Thursday, April 5, 2012

2011 Washington Nationals Draft

Greetings, and thank you for coming to my site. I spent countless hours compiling scouting reports and links for each and every player drafted by the Nationals in 2011. For now, you can find each player's page from this main page and you will be able to search by the players who have signed. As each player signs, I will update his page with the date and dollar amount (if provided) and at the end of each season, I will add minor (and eventually major) league stats to each player's page. Feel free to pass the site along, bookmark it and check it regularly!

(Players in bold have signed with the Nats)
Round 1: Anthony Rendon, IF, Rice University (Texas)
Round 1: Alex Meyer, RHP, University of Kentucky
Round 1 (Supplemental): Brian Goodwin, OF, Miami Dade CC (Florida)
Round 3: Matt Purke, LHP, Texas Christian University
Round 4: Kylin Turnbull, LHP, Santa Barbara CC (California)
Round 5: Matt Skole 3B, Georgia Tech
Round 6: Taylor Hill, RHP, Vanderbilt
Round 7: Brian Dupra, RHP, Notre Dame
Round 8: Greg Holt, RHP, University of North Carolina
Round 9: Dixon Anderson, RHP, University of California
Round 10: Manny Rodriguez, RHP, Barry University (Florida)
Round 11: Caleb Ramsey, OF, University of Houston 
Round 12: Blake Monar, LHP, Indiana University
Round 13: Casey "Ory" Kalenkosky, 1B, Texas State University
Round 14: Cody Stubbs, OF, Walters State CC (North Carolina)
Round 15: Zach Houchins, SS, Louisburg College (North Carolina)
Round 16: Deion Williams, SS, Redan HS (Georgia)
Round 17: Esteban Guzman, RHP, San Jose State
Round 18: Nick Lee, LHP, Weatherford College (Texas)
Round 19: Hawtin Buchanan, RHP, Biloxi HS (Mississippi)
Round 20: Josh Laxer, RHP, Madison Central HS (Misssissippi)
Round 21: Todd Simko, LHP, Texas A&M-Corpus Christi
Round 22: Travis Henke, RHP, University of Arkansas
Round 23: Khayyan Norfork, 2B, University of Tennessee
Round 24: Kyle Ottoson, LHP, Arizona State University
Round 25: Erick Fernandez, C, Georgetown University (DC)
Round 26: Shawn Pleffner, OF, University of Tampa
Round 27: Bobby Lucas, Jr., LHP, George Washington University
Round 28: Ken Ferrer, RHP, Elon University (North Carolina)
Round 29: Sean Cotten, C, Tusculum College (Tennessee)
Round 30: Bryan Harper, LHP, University of South Carolina
Round 31: Josh Tobias, OF, Southeast Guilford HS (North Carolina)
Round 32: Billy Burns, OF, Mercer University (Georgia)
Round 33: Trey Karlen, 2B, University of Tennessee-Martin
Round 34: Calvin Drummond, RHP, University of San Diego
Round 35: Alex Kreis, RHP, Jamestown College (North Dakota)
Round 36: Ben Hawkins, LHP, University of West Florida
Round 37: Derrick Bleeker, RHP, Howard College (Texas)
Round 38: Brett Mooneyham, LHP, Stanford University
Round 39: Peter Verdin, OF, University of Georgia
Round 40: Stephen Collum, OF, Cartersville HS (Georgia)
Round 41: Bryce Ortega, 3B, University of Arizona
Round 42: David Kerian, SS, Bishop Heelan HS (Iowa)
Round 43: Mitch Morales, SS, Wellington Community HS (Florida)
Round 44: Matt Snyder, 1B, Ole Miss
Round 45: Richie Mirowski, LHP, Oklahoma Baptist University
Round 46: Tyler Thompson, OF, University of Florida
Round 47: TJ Montgomery, Rockmart HS (Georgia)
Round 48: Mike Bisenius, OF, Wayne State College (Nebraska)
Round 49: Hunter Cole, OF, Dorman HS (South Carolina)
Round 50: Tony Nix, OF, University of California-Riverside

Round 1: Anthony Rendon, IF, Rice University

(from ESPN)
Rice Bio
Wikipedia page

Sean's one sentence analysis: The former Rice University infielder is known for excellent defense, bat speed and plate discipline.

Thoughts from the community: "Injury concerns (shoulder, ankle) dropped Rendon to the Nats (#6) in the ’11 draft but several draft experts felt he was the best player anyway. Not big for a corner infielder (6 ft., 190 lbs.) he’s praised for his strong hands/wrists and superb plate discipline. Defensively, scouts like his skills at either 3B or 2B, noting that his .300BA, 25HR, 100RBI bat is the real deal. My opinion is that he'll start in Hagerstown and play 2B until he (or the Nats brass) feels comfortable, then move up to Potomac and play 3B. The Nationals have never debuted a position player at Potomac and have only started three players there the April after the June they were drafted (Espinosa, Hague, Detwiler)." - Luke Erickson, (@Nats_Prospects)

