Who are the top prep arms to target in the upcoming draft?
Thus far in our series, we have focused on the first selection in this year’s shadow draft, which will include a selection for each of the Red Sox’ first 15 draft picks (for a refresher on the series, review the earlier Dissecting the Draft pieces). In our last installment, we set our preference list for Tier One, which consists of the talents we rate higher than the typical talent we’d expect to have available to us at our draft slot (seventh overall).
Who has improved their draft stock with strong spring showings?
The 2013 draft class is shy on impact middle infielders, particularly at the collegiate ranks, where our three profiled players each stand a fair chance of shifting to another position once they begin their pro careers. The high schoolers carry a little more depth but still plenty of questions, with only one player seeming to fit a true first-round profile.
When a team is drafting, how does it distinguish which talents might be the most reasonable targets?
With our first-round targets broken out into three tiers, per our last installment of the Dissecting the Draft series, we are ready to start breaking down our decision-making tree, starting with Tier One. As a recap, here is where our tiers currently stand for our first pick in the draft (seventh overall), in each case in alphabetical order:
Who are the can't-miss corner-infield prospects in the upcoming draft?
The corner-infield position at the major-league level generally places a high level of import on offensive production. That means draft prospects that project to a corner are often viewed first as bats, with a secondary consideration given to their projected level of defensive contributions. This year’s draft class includes a wide variety of corner-infield bats, including some loud tools and some equally loud question marks.
Jon Denney heads a deep class of prep-school catchers in a draft for which the collegiate crop is thin.
The catching crop is deep at the prep ranks and light among the collegians this spring. Below is a look at some of the top names to know for the June draft, beginning with the cream of the catching crop.
The first installment of a new series, in which a member of our prospect team will step into the Red Sox' shoes and conduct a shadow draft.
Creating a Mechanism for Evaluation of Draft Strategy
Part of what drew me to Baseball Prospectus, other than my respect for Jason Parks and his vision of a scouting-department-style “Prospect Team,” was the allure of stepping into a ready-made readership eager and able to help me explore baseball on both a macro and micro level. As far as the draft is concerned, that means not only breaking down draft prospects from a scouting perspective on a player-by-player basis, but also working to understand what goes into formulating an overarching approach to player acquisition through the draft. This includes general strategies relating to draft acquisitions, as well as draft-class-specific game planning.
An injury to Ryan Zimmerman clears room for the Nationals' top prospect for the second straight season.
The Situation: In an ironic twist, the oft-injured Anthony Rendon (Baseball Prospectus’ top Washington Nationals prospect and the 35th-rated prospect on Jason Parks’ Top 101 entering the season) has the injury of another to thank for his first taste of major-league action. Nationals All-Star third baseman Ryan Zimmerman was placed on the 15-day disabled list on Saturday for a strained left hamstring, leaving Washington with a hole to fill at the hot corner. Coming off strong showings in both the Arizona Fall League and spring training, Rendon put himself on the fast track to the Nation’s capital with a red-hot start to the 2013 season, including the most recent 10-game stretch at Double-A Harrisburg, in which he posted a triple-slash line of .333/.511/.636 while clocking in with an 11:8 walk-to-strikeout ratio.
Background: After dropping to Atlanta in the 27th round of the 2008 Draft, Rendon decided to forgo the start of his professional career in favor of three years with Coach Graham and the hometown Rice Owls. Without question the decision was a good one, as the Houston native immediately established himself as the top player in college baseball, eventually earning a major-league deal with the Washington Nationals worth $7.2 million over four years ($6 million of it in signing bonus).