2007 Red Sox Draft Review

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(This comes from a friend of Nerds on Sports who enjoys the Red Sox and Minor League. I thought I would share his views with all of you.)

Willy “The Dupe” Dipkin - Springfield IsotopesI love minor league baseball. The MLB draft is an afterthought in the sports world. There are way too many washouts; the truth is most guys do not even make AA. Even the best of prospects usually need 1.5 seasons to make the big leagues… Craig Hansen anyone?

I, on the other hand, love the draft!! I want to know which college seniors the sox will take in order to field a team in Lowell. Which Bonus Babies the sox take a flier on in the mid rounds etc.

What follows is what the Red Sox did in 2007 plus some comments from my very novice scouting eye. I will spotlight the first 10 rounds plus those picks I found interesting in the later rounds. I also tried to include a likelihood of signing… it is just guesswork from what I have read, and the limited video I have watched.

The Red Sox lost their first round pick due to signing Julio Lugo. Their fist pick was #55 in the supplemental first round.

First Round (Supplemental): Nick Hagadone, LHP, Washington (JR) – Power lefty 90-95 fastball with a chance to have three MLB quality pitches. He both started and closed in college. The Sox will start him off as a starter. He really needs to improve the change up to be a starter. This pick was fairly good in this spot. This guy has a high likely hood of making MLB in a setup roll at the very least.
Chance of signing: 100%

First Round (Supplemental): Ryan Dent, SS/2B, Wilson HS, Long Beach, CA (UCLA signee) – This guy is a super athlete – great speed and contact skills with surprising power in his bat. Most scouts do not believe he can stick at SS but the Red Sox will give him a chance to do so. I bet he ends up in center field. Got to love high upside athletes, in a system that is barren of them.
Chance of signing: 95%

Second Round: Hunter Morris, 1B/3B/OF, Grissom HS, Huntsville, Al (Auburn signee) – Prototypical Red Sox hitter. Good discipline (state record for walks in his senior season), and loads of raw power. Bat will have to carry him because he is lacking defensively. The Sox drafted a bunch of this type of a player – if only one develops it’s a huge win.
Chance of signing: 95%

Third Round: Brock Huntzinger, RHP, Pendleton Heights HS, Pendleton, IN (Indiana signee) – High school righty who is more polished than most, but I do not personally see a ton of room for development. He can hit 90+ with good control, and has a good curve/slider. He is already 6-3 215 so probably not a lot of velocity to be added. This pick is sorta meh, but not terrible.
Chance of signing: 95%

Fourth Round: Christopher Province, RHP, SE Louisiana (SR) – I do not like this pick. Basically a 1 trick pony – big fastball. This is really the only Pick I truly do not like. He can hit 97mph with his fastball so that is good. Maybe he will shut me up and his slider will develop. Absolute max projection is middle relief in my opinion.
Chance of signing: 100%

Fifth Round: Will Middlebrooks, 3B/RHP, Liberty-Elyau HS, Texarkana, TX (Texas A&M signee) – Possibly the best pick of the draft. Projects as both a position player, and a starting pitcher. I think the sox need him at 3B more than pitcher, but honestly have no idea what they will choose to do… Unfortunately this guy is a tough sign. He wants near first round money – maybe near 1 million to sign. I think/hope the Sox get this one done.
Chance of signing: 75%

Sixth Round: Anthony Rizzo, 1B, Douglas HS, Parkland, FL. (Florida Atlantic signee) – See Hunter Morris… I like this guy a little more than Morris. Has a better swing in my eyes. He is only 17 – one of the youngest players drafted.
Chance of signing: 90%

Seventh Round: David Mailman, 1B/OF, Providence HS, Charlotte, NC (Wake Forest signee) – This guy is another Morris/Rizzo type. Maybe a little better athlete than those two, but a little less raw power. This guy needs to make MLB for the sports headlines alone: “Mailman delivers! Sox Sweep Yankees.” Bit of a tougher sign.
Chance of signing: 70%