Previous analysis and notes:
Don't let the 6th overall pick fool you; Rendon is the best player in the draft. That makes it three straight years that the Nationals have picked the best player.  He played a little 2B this year and may be able to play there permanently, but his position isn't what is important right now. Rendon fell to the Nationals due to his recent injury history. With two severe ankle injuries in the past and a current shoulder strain, teams were a little scared off. Still, when a team has the ability to take the best player available in the entire draft with the #6 overall pick, they need to do it as long as said player has two arms, two legs, two eyes, etc.
Rendon's college stats:
2009: .388/.468/.702. 94 H/242 AB, 60 R, 14 2B, 1 3B, 20 HR, 72 RBI, 9/11 SB, 31 BB/23 K
2010: .394/.539/.801. 89 H/226 AB, 83 R, 12 2B, 1 3B, 26 HR, 85 RBI, 14/18 SB, 65 BB/22 K
2011: .327/.520/.523. 70 H/214 AB, 58 R, 20 2B, 2 3B, 6 HR, 37 RBI, 13/18 SB, 80 BB/33 K
From Matt Garrioch, MLB Bonus Baby, 7/17/2011: "Rendon was the consensus 1st overall pick for the majority of the last year. He had 2 pretty serious injuries to his ankle over the last 2 years as well as a shoulder injury that held him to DH most of the season. When he was on the field he showed above average defense at 3B and should have no issue staying there for a long time, as long as his shoulder holds up. If not, he may have to move to 2B, where he should have the athleticism to make that work, but it could take a little time. His bat won't take much time. He is a very polished hitter with the potential to hit .300 with 25 HR annually. He is not a burner but he knows how to run the bases and could steal a few bases."
From John Sickels, Minor League Ball, 6/14/2011: "Although everyone is wondering exactly how bad those medical reports must be, even if Rendon's arm can't handle third base any more, his bat is still excellent."
From John Sickels, Minor League Ball/Baseball Nation, 6/6/2011: "Rendon was long projected as the top position player in the 2011 draft, thanks to his power, superior hitting skills, superb plate discipline, and excellent defense at third base. However, he was hampered by shoulder injuries all spring, limiting him to DH most of the time and causing teams to wonder if he can remain at third...Rendon's ETA to the major leagues, and perhaps even his position, will depend on how his shoulder recovers. Reports/rumors are mixed, but it seems that the Mariners (expected to pick him second overall) may have been scared off by his medical reports. If his arm is OK, Rendon has the tools and skills to reach the major leagues very quickly, within two years and perhaps just a single year without further physical setbacks. A healthy Rendon projects as an on-base machine with good power and excellent defensive ability at third base. The Nationals may have a steal here."
From Marc Hulet, FanGraphs 2011 Draft Live Blog, 6/6/2011: "Washington: Anthony Rendon, 3B (Rice U): Perhaps the famous Rice University injury curse is spreading from the pitchers to the hitters. Rendon has been the consensus first overall pick for the 2011 draft since his eye-opening freshman year of college. However, injury concerns - most recently his shoulder, and previously his ankle - have clouded his draft status. Seattle is known to be very interested but he could end up sliding a bit with reports of so-so medical reports that team doctors are no doubt pouring over until the very last minute. If all goes as hoped, Rendon has the chance to be a Gold Glove fielder with 20+ home run potential and a solid batting average."
From Larry Stone, The Seattle Times, 6/6/2011: "Going into this year, Rendon was the consensus No. 1 pick, and no one thought the Mariners had a chance to get him at No. 2. Three things changed: One, Cole got off to a sensational start and developed a changeup to supplement a fastball that gained in velocity to occasionally over 100 mph. Two, Rendon got a shoulder strain that raised issues about whether he is injury prone while limiting him to DH duties most of the year. And three, Rendon's offensive statistics dropped dramatically, particularly his power. Now, if you believe that No. 2 is largely responsible for No. 3 (along with new bat regulations that resulted in a 40 percent decline in home runs in collegiate baseball), and, furthermore, you believe the injury is not serious long-term, then the Mariners should be ecstatic to get Rendon at No. 2."
From John Klima, Project Prospect, 6/5/2011: "Do I think Rendon can hit? Yes. Do I think he will hit? Probably. Am I sold he will? No. Why? Two words: The Medicals. I’m sorry, if I’m spending a lot of my boss’s money on a guy with a recent history that includes joint injuries – I’m talking shoulders and ankles at a very young age – then that’s a big turn off for me. No. I’ll take my chances somewhere else. What I do think? Too expensive and too many risks. I would be more comfortable with this guy somewhere in the middle of the first round than I would be with one of the very first picks of any draft. Hey, look, nobody drafts for me. I draft for me. If you have risks, I will find them, and if I see warning signs – and on this boy, oh yes I do – then I’ll find someone else."
