As much as it pains me to link anything written by Jon Heyman, he did happen to put together mock draft worth mentioning. I say worth mentioning because, for all of the things that Heyman says that make me cringe, he does have some sources, and his prediction for the Cardinals is someone we haven’t really discussed before: West Virginia “shortstop” Jedd Gyorko. I don’t particularly think Gyorko is first round material, but I would not be at all shocked to see the Cardinals draft him in the supplemental round, either with the 46th or 50th overall pick.
His stats are pretty eye-popping.
While Gyorko has put up some outstanding power numbers for WVU, he isn’t expected to be a major power threat in the majors. Most scouts grade his power tool in the 40-50 range on the 20-80 scale, meaning he should be good for 12-14 homeruns per season. For a shortstop, that would be just fine, but he’s been given the dreaded “bad body” tag by scouts. In other words, he’s sort of a George Costanza looking player on the diamond – Short, slow and stocky (not balding, as far as I can tell). Some think he can play at 3B, but his arm strength isn’t that great, and he might not be quick enough to play at 2B.
He doesn’t have to hit 20-30 homers if he can get on base often enough. Just judging by this year’s numbers he has a pretty discerning eye at the plate. Scouts’ expectation is that he hits somewhere in the .275-.290 range if he reaches his full potential. If he’s drawing walks and not a total butcher in the infield, that’s not a terrible profile. Here’s the usual YouTubery:
Just do yourself a favor and skip toward the end, there’s a lot of him sitting there taking pitches.
Baseball America ranks him 39th overall in their top 200, Seiler has him 40th, Law has him all the way down at 59th. With 2008 being the “not selling jeans” draft, I could see Gyorko being a player of interest to the Cardinals given his success, particularly if they think he can play second base. It should be noted Gyorko’s also had a lot of success in the Cape this past year.
I’m fine with him in the sandwich round, but I’d be pretty darn unhappy if the Cardinals took him 25th overall.
Fun name, Jedd Gyorko.
Update: A tweet from the good folks at CollegeSplits.com
Scouts are skeptical of Gyorko’s D at short. FWIW, our metric has +4 (regressed) this year, +0 last yr, and +0 at 2b in ’08. #mlbdraft
So maybe scouts are overstating his defensive potential because of his body type. If he’s average to plus now at SS, there’s no reason to believe he can’t be a decent 2B down the road. Ronnie Belliard didn’t have the best body type in the world, either. For his career, Belliard has an UZR/150 of -1. That doesn’t really hurt a team.