Archive for the ‘Feeling the Draft’ Category

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Well that didn’t take too long. The Houston Astros officially confirm the signing first overall draft pick Mark Appel. The Astros did not publicize the terms of the but Jim Callis of Baseball America believes the terms are in place and — dundundunnnnnn — below slot.

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MLB’s amateur draft is a tricky devil. Unlike other, more TV-friendly drafts in basketball and football, there are no “household names” most years. Even then, Bryce Harper and Stephen Strasburg were largely unknown commodities when they were taken first overall. College baseball grows more popular and receives more airtime on ESPN but, for most fans, the players their team will select on Thursday are blank slates.

Add the long and winding road currently standing between more draft picks and the Major Leagues and you have a largely bewildering process. To say nothing of the nebulous idea of “signability”. In 2012, signability is a different concept compared to years past, as the draft cap limits teams from blowing their brains out with every pick.

The vagaries of the draft are many, so read Wendy Thurms’ two part series on Fangraphs (here and here) to get up to speed. I know I will be. Hit this Baseball America link for the total draft pools for all 30 teams.

On to the players: there is no Bryce Harper in this draft. Mostly because there is no Bryce Harper in any draft other than the 2010 draft in which he was selected. There might be a Mike Trout, a cold-weather player lurking at the bottom of the first round, but there it remains highly unlikely there is another Mike Trout just lying around anywhere. This is the irresistible appeal of the baseball draft. They aren’t all diamonds but it is almost all rough.

What remains is a group of talented players who could foreseeably go in just about any order, if you believe mock drafts and industry whispers. Let’s try and figure out who is who.

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