From Nick Piecoro, Arizona Republic, 5/30/2011: "There are many theories for the offensive decline. The NCAA mandating the use of less potent bats. The pressure of being the country's top prospect. Other teams not giving him pitches to hit, leading to 76 walks, most in the nation. Not getting into the rhythm of the game by being limited to designated hitter....(Rice coach Wayne) Graham even cited Rice's Reckling Park, where he said the wind uncharacteristically blew in all season long. 'He has a very low-maintenance swing,' said a National League scouting director. 'He's going to hit, and you just can't say that about a whole lot of people in any draft. The downside is he has a history of injuries. And sometimes people with a history of injuries continue to have a history of injuries.The (shoulder) muscle won't heal until he gets enough rest,' Graham said. 'It might be something more, but it's not something they can't correct with surgery.' Rendon, who said he hurt the shoulder stretching before the season, was asked if he thought he would need surgery...'I'm just going to take the summer to rehab it and rest it. I'm not going to pick up a ball or anything and make sure it heals.'"
From Jeff Reese, MLB Bonus Baby, 5/26/2011: "The shoulder injury is being blamed for his somewhat underwhelming offensive numbers with some saying it has affected his bat speed. If that's the case, his bat speed must have been completely off the charts prior to this year as the player I saw certainly had no shortage in that area of his game. Indeed, he has some of the most impressive bat speed that I have ever seen at this level, making up for his lack of physicality; it is not hard to see above-average power at the major league level. Rendon has been pitched around all season, and I believe that is the biggest contributor to his stunted power output. It is easy to forget that Rendon played third base during the first series of the year against Stanford. His speed looked completely unaffected by the past ankle injuries, and he showed the same impressive range that we have come to expect. Buster Olney tweeted on Monday that he has 'spoken with more teams that project Anthony Rendon as a second baseman, rather than third baseman, because of body type, arm concerns.' Unless the shoulder injury is structural in nature and a long term concern, that would be a monumental mistake. He has everything necessary to be an elite level defender at third base. The injuries have been exceedingly inconvenient, certainly affecting his value to Rice, but long term, we are looking at the same player as we were a year ago. He has the highest ceiling in this draft – some will certainly disagree with that opinion – while also having the best chance to reach it."
From David Brandt, AP (via Washington Post), 5/25/2011: "Rendon leads all of NCAA Division I with 76 walks so far this season, as pitchers have avoided him at nearly all cost. Tossing the bat toward the dugout for a slow jog toward first base isn’t his first choice, but if this season’s taught him anything, it’s patience. 'Of course as a hitter, I want to go up there and knock the crap out of the ball,' Rendon said. 'That’s what I want to do. But I can’t go out there and hurt my teammates by swinging at balls in the dirt. You’ve got to take it how it is.' 'Rendon 'has great wrists,' said Graham...'His hands work so well. He’s got a very similar bat action to (Hank) Aaron. The way they load their hands, and the bat angle as they get ready to hit. The swings are nearly identical.'
From Nick Faleris, Diamond Scape Scouting, 4/17/2011: "Rendon in 140 characters or less: True five-tool talent; no apparent holes; potential elite bat and glove; above-average speed, +baserunner; team leader with pure approach. Rendon's bat is special. He generates very good bat speed through a strong core, maintaining and then transferring the force in his swing through his strong wrists. The top notch bat speed produces loud contact as often as any amateur in the game, and portends an ability to hit for average and power (despite his unimposing physical appearance) at the next level. Rendon is the rare five-tool talent with game changing ability in each category...and an intricate feel for the game on defense, in the batters box and on the basepaths."
From John Sickels, Minor League Ball, 4/6/2011: "Shoulder injury has bugged him and consensus number one pick pre-season may drop all the way to number two. I still think he's an outstanding prospect with terrific plate discipline, power, and excellent defense, perhaps something like a blending of David Wright and Evan Longoria."
From Steve Carter, Project Prospect, 7/15/2010: "I contacted our old friend, Mr. Veteran Scout, to see what his thoughts were on Rendon: 'Rendon has a lot going on here. He has knack [for hitting] foremost. He does have a good swing in the game. Gets the ball deep. He can hit. Has always hit. Even when he was little. Has some ego that he will have to over come but he projects to be a plus hitter with plus power. Has a plus arm and solid glove. Just not a good runner. Possibly the best bat in country.' He gives his barrel an earlier start than most hitters, which allows him to build up bat speed before he launches his swing. Because of his ability to accelerate the barrel so quickly, Rendon is also able to wait longer than most hitters before he has to commit to the pitch. While some players are unable to reach max velocity with the head of their bat until well after contract, Rendon's early bat speed means his barrel will be up to speed quicker and more efficiently. There is no such thing as a "sure thing" in prospectdom, but Rendon is almost as good as it gets. He is adept at making adjustments on the fly and utilizes video of opponents to seek out any weaknesses they may have -- something young players often don't learn to do until well down the road. To reiterate what Veteran Scout said earlier: 'Plus power, plus hit tool, plus arm, solid glove" and a mechanically fantastic swing to boot. On top of all that, he adds in outstanding patience at the plate. He doesn't just dictate the at-bat the second he walks into the box, he rules it with an iron fist.'"

