Augusta Polar Bears
Needs: OF, RP
Try as I might, it was extremely difficult finding any real weaknesses on this Augusta team. Whatever holes existed on the big team, dengodd already had some very talented youngsters in line to plug them. In the end, it was determined that he needed another solid arm in the bullpen to offset aging studs JP Gonzalez and Albert Jackson. The depth in his outfield was also found to be a bit lacking, so the addition of another player there would be advisable. All in all though, this was just nit-picking.
Draft Expectations: Low-Moderate
Although he only has 6 picks in the first 5 rounds, and doesn't pick until no. 23 overall, having 2 picks in the first round for dengodd is like giving Picasso a second paint brush. I would expect no less than for dengodd to find 3 gems in this draft.
Being in the bottom of the league in player payroll, means that dengodd has plenty of flexibility in preparing for the draft. As so many others have done, he has completely sacrificed his scouting budget in one of the 3 main areas. dengodd chose to sacrifice the college talent pool. As such, he was able to max out his advance scoutiing, and his high school scouting. Considering he left himself with only 7 million in his prospect budget, I found it interesting that he sent 12 million to his international scouting department.
Round 1 Pick 23 RP Alex Butcher
Butcher falls into that category of "Elite Closers" that can be chosen in the late 1st round. Once he reaches the ML, he will be dominant. He has pin-point accuracy in his pitches, and his all-world left/right splits will largely offset the only blemish in his talents, which is allowing plenty of balls in the air. This will lead to a few long balls along the way, but not enough to really hurt his effectiveness.
ML Projection: 60-70 IP/40-50 SV/.180-.220 OAV/1.70-2.30 ERA
Round 1 Supp Pick 51 SP Felix Lee
Another fine pick-up, this one being even more impressive than his first, considering it came at pick no. 51, Lee will prove to be a solid addition to an already outstanding young rotation that is developing in Augusta. Now if Maine only had the fan base to actually appreciate the possible championship team that is emerging there! Lee is a typical sinkerball pitcher of the same style as Derek Lowe, who will frustrate hitter after hitter, making him the perfect no. 3 or no. 4 pitcher in a rotation. In this rotation however, it is already so talented, he may find himself anchoring the tail-end.
ML Projection: 200-220 IP/15-17 W/.240-.260 OAV/3.20-3.50 ERA
Round 2 Pick 79 SS Ryan Lamb
About what you would expect from no. 79 overall, Lamb would make a better 3B than SS, and doesn't have strong enough hitting to start at any ML position outside of SS. He will probably either serve as a utility infielder, or an emergency call-up when needed.
ML Projection: Utility Infielder
Round 3 Pick 111 CF Wayne Dickson
Signability issues makes any examination of his talents irrelevant, but you gotta love that range!
Round 4 Pick 143 RF Chuck Stewart
A speedster with not enough hitting to make a significant mark in the bigs. May get a few late-season call-ups just to add some speed on the bench.
Round 5 Pick 175 C Bip Davies
Nice find at pick no. 175! Davies is a more than capable defensive catcher who can do some damage with the bat as well. Don't be surprised to see him make a solid career for himself as a ML backup.
ML Projection: 150-200 AB/5 HR/.260-.280 BA/0 SB
Hidden Gems: SP Red Morgan?
Overall Grade: A-
Excellent picks with both selections in the first round, coupled with a beauty of a find in round 5 with Bip Davies, re-assures that dengodd still has the touch.