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Looking Ahead to June’s Draft

With a woeful week hopefully in the rear view mirror of the Brew Crew faithful I find it therapeutic to look ahead and breed some optimism after a staggering road trip thus far (to say the least).

The MLB First Year Player Draft is just about a month away and it’s never too early to speculate on what Doug Melvin and company might be planning as we approach the event (June 6-8).

The Brewers have taken RHPs with their last two first round picks, though only signing one of them due to Dylan Covey’s 2010 decision to attend the University of San Diego instead of signing with the club.

side note..Covey also deals with a serious diabetes condition which he has noted to have had a serious impact on him and his decision.

By most projections, they will have their choice at a field of 4-5 RHPs (again) projected to go between picks 8 and 14 overall (Brewers picking 12th) and seemingly 1 second-tier (within the same pick range/value) position player prospect in the person of UConn outfielder George Springer.

Springer has struggled just a bit in his 2011 collegiate season which is really what has dropped his stock from what could have otherwise been a sure top 8 pick (still could be due to the unpredictability of these drafts). But with the Brewers relative deficiency of developing position players at the lower levels, it’s likely that with the 12th pick they will indeed go the route of George and his Torii Hunter-ish upside.

The position of SS is a more obvious issue and it is also one of this year’s first round draft prospects. There are a few who fit the first round billing, though it is unlikely that their value will find Milwaukee in the first round. However, just so they are indeed mentioned, top 30 SS prospects include the highly touted All-American Francisco Lindor (projected to land in Cleveland by most “experts”), UNC’s Levi Michael, and Florida High Schooler Javier Baez (both late first round projections).

Again, the unpredictability of even one pick could change everything and RHP’s who aren’t named Strasburg have become the unsexy linemen-esque pick of the MLB draft. Due to all of the circumstances that do surround the Brewers in their draft “needs”, it is completely logical and fun to take a look at Springer’s abilities, and possibly think of his upside-ridden skill set replacing those of the inefficient Carlos Gomez some time soon – if you could stomach the scout-speak that is.

Just for kicks, he indeed averages an 1.138 OPS in his college years (thus far), with a career high of 33 stolen bases last season (22 and counting this year). Weakness in the K:BB department  though that’s not all that unlikely for developing players with raw tools.

Due to the varying levels of the aformentioned players, the links used in this particular included a few different points of reference – The Baseball Cube, Baseball America, and Perfect Game USA  were all helpful in my research in addition to regular appearance of Baseball-Reference.