John Heyman of SI reports that Rendon signed a $7.2 million guaranteed ML deal with the Nats. 

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Round 1: Alex Meyer, RHP, University of Kentucky

Kentucky Bio

Sean's one sentence analysis:  The 6'9" righty is a big risk/reward project player, but has as much  upside as pretty much any player in this draft.

Thoughts from the community: "Meyer is tall, throws hard, and could be the right-handed version of Randy Johnson. He could just as easily become the next Andrew Brackman. Like most super-tall pitchers, repeating his delivery is the skill he has yet to master. His stuff (high-90s FB, high-80s SL) has had scouts drooling for several years now, despite his mechanical flaws. If he fails as a starter, prospect gurus believe he could still succeed as a reliever, comparing him to Daniel Bard." - Luke Erickson, (@nats_prospects)

Previous analysis and notes: Whether he ends up in the starting rotation or the bullpen is yet to be seen; he has a great arm but poor control thus far in his career. I'm a fan of this pick by the Nats, as Meyer has the upside to be a stud starter, or if that fails, he still has the stuff to become a stud closer. He's far from a sure thing, but could become something special.

Meyer's college stats:
2009: 1-4, 5.73 ERA, 59 and 2/3 IP, 53 H, 45 BB, 80 K, .239 avg against
2010: 5-3, 7.06 ERA, 51 IP, 59 H, 36 BB, 63 K, .285 avg against
2011: 7-5, 2.94 ERA, 101 IP, 78 H, 46 BB, 110 K, .222 avg against

From Matt Garrioch, MLB Bonus Baby, 7/17/2011: "Alex Meyer is a 6'9", 200 LB athletic right handed pitcher who has had a hard time maintaining his mechanics. This season things seemed to come together for him. He routinely throws 95-96 and can hit 100 on occasion. Along with that, he has an 85-89 MPH slider that is nearly unhittable at times. They are both MLB plus pitches right now and still have room for improvement. He also improved on his change this year as well and it looks like it could be a useful pitch at the major league level opening up the possibility of him being a starter,which makes him more valuable that a set up man or closer. He needs to be watched, because his mechanics could go haywire quickly due to his long arms and legs but he could also be a front end of the rotation starter."
From John Sickels, Minor League Ball, 6/14/2011: "6-9 monster with 95+ fastball and impressive slider made strides with his command this year, and his changeup is good enough for him to remain a starter. Could be a number one type if it all comes together"
From John Sickels, Minor League Ball/Baseball Nation, 6/6/2011: "He touches 100 MPH on his best days and works consistently in the mid-90s, mixing in a good slider and workable changeup. Meyer still has command issues at times and doesn't always repeat his mechanics consistently, but his ceiling is one of the best in the draft. He's matured emotionally and how has a strong mound presence. Ideally he would develop into a number two starter, although if command is a long-term problem he could end up in a bullpen role. It is unusual to find an arm with this kind of upside with the 23rd pick in the draft, testimony to how deep this class truly is."
From Satchel Price, Beyond the Box Score, 6/6/2011: "Armed with the kind of raw stuff that only Gerrit Cole can match at the college level, Meyer struggled in his first two years with the Wildcats before his command and control finally began to improve during his junior season. Meyer brings two ridiculously good pitches in his fastball and slider, and has a pretty clean delivery for someone that stands 6-foot-9. There's very legitimate No. 1 upside here, although Meyer may take a couple years to reach the majors."
From Robbie Knopf, I Sports Web, 6/5/2011: "As you would expect from his big frame, Meyers throws in the mid-90′s with his four-seam fastball with some nice late movement, but his fastball is not even his best pitch. He also features a nearly unhittable slider in the mid- to high-80′s that looks like a strike before suddenly breaking out of the zone and making hitters look bad as they flail and miss by a couple of feet with their swings. His third pitch is a changeup in the high-70′s that is a straight pitch and it needs work, but it still has a nice speed variation with his fastball and if a hitter is looking slider, they could take the change for a strike. Meyer’s weaknesses are pretty much the same as his strengths. His big figure makes him a scary pitcher to face, but it has also has made his mechanics inconsistent, leading to control struggles. His fastball’s late movement sometimes hinders him from throwing it for a strike. His slider forces tons of swings-and-misses, but he doesn’t often throw it in the zone for a strike looking. His changeup may provide a good change of speeds, but it’s a heck of a lot easier to hit than his other two pitches. A hitter could be overwhelmed by his fastball and easily hit his changeup."
From Reed MacPhail, Fangraphs, 5/27/2011: "As expected, the biggest problem with Meyer was his command. Even though the results were good, his performance could aptly be qualified as “effectively wild”...Surprisingly, Meyer showed much better command of his slider than he did with his fastball. He was able to consistently break his slider off the outside corner of the strike zone, generating a lot of swings-and-misses. While Meyer struggled with his fastball command, he appeared much more comfortable throwing away from right-handers than he did coming inside. While Meyer has made strides in refining his command since high school, it will be hard for him to ever have even average command. His arms are simply so long that it’s difficult for him to keep everything in sync. His arm action is long in the back, and I think the somewhat unorthodox delivery will makes it especially difficult for Meyer to command the ball. Meyer will also have to make strides to control the running game, as the length in the back of his delivery causes him to be slow to the plate. When it comes right down to it, I don’t envy the scouting directors picking in the 6-12 range who will have to make the call on Meyer. He has the size and stuff to be an absolute force in a big-league rotation, and he’s made encouraging strides over the last three years, but he’s still raw. While he could be great, you can see him as the type of pitcher who’s lack of command forces a move to the pen. While his fastball-slider combination could make him a shutdown closer, in this highly regarded a draft class, you’re probably looking for more value out of a top-10 pick."
From Jonathan Mayo,, 5/27/2011: Quotes from Meyer: "I finally quit growing this year and started putting on weight, but it started with being confident out there and attacking the strike zone and not giving the hitters too much credit. You have to attack them as much as they want to attack me. You learn from your past. It can be the best teacher for you. And I think it was. I knew guys would take pitches and try to get my pitch counts up. The main thing is location and keeping the ball down. I truly believe that. When you try and pitch instead of just throw, it really makes it easier for you. I think it's a big reason why I was successful this year. Baseball has so much failure in it. It's how you come back from it," Meyer said. "I'm not saying I had a perfect season, but it was definitely better than the last two seasons. I think that's been huge for me. When you go through failure, you're going to know how to deal with it, how to respond to it. I feel I went through quite a bit of failure, more than I wanted to, I grew from it, I got stronger, I'm a more mature baseball player because of it."
From Charlie Fliegel, The Nationals Review, 5/18/2011: "He has a complex delivery that has lead to serious control issues. He has issued plenty of walks, and may never be able to bring down the walk total enough to be a great pitcher. Keith Law mentions, though, that his command and control have improved, and there are positives in his delivery. To me, this means he may be a work in progress, but there is room for the right pitching coach to make him better. Still, many fear that he will be a walk machine. Keith Law’s summary was a good combo of the hopes and fears about Meyer: Meyer’s lack of track record hurts him, and even with the improved control he was walking a guy every other inning until his last few outings, but it’s top-10 or top-5 stuff with No. 1 starter upside. But if the Nats are looking for a starter, even if he’s great they may not get it. According to Kevin Goldstein at Baseball Prospectus: One scout summed him up best by saying, 'He’s either a number one, a shutdown closer, or doesn’t get out of Double-A.'"
From Matt Garrioch, MLB Bonus Baby, 5/13/2011: "Alex Meyer is an impressive pitcher on the mound. His fastball pops and his slider is just nasty but so is his delivery. He is so tall that if his mechanics just get off by a little bit, he could be a mess, but when he is on, his stuff is phenomenal. I don't think I could pull the trigger on him in the top 15 picks though."
From John Sickels, Minor League Ball, 3/30/2011: "Composite ERA in Kentucky games is about 4.75 so he is pitching quite well for context, although the walk rate is rather high. Mid-90s fastball and above-average curve stand out, but command and mechanical issues keep him from Gerrit Cole/Sonny Gray status. A certain first-round pick in most drafts, might drop to supplemental in this one but upside is impressive."
From Stephen Goff, Houston Examiner, 3/7/2011: "Despite his struggles, Meyer has tremendous growth potential and could be on the road to a successful major league career once he gains more confidence in his fastball location, slider, changeup and two-seam fastball, thus leading to greater consistency. He's a big, imposing right-handed pitcher who combines a 94-96 mph fastball with an above-average curveball, making him a classic, raw-power arm that utilizes a repetitive, low-effort tall delivery. 'I like to attack with the fastball,' Meyer said. 'I feel like it’s an out pitch. I feel like I have enough velocity on it to get by some guys. I throw a knuckle curveball. I try to stay on top of it to get more of a 12-6 action. There are some I hook a little bit and end up getting a slider action. It’s something I need to get more consistent at doing. I'm also starting to throw a better two-seam fastball and changeup. It has helped to change my game.'"

