees.

As always thanks for stopping by and take care :).

10 comments:

  1. What the hell us up with Louisville baseball? Is their facility in a basement somewhere?

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    1. I dunno. I assume that's what Louisville is like.

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  2. I'm excited too! I think they got a legit top talent. Would be nice to see a 1st rounder pan out! Hopefully you get to see him in SI.

    Solek is interesting. Like you, I'm hoping they like him and view him as a way to save some money to throw at Rutherford. Will he be the new David Adams??

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    1. I'd kind of hope Solek turns out to be better than David Adams but for now I'd kind of lay off on player comps. Better to just get a feel for what they can/can't do out of amateur ball than try slapping on comparisons.

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  3. Still waiting for the Cubs to make their first selection of the draft. Sigh.
    Glad the Rutherford card is of some use!

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    1. Your cards have come in the clutch countless times my friend.
      Looks like they got somebody in Hatch. Interesting to see if the Cubs can finally develop a middle of the rotation starter!

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  4. The Pirates took saber darling Will Craig with their pick. He is a big dude, but the Pirates love walks and he draws a lot of them. He also can throw 95mph!

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    1. Another two-way player. Sounds promising though.

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  5. What's the word on the Sox pick Jason Groome. Seemed to drop quite a bit to #12

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    1. Groome? Where to begin? Hm...

      Well he was basically the best high school lefty in the draft class and he's not even 18 yet. He dropped a bit but if I recall it was due to how a lot of teams wanted to avoid the risk with high school pitchers (remember Dylan Bundy?). Also Groome had a strong commitment to Vanderbilt (which means he's going to cost a lot of money). As such it appears as though the Red Sox draft strategy is like the Yankees'. Most of the allowed draft pool money will go to Groome and the rest of the draft is basically overslots to save money. Groome's got a fastball that sits in the low 90's, a curveball and change up (both of which are work in progress pitches). But considering how good the Red Sox are at developing talent, it wouldn't surprise me to see him turn into a really really good pitcher in their ranks.

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