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June 7, 2005

The Draft
by SG

There's not much left to say about the Yankees, 2-1 losers last night. Carl Pavano made one bad pitch, and Ben Sheets managed to shut the Yankees down. A late rally fell a run short when Captain Clutch ended the game again. With things looking bleak on the major league front for now, I figured I'd throw up something about the big news from yesterday, which was the June entry draft. I don't know where Fabian is, and I'm not really a huge prospect maven like him, so I'll just throw up the list of draftees and the scouting reports from available). Hopefully Fabian will come by with a more detailed look at some of these players later.

Round 1
C.J. Henry ss Putnam City HS, Oklahoma City OK

COMMENT: Built similar to Alex Rodriguez. Similar kinds of ability. Puts some strength into a slightly uppercut swing. Home run power from alley to alley. Quick and agile in the infield w/ sure hands. Likes to run. Good instincts on the base paths. Makes everything look easy.

Round 2
J. Brent Cox rhp U. of Texas TX

COMMENT: Large frame. Strong, lean mature, proportioned build. Mostly FB 87-88 from side-arm slot, hard run & heavy sink when down. Short, tight slurve-slider. Feel for change-up.

Round 3
Brett Gardner OF College of Charleston SC

COMMENT: Medium-large frame, compact body. Well-built. Solid, muscular, well-defined. Works to stay on top of ball. Gap power. Gift of raw speed. Accurate arm. Patrols CF, jumps w/ direct routes. Plus athlete.

Round 4
Lance Pendleton rhp Rice U. TX

COMMENT: Physically similar to Orel Hersheiser. Loose, quick arm brings low-90s heat that tails into RHH. CB has 12-6 break, tight, quick at the end. Adding circle change to his repetoire. Pitches w/ aggressive demeanor.

Round 5
Zach Kroenke lhp U. of Nebraska NE

COMMENT: Tall, ML pitchers frame. Sloping shoulders. Strong thighs and legs. FB runs from 88-90 mph. Commands both sides of the plate. Strikes out hitters. Slider w/ tight, sharp rotation is his out pitch.

Round 6
Doug Fister rhp Fresno State U. CA

COMMENT: Extra-large frame. Tall & thin. Long, lean muscles. Loose, clean arm action. Fluid w/ good extention. 87-89 w/ downplane, late run & sink. Circle change w/ FB arm speed, fade & sink. Keeps hitters off balance w/ four-pitch mix.

Round 7
Garrett Patterson LHP U. of Oklahoma OK

COMMENT: Large frame. Broad shoulders. Thick body, legs. Similar to Denny Neagle. Power southpaw. Loose arm. FB velocity consistently above avg., occasional better w/ riding life. CB rotation tight at times, 3/4 downer break. Physically mature.

Round 8
Austin Jackson OF Ryan HS, Denton, Texas TX

COMMENT: Tall frame. Well proportioned, lean body. Athletic ability in CF like Tori Hunter. Long, arcing power swing w/ full extension. Adequate arm strength. Makes accurate throws. Loose, flexible actions. Quickness. Athletic ability.

Round 9
James Cooper of Loyola Marymount U. CA

Round 10
Kyle Anson LF Texas St. U TX

Round 11
William Horne rhp U Florida FL

COMMENT: Tall, lean, wiry build, like Kris Benson. FB mostly 88-89 mph w/ slight sink down in zone. Loose out front, w/ whip-like arm action. Uses cut FB as a slider, quick, late, sharp break, best pitch. Around the strike zone, keeps ball down.

Round 12
Joseph Muich C Wichita St. U KS

Round 13
Karl Amonite 1B Auburn U. AL

COMMENT: Built like John Olerud w/ nice approach at plate. Chance to hit for some power. Ball jumps off bat. Fifth year senior looking for chance in pro ball.

Round 14

Round 15
Joshua Schmidt rhp U Pacific CA

Round 16
Christopher Malec 2B UC Santa Barbara CA

COMMENT: Compact frame. Short batting stroke who hits to all fields. Potential to hit for power. Works both ends of the double play well. Hard-nosed player. Good, confident attitude.

Round 17
Keaton Everitt rhp U Washington WA

Round 18
Joseph Burke C St. Johns U NY

COMMENT: Solid build. Evenly proportioned. Similar build to Jeff Kent. Bat speed, turns on good FB. Mostly level cut. Drives ball into gaps. Good foot speed for catcher. Solid baseball instincts. Handles staff well. Leader by example. Good athlete w/ INF & OF experience.

Kind of an odd draft so far. Aside from high-ceiling guys like Henry and Jackson, they seemed to focus on college players without much upside. Maybe the Yankees read Moneyball a few years too late or something. Jackson is likely going to be a tough sign, but if they can lure him away from college he can probably turn this draft from mediocre to decent. It's also possible that the Yankees realized that using college kids to fill roles on the team will allow them to avoid buying bench players and subs and middle relievers for millions of dollars, which would then allow them to spend their money more astutely on premium players. Then again, this is the Yankees, and it's possible that they just wanted guys as close to the majors as possible that they can use for trade chits down the line.