Follow @AlexMeyer17 on Twitter.

According to John Manuel of Baseball America, Meyer signed for a $2 million SB.

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Round 3: Matt Purke, LHP, Texas Christian University

(from USA Today)

Sean's one sentence analysis: The lefty starter fell to the third round due to injury concerns, but snagging him here was a great coup for the Nats; elite talent does not grow on trees.

Thoughts from the community: 
"Purke got hit hard in his initial AFL outings last fall but settled down with four straight scoreless outings. He held his own in two spring outings, but more importantly he seemed healthy. Purke features a low-to-mid 90s FB and a plus low-80s SL. Like Ross Detwiler, he has a history of dropping his arm slot and throwing across his body, flattening his stuff. He's set to begin the 2012 campaign in Potomac, and all indications at this point are that he'll be in the starting rotation." - Luke Erickson, (@nats_prospects)

Previous analysis and notes:
I was ecstatic with the pick when it happened. While Purke was obviously no guarantee to sign both because of his injury and his sophomore eligibility, it was the right place to take a risk.The Nats would have gotten a compensation pick at the end of the 3rd in 2012 if he didn't sign.
From John Sickels, Minor League Ball, 6/14/2011: "Huge wild card. Put up great numbers (1.71 ERA, 61/20 K/BB in 53 IP, 36 hits) despite injury issues and loss of velocity. Has sophomore leverage. If he looks good this summer, he could earn first round money, but my psychic powers say he heads back to college."
From Keith Law via Amanda Comak, The Washington Times, 6/7/2011: "I could craft you an explanation about how the time off cost him arm strength, and how he didn't have time to rehab the arm and regain both velocity and durability, and it would all make sense. I'm not dismissing the possibility that given time and the right strengthening program, Purke can again pitch like he did during his healthy and successful freshman year. But the bottom line is that pitchers with big price tags need to show big stuff, and Purke didn't do it in what is likely his last opportunity before the draft to show he's worth what he's expected to demand."
From John Manuel, Baseball America, 6/7/2011: "Purke was never quite right in 2011. He didn't pitch last summer or fall and wasn't able to recapture his '10 form in 2011. Purke's fastball hit the mid-90s last year and sat at average this year, and his stuff across the board was down, plus he missed time with arm issues. He was an unsigned first-rounder in 2009 and might be the toughest sign in this draft, considering he agreed to a $6 million deal in '09 before it was vetoed by the commissioner's office."

According to Jim Callis of Baseball America, Purke signed a Major League deal worth around $4.4 mil.

Friday, March 30, 2012

Round 1 (Supplemental): Brian Goodwin, OF, Miami Dade CC

(They named a team after Roger Bernadina?!? from Perfect Game)

No 2011 Stats

Sean's one sentence analysis: Toolsy in a good way, with a solid bat and plate discipline, speed and developing power.

Thoughts from the community: 
"Scouts believe Goodwin has the potential to have five tools that range from average to plus. Speed is his strongest tool, but he’s still learning to employ it on the basepaths and in center field. The Nats are said to have spent most of the instrux last fall trying to teach him to use his lower half to hit, a common problem for collegiate batters." Luke Erickson, (@nats_prospects)

"After an impressive freshman season in 2010 at the University of North Carolina, Goodwin went to the Cape Cod League that summer and starred for the Harwich Mariners, batting atop their lineup, playing center field, and hitting an impressive .281/.364/.360. After returning to Chapel Hill that fall, Goodwin was suspended from the team for an off-field incident, which led to his transferring to Miami-Dade College for his sophomore year and made him eligible for the 2011 draft. Goodwin started slowly at his new school, but turned it on closer to draft day to produce a .382/.492/.631 batting line, along with 16 stolen bases for the Sharks. Goodwin is a talented 5-tool player, with major league average or better tools across the board, and his hit tool is particularly advanced for his age. Although he needs polish, especially defensively in center field, and will likely move slowly through the Nationals’ farm system, Goodwin has the potential to be a fringe All-Star caliber center fielder in his prime, perhaps as soon as 2015." - Ryan Sullivan, (@natsgmdotcom)

