After selecting several of the very good questions from the thread, below you’ll find the answers from erik, fewgoodcards and picklefork.
I’m splitting this up into 2 parts because there’s so much great information here. The first part will consist of 5 questions that are more specific to who the Cardinals could, should and will pick this year. The second set (later this afternoon) will be more generalized draft questions and less about the magical #19.
Also, each of the responses came back to me so that you’re getting independent reactions that are playing off of each other as little as possible.
1) The middle infield still looks like a weakness within the system. If you accept that premise and Grant Green falls to #19, will the Cardinals draft him? Should they?
- The Cardinals love Summer League performers, and everyone agreed Green was the pick of the litter last year in summer ball in the Cape. He got off to slow start but turned it on as the season progressed, but the power never was fully there and his walk rate was less than what you’d like, at 9%. I’ve heard mixed reviews on his glove. ~erik
- It depends on who is on the board. If a guy like Jacob Turner or Matthew Purke falls, I would rather have them. If not and Green is there, he is probably the best prospect on the board. In that scenario, I would say you have to take him. That would give you 3 first round shortstops in the last 5 years, and I would say you would have a good shot at filling both middle infield spots over he next few years. ~FGC
I would say yes on Green for a couple of reasons. He has 4 tool potential, with a 5th possible (power) as he develops and fills out. A potential 20/20 SS who can stick defensively can be such a value not only if he can make your club, but the possibilities he presents in trade. Another reason is the Cards seeming preference for players who come with a track record of performing in power conferences and showing star power in Summer showcases and leagues. Green has put up solid numbers in the very solid Pac-10 and was the best of the best at the Cape last Summer. He was a top 5 pick to begin the year, even if you think he was a bit overrated, at #19 the value maybe just too good to pass up. ~picklefork
2) The LHP the Cardinals are most likely to draft is:
- Mike Minor is the most likely LHP the Cards draft, b/c he is the safest one of the group. ~picklefork
- Rex Brothers or Mike Minor. ~erik
- Mike Minor. He isn’t the sexy pick, but he is a very solid pick. He has 4 pretty good pitches, good control, and a track record as good as any pitcher in the draft. Rex Brothers is probably the back-up plan from the college ranks. If they do go high school, I think the guy is Chad James. ~FGC
3) Since it has been over 8 years since the Cardinals have taken a high school pitcher in the 1 round, do you see them taking one now given the possibility of a talented HS arm falling to #19? Who is the most likely HS arm to be drafted by the Cardinals?
- I think it is a definite possibility. The rumor is 2 years ago they were going to take Blake Beavan, and I don’t think they would hesitate to take a high school pitcher this year if someone they like is on the board. Luhnow has also been quoted several times saying they aren’t afraid to take a high school guy and wait for him to develop because of the depth in the upper minors. In fact he said on the Bernie show on Thursday that there are 5 high school pitchers close to the top of their board that they believe can be top of the rotation starters and they wouldn’t hesitate to take one. Now that could all just be a smoke screen, but he hasn’t really tried to do that before. I think Chad James is the most likely to be that guy. He is the most talented high school pitcher likely to be around that won’t be asking for a huge bonus. He has a low 90′s fastball that touches 95, a plus curve, a good change, and solid mechanics. There is really nothing about James that would lead me to believe that they wouldn’t take him. Of course Luhnow did use the number 5, and that probably means Matzek, Turner, Wheeler, Purke, and Miller are the guys unless of course we are playing signability again. ~FGC
- If 2009 isn’t the year to draft a HS pitcher, then I am not sure when is. It’s a solid HS crop, the top college arms should be off the board, the Cards have righted the system and its depth has allowed them to take more chances. The fact the Cards do not have a sandwich pick in this years draft also free’s up roughly 800K to 1M that they normally budget, since the Cards have had a supplemental pick each year under Luhnow. So the draft sets up that way, the need for a higher ceiling guy is evident and the budget allows for the Cards to take a higher priced talent and reward their previous solid draft by going pure upside. Most likely to be drafted would be either Chad James or Tyler Skaggs b/c both are considered near slot signs. ~ picklefork
- KLaw says they’re looking at all lefties, HS and college. Matt Purke might be available, but he carries a heavy price tag and his mechanics are a little funky looking to me, so I think the Cardinals will stay away. Chad James could be a good fit if he is still available. ~ erik
4) Do any of the following make it to the Cardinals second round pick — Garrett Gould, David Renfroe, Bryan Berglund?
- I believe out of Gould, Renfroe and Berglund, the only one that has a chance is Begrland b/c his “stuff” isnt overwhelming. Gould is likely a plan B for someone early and Renfroe’s character and David Wright type of skill set with probably get him drafted earlier then BA’s rankings. ~picklefork
- Gould is squarely in the 2nd tier of high school righties and will likely hear his name called at the end of the first round or in the sandwich round. I think there is a decent change Renfroe and Berglund are there. Renfroe is an interesting case however because he is supposedly asking for a first round bonus. Berglund should be available and is likely a slot sign. ~FGC
5) Is Derek McCallum, 2B for Minnesota, still available in the third round? Is taking him in the second round a ‘reach’?
- The third is probably the high end for McCallum who I see going anywhere from the 3rd to the 5th round. I do believe he would be a reach in round 2. He has a nice bat and showed last summer that he could hit with wood although he wasn’t playing in a great league talent wise. McCallum does have value though as a left-handed hitting 2nd baseman with some pop. ~FGC