Little Rock Minute Men
Needs: 3B, SP As is expected, safetyman has very few real needs to fill. SP's of an elite variety are always a good thing, but overall safetyman appears to have the natural progression through attrition and development well covered.
Draft Expectation: Very High
8 picks in the top 5 rounds including 4 first rounders. The only drawback is that none of the first rounders are above pick no. 30. That's ok though because there can still be some decent talent found in the supplemental picks.
Draft Preparation: Safetyman has tailored his budget to fit his draft plans very snuggly. The IFA market has been sacrificed completely leaving the Minute Men with evenly distributed funding for both his college and high school scouts. Safetyman has also spent highly into advanced scouting to get an accurate picture of the skills of the prospects.
Round 1 Pick 30 SP/RP Rey Camilli
Not blessed with excessive amounts of stamina or durability, Camilli may be best suited for a long relief role. With exceptional command of his top 3 pitches, and equivalent effectiveness against both left and righthanded hitters, he still has great value and importance on the pitching staff. If safetyman finds his rotation in a bind, he can bring Camilli in for an emergency start and get 5 strong innings. At pick number 30 he is a solid choice.
ML Projection: 100 IP/6-8 W/.230-.240 OAV/2.50-2.80 ERA
Round 1 Supp Pick 40 SS Joey Rudolph
Personally, with shortstops who have range and glove ratings below 80, I like to move them to 3B. We'll see what safetyman does with Rudolph. At the plate, Rudolph hits well for a shortstop, but is a bit below par for a 3B. His true calling may come as an extremely versatile utility player. A good supplemental 1st rounder.
ML Projection: 25 HR/.275 BA/5-10 SB
Round 1 Supp Pick 45 C Melvin Rose
A gem of a find at no. 45, Rose is the player who many other teams should have been looking for by this point in the draft. As a catcher, his low durability is not an issue as most teams already carry a more than capable backup at all times. His defense is as good, if not better, than most ML starting catchers, and his offensive ability is all-world. Add a makeup rating that is a coach's dream and you have the player who may be that missing link to take you to the promised land.
ML Projection: 120 G/30-35 HR/.340 BA/0 SB
Round 1 Supp Pick 53 SP/RP Gill Prokopec
A similar situation to that of Rudolph, Prokopec could be a vital link between the starters and the short relief, providing spot start duty where necessary. A trend is beginning to develop here where safetyman seems to be picking up numerous players with extremely high makeup ratings, which is a pretty good philosophy moving forward.
ML Projection: 130-150 IP/8-12 W/.240 OAV/2.50-2.70 ERA
Round 3 Pick 95 2B Norman Stevenson
I'm going to have to remember the name Bo Herzner for the future. This is the name of Stevenson's agent who talked Stevenson into asking for a signing bonus higher than Little Rock's 1st selection Camilli, and he actually got it. I'm thinking Safetyman presumed Stevenson would thumb his nose at the offer, and safety would simply get another 3rd round pick next year. Obviously, that didn't happen. Stevenson does however represent pretty good value in the 3rd round. He has great range and baserunning ability, and is also a good contact hitter. He may find time as a utility player on some teams.
ML Projection: 5 HR/.260-.270 BA/20 SB
Round 3 Pick 113 1B Felipe Chavez
At first glance, he does not appear to bring much, but he does have a bat that can do some damage. We may see him make some spot appearances as a pinch hitter, or filling in at 1B.
ML Projection: Utility player
Round 4 Pick 145 RF Billy King
Similar to Chavez, but should hit ceiling at AAA.
ML Projection: Emergency replacement
Round 5 Pick 177 RP Jim Kouzmanoff
Capable of putting up very limited numbers of quality ML relief innings. In round 5, Kouzmanoff is the type of player an owner hopes to find.
ML Projection: 40 IP/2-3 W/.250 OAV/5 SV/3.20-3.60 ERA
Hidden Gems: none foreseeable
Overall Grade: A+
safetyman seemed to spend the whole draft picking up the players that everyone else was missing. C Melvin Rose may be the most underrated player in the draft. If he can be pushed to 120 games per season and get spelled by a solid backup, Little Rock will have a catching tandem that is the envy of the league. In summation, after waiting until pick number 30 to make his first selection, safetyman may have put in the best performance of this draft.