Previous analysis and notes:
Goodwin started his college career at UNC, but was suspended for the 2011 season and subsequently transferred to Miami-Dade College.
Goodwin's stats in college:
2010 (UNC): .291/.411/.511, 66 H/227 AB, 47 R, 13 2B, 8 3B, 7 HR, 63 RBI, 7/9 SB, 45 BB/49 K
2011 (MDC): .382/.492/.631, 60 H/157 AB, 42 R, 11 2B, 2 3B, 8 HR, 37 RBI, 16/18 SB, 37 BB/??? K
From Matt Garrioch, MLB Bonus Baby, 6/17/2011: "Goodwin was a supplemental pick after being talked about as a 1st round talent, or even as high as the top pick in the 2012 draft when he was a freshman at North Carolina. After he was suspended from North Carolina, he went to Miami-Dade JC and did well, but didn't dominate. Some people see him as a future power hitting, speedy center fielder with an above average arm. I see him as a light hitting, patient hitter with good but not great speed and average ability in center field but more likely a left fielder. He is a good upside pick in this spot. His hit tool will decide his value long term."
From John Sickels, Minor League Ball, 6/14/2011: "Good speed, draws walks, power is developing. Main scout gripe is spotty defense but that should improve with experience."
From John Sickels, Minor League Ball/Baseball Nation, 6/7/2011: "Very toolsy outfielder with good speed, patience at the plate, and moderate power. Needs work on defense but high ceiling."
From Nathan Rode, Baseball America, 6/6/2011: "Goodwin has been compared to Jacque Jones with his average to plus tools across the board. He's a good hitter, showing patience and strength at the plate."
From Matt Grabusky, MLB Draft Guide, 6/5/2011: "Brian Goodwin is a top athlete and one of the most dynamic talents available in the 2011 draft. Goodwin is filled with potential offensively. He has a good approach at the plate and is willing to take a walk. He has plus bat speed. Goodwin’s swing is not geared to for hitting home runs, but he should be in the 10-15 home run range. He is also a threat to steal once he is on base. The only drawback for Goodwin is that he does tend to swing and miss a bit too often. Goodwin should be able to remain in center at the next level. He covers plenty of ground and has a plus arm. His breaks and routes need work...His game needs some polish, but there is plenty of potential here."
From Allan Simpson, Perfect Game USA, 6/1/2011: "Goodwin is unmistakably one of the elite athletes in the 2011 draft class, but his career to date has been marked by a number of twists and turns. His latest diversion has seen him spend his sophomore campaign at Florida’s Miami-Dade College after he was suspended in November for the 2011 season at North Carolina for violating university policy. He quickly emerged as the top prospect in the nation’s junior-college ranks and is a near-certain bet to be selected in the first round...Goodwin’s superior athleticism and maturing baseball skills make him an obvious first-round candidate, no matter what the draft year. He has all the raw tools to excel in the big leagues, and his combination of hitting skills, emerging power, superior speed and stellar defense makes him one of the best all-around outfield prospects in the 2011 draft. Goodwin is a 6.5-second runner with outstanding range in center field. He also has one of the top outfield arms in the class. Offensively, Goodwin has a quick, effortless lefthanded swing and stays inside the ball with a level, line-drive type swing. His raw strength enables him to generate bat speed and drive balls into the gaps, although his present approach at the plate limits his loft power. Goodwin was hobbled this spring by a hamstring issue initially, impacting his speed on the bases and in the outfield, but his entire game picked up as he regained full health...Goodwin is far from a finished product, however, and scouts say he’ll need to continue to refine both his approach at the plate and defense in center field. More than anything, he needs to develop more consistent breaks on balls hit his way in order to settle in as an everyday center fielder...If teams are convinced he can play center field over the long haul, he will be an overwhelming favorite to be the first junior-college player drafted in June, though he tentatively plans to return to North Carolina for his junior year if the draft doesn’t work out for him."
From Josh G, MLB Bonus Baby, 5/28/2011: "Goodwin is a tremendous athlete who was expected to go higher in the draft after being kicked off the North Carolina baseball team. He is a very good athlete though his instincts are still a bit lacking. He is committed to South Carolina next year."
From Matt Garrioch, MLB Bonus Baby, 5/13/2011: "Some people will tell you that Brian Goodwin could be a potential #1 overall pick if he doesn't sign this year and plays at South Carolina next year. Don't believe them. He won't hit much and the draft next year isn't as deep as this one, by any means, but it isn't a paltry class either. I don't have a crystal ball but I’m just stating my opinion. I’m saying Goodwin won’t hit enough to be the #1 overall pick. That’s not much of a limb to go out on. I’m sure everyone has favorites and guys they don’t like as much as others. Goodwin is on my overrated list."
From, 5/13/2011: "Goodwin possesses many of the same tools from a couple of years back. The left-handed hitter should be above average at the plate, with a good approach and the ability to square balls up. He's got future above-average power to all fields as well. An above-average runner, he uses his speed well on the bases, where he should be a basestealer, and in the outfield. He's got plenty of arm strength and a solid glove -- one that could work in center, but might be best suited to left field when all is said and done. He's got enough bat to play a corner, and the glimpses of all five tools he shows should have him in the first-round conversation."
From Nick Faleris, Diamond Scape Scouting, 1/21/2011: "Goodwin is slightly more refined, but like (UConn OF George) Springer needs to quiet his approach at the plate and tighten-up his game across the board." Faleris noted Goodwin as having the best arm out of all draft-eligible outfielders.
From John Kilma, Baseball Beginnings, 10/16/2010: "Left-handed hitter who has potential to become a very good player. Smooth swing, firm front, good hands, nice extension, confident in hands."