Eighth Round: Adam Mills, RHP, UNC Charlotte (SR) – NCAA ERA leader. Very polished. Probably at his ceiling. Has a chance to move very fast through the minors. good chance to be a back of the rotation starter in MLB.
Chance of signing: 100%

Ninth Round: Kade Keowen, OF/?, Louisiana State-Eunice JC – This is the enigma. A 6’6” centerfielder? He is all tools at this point: speed… power… Wily Mo Pena clone? Very intriguing pick. Low risk, High reward. I like it.
Chance of signing: 100%

Tenth Round: Kenneth Roque, SS, Puerto Rico Baseball Academy, Guaynabo, P.R.(New Mexico JC signee) – I know virtually nothing about this guy.
Chance of signing: ?

Eleventh Round: Ryan Pressly, RHP, Marcus HS, Flower Mound, TX (Texas Tech signee) – This is a high upside pick wants 2 round type money. I don’t know much more than that. I’d say will be a tough sign.
Chance of signing: 40%

Thirteenth Round: Justin Grimm, RHP, Virginia HS, Bristol, VA (Georgia signee) – This guy wants 1st-2nd round money. I want the Sox to give it to him. He has a very good arm. I loved his scouting video. Sign Grimm! He was hitting 92-93 with his fastball and his curve was very good. Still room to add velocity too. 6’4” 175 lbs. Gonna be a tough sign.
Chance of signing: 50% at best

Fourteenth Round: Jake Cowan, RHP, Roswell (GA) HS (Virginia signee) – I really like Grimm, but I love Cowan. Awesome mechanics and good arm. Room to grow. Another tough sign. The Sox need to get one of these two guys minimum. 6’3” 165 and hitting 92mph and with a good curve.
Chance of signing: 50% at best

Fifteenth Round: Scott Green, RHP, Kentucky (SO) – A first round pick if not for Tommy John surgery last year. Wants first round money: 1 million plus. I sort of have a hunch the Sox might sign this guy but it wont be easy. 6’8” 240 pounds! Mid 90’s fastball; with a nice slider. Reportedly was very strong later in the season, a good sign he is recovered from surgery. Tommy John surgery is basically a joke now – routine procedure.
Chance of signing: 50% (this has some bias)

Sixteenth Round: Austin Bailey, RHP, Prattville (AL) HS (Alabama signee) – Another high school righty with a power arm. Lacks the secondary stuff of Grimm and Cowan. Also isn’t as likely to add velocity as they are. He is 6’1″” 195lbs. Sounds like he wont be too hard to sign if the Sox want him enough.
Chance of signing: 75%

Seventeenth Round: Jaren Matthews, 1B/OF, Bosco Prep, Teaneck, NJ (Rutgers signee) – Another Guy with loads of raw power. A much better athlete than the other guys (Morris/Rizzo/Mailman), but not nearly as disciplined at the plate. Was a star QB as well at a nationally ranked HS.
Chance of signing: No idea

Twenty Fourth Round: Matt Presley, 3B, Cheyenne Mountain HS, Colorado Springs, CO (Arizona signee) – Supposedly the best prospect in Colorado. Power is his main asset, but he wants to get paid.
Chance of signing: 30%

Twenty Seventh Round: Yasmani Grandal, C, Miami Springs (FL) HS (Miami signee) – Projected as a first-second round talent, and he was clearly the best defensive catcher in high school. The bat is a huge question mark. It seems very slow in the video I have watched. He wants huge money: 1 million to sign. That is why a potential first round talent gets drafted in the 27th round. I’d be shocked if the Sox give him 7 figures. I hope they don’t and throw the money at the high upside high school pitchers instead. Nonetheless, this guy is a major talent, and the system lacks catching.
Chance of signing: 10%

Twenty Eighth Round: Nick Tepesch, RHP, Blue Springs (MO) HS – Another high round talent who fell due to salary demands. Has a power arm and room to grow, but wants over 1 million to sign. Doubt it happens. I’d prefer Grimm and Cowan who combined would be the same price.
Chance of signing: 5%

Another solid, interesting Red Sox draft. Good mix of power and athleticism. Lots of high upside high school arms, and bats. The future looks bright.