Seneca Point with pick #1: SP Christopher "Road Runner" Sertori - Led all college pitchers with 156 Ks, and was second in wins and ERA. Only gave up 3 homers in 113 innings. Has three plus pitches: a sinker, a splitter, and a screwball. Fields his position well, and has a knack for getting hitters to hit grounders. Not especially strong stamina, and he is not a take charge kind of guy. Great, great talent who should challenge Hinsdale's Barton Italia and Blazej Jasecko for the title of top pitching prospect in the league.
Kingsbury with pick #2: SP Brigham Donahue - Lefty who tied for the best high school record this year at 11-0. More of a finesse pitcher who nibbles at the corners, and is unlikely to blow away professional hitters. His best pitch is his change up; everything else is is ordinary. Best guess is a #3 starter, solid but no star.
Washburn with pick #3: SS Flynn Len - The Sea Wolves system lacks for prospect, and it is hard to see how the pick of Flynn Len will help. Len finished 14th among high school batters this year in batting average, 23rd in OPS. For a shortstop prospect, he lacks range and hands, especially the latter. He does have the arm to move to third base, but he would need to upgrade his offensive game considerably to compete there. At least he is still 18 with time for talent to emerge.
Ritchford with pick #4: SP Charley "Dragon" Ferneyhough - The Redwings' cupboard is bare when it comes to hitting prospects but they chose to pick another pitcher, and they got the best lefty in the draft in Ferneyhough. Showed superior control as a high school pitcher, but unlike Donahue seems to have the potential to blow batters away, and he has a knack for keeping the ball inside the ballpark. Should be an ace down the road.
Cottonwood with pick #5: SP Campbell "Bam Bam" Hewlett - First college player to be picked. Great fastball, clocked up to 101 MPH. Led all college starters in avoiding homeruns and was second in strikeouts, and he did this against great competition. As a college player, somewhat more of a sure thing than the other top pitching picks, although his lack of stamina is a cause for concern. Also deficient at holding runners. Still, you have to like the odds of Hewlett making it in the pros, and probably quite quickly, as he is far and away the most developed of the top pitching prospects. A good thing, considering the Ravens' lack of up and coming talent.
Twin Falls with pick #6: SS Aubrey Calas - Finished 3rd in the NCAA in homeruns, and possesses decent contact ability. Has been held back a bit by his tendency to swing at bad pithes, and that may haunt him in the pros. Has outstanding range at shortstop, but his hands are more than a little suspect. In fact, most scouts around the league felt that Calas would eventually have to be moved to third or even first base. In a terrible year for college hitters, Calas was probably the best, but he still seems a bit of a reach at pick #6. He should produce some power for the Captains, though.
Blackwood with pick #7: CF Anson "Blueprint" Zahn - Led all high school batters with 14 homers and a .645 batting average. Presumably, he dropped all the way to pick #7 because of the questionable level of competition he faced. Zahn probably lacks the defensive talent to play centerfield in the majors, but he looks like an All Star left fielder to me. Superior ability to drill the ball to all fields, and excellent character. A superior pick.
Jenton with pick #8: SP Blazej "Rock" Jasecko - Forkballer who dominated in high school, leading the nation with a 0.27 era, while giving up just 1 homer in 99 innings. Lacks the velocity of some of the other top pitchers, and does not rely on his fastball to get the job done. Possibly these factors figured in his falling to #8. But he has a sky high ceiling and outstanding character. Better than Sertori? Maybe. Better than Zahn? Probably. Better than everyone else? Hell, yes.
Point Breeze with pick #10: SP Butch "Two Dogs" Lamb - How many talented right handed high school pitchers were there in this draft? Lamb tied for the best high school record in the country at 11-0, and he also led the country giving up only 13 walks in 112 innings pitched. Has a fine fastball-changeup combination making it likely he will strike out his share of professionals. Up to now, he has tended to throw his curveball up in the zone, making him more vulnerable to the long ball than the other top pitchers in this draft. He also looks downright awkward holding runners on base. His lackadaisical attitude makes some scouts wonder whether he will do what's necessary to correct these deficiencies. Still, he looks to be good value at this point in the draft.
Jackson City with pick #13: CL Brutus Rieske - Led the NCAA in ERA and WHIP, although he played against weak competition. Rarely started in college, but he might just surprise everyone and succeed as a starter in the pros with just his fastball and slider. If not, he's got as good a shot as anyone to become a dominant closer, although picking closers can be a risky business. Rieske is 22 and already quite developed.