According to Jon Heyman of SI, the Nats have signed Brian Goodwin to a deal with a $3 million SB.

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Round 4: Kylin Turnbull, LHP, Santa Barbara CC


2011 Stats: 

Sean's one sentence analysis: It's difficult to find lefties that throw hard like Turnbull, and at 6'5", he still has room to add velocity.

Thoughts from the community: "Turnbull is a "projectability pick" based largely on his long, lean frame. His fastball velocity, however, is famously erratic (e.g. can range from 86 to 94 on back-to-back outings). He also throws an inconsistent slider and slow (80-84) splitter. He's been drafted twice now, so the Nats are not alone in wondering what this raw talent might become with some professional tutelage." - Luke Erickson, Nationals Prospects (@nats_prospects)

Previous analysis and notes:
Turnbull threw 80 innings in 2011, striking out 92 batters with just a 2.47 ERA at Santa Barbara CC. The 2010 30th round pick by the White Sox is a reliever whose fastball reached the mid 90's in MPH this year. Roundup: "Turnbull improved his Draft stock after the White Sox took him in the 30th round last year. The 6-foot-4 southpaw throws a fastball around 93 mph and had a 2.47 ERA this season."
From John Sickels, Minor League Ball, 6/14/2011: "Big projectable lefty put up excellent numbers this year, velocity is average but slider and splitter have potential and his velocity could pick up further. Sleeper pick. Oregon commitment."
From Nathan Rode, Baseball America, 6/7/2011: "Faded down the stretch but has lean, loose frame at 6-foot-4, 195. Average fastball but has touched 93-94. Average splitter and fringy slider."
On 6/2/2011, John Sickels named Turnbull as a player he was interested in for his Shadow Draft.
On 5/13/2011, Aaron Fitt of Baseball America tweeted, "Kylin Turnbull's command has been spotty, but he's gotten Ks with fastball, SL (78-81) & SP. Heard he's touched 94 this yr, but 87-91 today."
From John Klima, Baseball Beginnings, 7/3/2010: "A GOOD GET IF YOU CAN SIGN HIM: Santa Barbara City College left-hander Kylin Turnbull threw very well this spring. Many scouts who saw him felt there is much projection left in his arm." (Note that this is from last year's draft).

According to Jim Callis of Baseball America, 4th round pick LHP Kylin Turnbull of Santa Barbara CC has signed for $325,000, about $100,000 above the slot recommendation for the pick.

Friday, March 23, 2012

Round 5: Matt Skole 3B, Georgia Tech

Baseball-Reference                                                                                                                 FanGraphs
MiLB                                                                                                                             Georgia Tech Bio

2011 Stats:
1 Season723192724379231548214252.290.382.438.82011921040
Provided by View Original Table
Generated 3/22/2012.

Sean's one sentence analysis: Has the bat to be an average major league 3B and the glove to be an average major league 1B with the potential to do a little more.

"Matt Skole can hit. The question is: Can he field enough to stick at 3B? He looked bad the two games I saw him play last summer but also drilled a moonshot HR. A move to 1B or LF is probably in order, regardless of offseason stories stating otherwise." - Luke Erickson, Nationals Prospects (@nats_prospects)

"If Matt Skole were more likely to stick at third base, he would be a very interesting prospect. Already with good physicality, he seems destined to continue to add to his tall, wide frame as he matures. That will further limit his fringy range, and given his mediocre actions, a move to first base is probable. Offensively, things are brighter with his combination of bat speed and strength. The offensive requirement for first base will make it an uphill climb, but Skole could emerge as a solid regular." - Jeff Reese, Bullpen Banter (@ioffridus)

"Matt Skole entered his junior season poised to be drafted in the top few rounds after two impressive seasons at Georgia Tech and a solid performance for Falmouth in the Cape Cod League that summer. Unfortunately Skole only hit 9 home runs last season as he struggled to adjust to the new composite bats introduced to college baseball, and scouts questioned if he would have enough power with a wood bat to be a starting corner infielder, allowing him to slip to the Nationals in Round 5. Possessing a massive frame and limited athleticism, there are legitimate concerns if he can be an adequate defender at third base, because if not, it is questionable if his bat profiles at first base. A left-handed hitter with power and a good batting eye, Skole should move quickly because of his experience playing in the ACC: his ceiling is that of a starting major league baseball third baseman, but ultimately, is more likely destined to be a bench player at the infield corners.” - Ryan Sullivan, (@natsgmdotcom)

Previous analysis and notes:
Hit 47 homers in 3 years at Georgia Tech, but only 10 came in 2011. Maintained the plate discipline improvements he made between his freshman and sophomore years this year. Briefly suspended in 2011 season for a DUI in late February. Aside from that, Skole is a solid pick and could move fairly quickly through the organization. At 3B, he would be a good hitter with a bad glove. At 1B/LF, he would be an average hitter with a mediocre glove. Intriguing prospect for now due to the power. Roundup: "The left-handed-hitting Skole hit 47 home runs in his three-year college career. The Rangers selected his brother, Jake, with the 15th overall pick out of high school last year."
From John Sickels, Minor League Ball, 6/14/2011: "Strong left-handed power, good strike zone judgment, opinions split on whether he can remain at third base, but the bat looks good."
From Mike Newman, Scouting the Sally, 4/20/2011: "Brother of former 1st round pick Jake Skole...Slightly below average athlete overall; Moves well for a man his size...More compact stroke than most left-handed hitters his size...Patient hitter; Rarely chases pitches outside the strike zone – even against mid-90′s velocity...See more potential as an average/on base hitter than true power hitting threat...Present speed is below average and is unlikely to improve...Future defensive home is uncertain...Showed a lack of confidence at third base; Shied away from cutting ball off in the 5/6 hole...Looks more comfortable at first base; Prospect status takes a definite hit if he settles in at 1B permanently...Has made a few starts behind the plate this season."
From Matt Grabusky, MLB Draft Guide, 4/13/2011: "Skole will go as far as his bat will take him. He is a patient hitter with plus power. He does have a head tug that is often mentioned and needs to be corrected if he is to reach his potential. Skole has a plus arm, but that is his only strenth in the field. His range is limited and his hands are suspect. A move to 1st or, possibly, left is on the horizon."
Matt Garrioch of MLB Bonus Baby had Skole listed 95th on his draft list on 6/3/2011 and 137th back on 11/22/2010.
Brian Foley of College Baseball Daily had Skole listed 59th on his draft list on 11/20/2010.

Skole signed with the Nats on June 16, 2011.

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Round 6: Taylor Hill, RHP, Vanderbilt

Baseball-Reference                                                                                                                 FanGraphs
MiLB                                                                                                                                  Vanderbilt Bio

2011 stats:
2011 22 Auburn NYPL A- WSN 0 2 .000 3.16 9 5 0 0 0 0 31.1 32 12 11 1 3 0 27 3 0 2 128 1.117 9.2 0.3 0.9 7.8 9.00
1 Season 0 2 .000 3.16 9 5 0 0 0 0 31.1 32 12 11 1 3 0 27 3 0 2 128 1.117 9.2 0.3 0.9 7.8 9.00
Provided by View Original Table
Generated 3/21/2012.

Sean's One sentence analysis: Hill has decent stuff and control and could make it as either a back-of-the-rotation starter or a solid middle reliever.

Thoughts from the community:
"Hill began the season in the Auburn bullpen but finished in the rotation, posting a losing record (0-2) but strong peripherals (0.9BB, 7.8K, 9:1 K:BB) in limited innings (31.1 IP). Throws a SI/SL/CH combo and gets a lot of grounders. Current velocity is 88-92, but scouts like his size and believe there’s room for improvement." - Luke Erickson, Nationals Prospects (@nats_prospects)

"Hill has been a fixture in the middle of Vanderbilt's weekend rotation for the past couple of years. Unlike most bearing that title, he does not have an impact arm. Hill is a big, durable starter who will control an array of average pitches and chew up innings. Whether he has enough swing and miss in his arsenal to ultimately crack a major league rotation is still up in the air. Hill should move quickly and be ready to provide value in whatever role the Nationals need him to fill: back end starter, swing man, or middle reliever." - Jeff Reese, Bullpen Banter (@ioffridus)

Previous analysis and notes:
Drafted in the 30th round by the Indians last year. Hill was listed as the 173rd best player in the draft by Baseball America. Looks like a solid arm with the ability to make it as a middle reliever. Roundup: "Hill improved his Draft stock with his senior season at Vanderbilt after the Indians took him in the 30th round last year. Hill started 16 games and went 5-1 with a 2.84 ERA for the Commodores."
From John Sickels, Minor League Ball, 6/14/2011: "88-92 sinker, good slider and changeup, throws strikes, knows how to pitch. Possible fourth starter but a nice value selection."
From A Scout's View, 6/7/2011: "A bit of a slinger, good arm strength and will show you a 92-93 on occasion...pitches well down in the zone and around 90-91...fb up tends to straighten out and slider piece is just ok...command and control are good enough to be a good middle guy in the ML or a poor man's 5th man in the ML rotation...doesn't have any real knock out pitch, but he gets people out."
From John Klima, Baseball Beginnings, 3/12/2010: "Hill should have more power than he does now. That’s the factor that might help make Hill a better pro than a college pitcher. He has a barrel chest and broad shoulders and average arm speed, but with the proper combination of conditioning and instruction, he could be a better pro than the draft round he will likely fall in. In other words, he’s a tweener, but there might be more to work with than meets the eye....he won’t blow anyone away despite a frame that indicates there should be more power, but an improved change-up should help level that playing field. Right now I would conclude Hill has a touch more power than he is presently showing, but that alone will not make for enough power. His control and command on all pitches is serviceable enough to where Hill could be a decent guy if he can find a touch more power and a signature secondary pitch. Conclusion: This is a good draft pick to send to a good pro pitching coach."
From Jeff Ellis, Indians Prospect Insider, 6/8/2010: "Taylor Hill is the definition of a team player; he has pitched all over in the pen and as a starter. He seems destined for the pen where he excelled a year ago in the Cape. He has done well this year as a starter, but the previous two years had been solid but unimpressive. Hill has 2 plus pitches with a fastball that has good sink that is in the low 90’s. This pitch is offset by his low 80’s slider which also grades out as plus. He has a changeup in the high 70’s, but it is his weakest pitch by far. His mechanics need cleaned up, but he has the big body and durability you would want in a pitcher. He was rated as a Top 200 player by PGCrosschecker (in 2010)."

Hill signed with the Nats on July 14, 2011.