Hinsdale with pick #14: CF Tyler Scoones - Only Zahn hit more homeruns in high school this year, and Scoones looks to have plus plus power ability similar to that of Zahn. Unlike Zahn, however, Scoones has not shown the ability to hit for average, and scouts are concerned that his swinging for the fences is going to lead to an ungodly number of strikeouts. Looks to have the makings of either a center or right fielder, although he is a bit error prone. A leader, but does not always make good choices in the heat of the moment. A boom or bust pick.
Murray Creek with pick #15: SP Scipio Bepple - Throws a nasty sinker, making it extremely difficult to take him deep. Gave up only 1 hr in 111 IP in high school, and if he is going to make it in the majors, that ability is going to be his ticket. Not going to win by striking them out, and, while his control isn't deficient, it's not going to be his meal ticket either. A good fielder, intelligent, and shows some leadership. He was one of the best three or four players available at this point.
Red Willow with pick #16: SS Moriarty Chettle - Not a flashy player, but he he has pretty good power for an infielder, and and arguably the best batting eye in the draft. His fielding is about average for a shortstop -- he gets to a lot of balls and has soft hands, but show little aptitude for turning double plays. Third base might be his eventual position? Not a blue chip prospect, but a player very likely to help his club.
Hood River with pick #17: SP Giuliano DiGiovine - Lightly used in high school. Has a promising fastball, but his control is less impressive, and his lack of stamina is a concern. Excellent character, but will have a ways to go if he is going to make an impact.
Yancey with pick #18: SS Cameron "Aalty" Austin - The Yellow Jackets possess little pitching talent in their minor league system, but they went for batting with their first pick for the fifth straight year, and they seem to have gotten the best player available. Austin has plus power and a very good sense of the strike zone. He's not going to lead the league in hitting, but his contact isn't a deficiency either. He probably lacks the arm to be a first rate shortstop, but he has excellent infield range, and could at least make a very good second baseman. Very pretty good value for this point in the draft.
Langlade with Pick #19: CF Rory Branch - Hard to know what to make of this guy. Possesses the speed and finesse to put down the perfect bunt, yet he usually swings from his heels. Swings at pitches far outside the strike zone, but when he connects hits them a mile. May struggle to hit .200 at the major league level, yet hit 30 homers a year. Saving grace is that he has a good enough glove that he could make it as a centerfielder. He's a college prospect, but a young one. Maybe he'll round his game out with some good coaching. At worst, he's got the flexibility to be a utility player.
Kendall with pick #20: SP Aksel Balleroy - A very average college right hander who will have to upgrade his stuff if he is going to help the Griffins. His control isn't too bad, but not the kind of corner painting that will make make for a major league career of note.
Oakton with pick #22: SS Lucas Grey - Plus defensive abilities, but he'll have to move to second base to cover up a deficient throwing arm. Has just a little pop, but will need to learn the strike zone if he is going to put up acceptable offensive numbers against major league pitching.
St. Bernard with pick #23: SP Stephen Brown - Led all high school pitchers with 237 strikeouts and tied for the best record at 11-0. Shows an alarming tendency to give up the long ball, especially when he is behind in the count -- which happens quite often. Not at all hopeless as a prospect, but he's going to need to learn not to throw right into the cleanup man's wheelhouse, and, to this point, Brown has not seemed the quickest to pick things up. Still, here he is at pick #23 with 237 K's in 117 innings. The ultimate boom or bust prospect.
Northhampton with pick #24: SP Garin Sams - Northhampton has the top minor league system in the league, so why be surprised that they come away with a great pick at the end of round one? Sams is head and shoulders the best remaining pitcher in the draft, combining excellent control with a very nice splitter that hitters rarely hit out of the park. He's not in the same league as Sertori or Jesecko -- nor, for that matter Ferneyhough or Hewlitt. But he has an excellent chance of being a contributor to a starting staff, and he is the best fielding pitcher in the draft... which makes sense, given that he is also a pretty decent infielder, who, by the way, has a promising bat: decent pop for an infielder, very good sense of the strike zone, and better contact skills than all but a tiny handful of this year's crop of batting prospects. The Lost Dogs will have a choice to make here, a career in the infield or on the mound. But I'm betting Sams will be a pitcher who might occasionally be used in other roles.
Jenton with pick #25: SP John Owen - Prior to the draft, Jenton had extremely little pitching in the pipeline, so it makes sense to take a second starting pitcher. Owen has a nice slider to go along with an assortment of other more ordinary pitches, and he can hit the corners with them all. Scouts worry about his inability to prevent the long ball, however. Stamina is also a question mark.