Needs: C, 1B, 3B, SS, OF
Behind the plate, Miguel Martinez just doesn't have what it takes to be a ML catcher. Young Jesus Soto is capable of filling the role, but he desperately needs time to develop, and he will need help. Davey Gardel also represents a weak option at 1B, so a much bigger bat is needed there. 2B is well covered, but 3B and SS are in need of new blood. I also have to ask, why isn't Miguel Goya up in the bigs playing 1B? The outfield is in total disarray, however jlarsons does have prospects in the minors capable of doing a better job than the group on the big team. They just need some developmental time. jlarsons also has the players within his system to have a capable starting rotation, and an excellent bullpen. He just has to re-structure what he has to bring out their full effectiveness.
Draft Expectations: Moderate
Similar to New Orleans, jlarsons has 6 picks in the first 5 rounds, including 2 in the first round. His first pick is number 5 overall, which he needs to make count considering his task at hand.
Buffalo is just above the league average for player payroll, meaning they will have some room to move with their finances, but it will be limited. jlarsons fairly evenly distributed his funds, with a little more emphasis on high school and international scouting, than on college scouting.
Round 1 Pick 5 SS Max Kelly
Kelly brings a little bit of everything to the table. His defense is good, but his range is a bit weak. He has excellent speed, and good base-running ability. He is a good hitter, especially for a shortstop, but not a great hitter. In essence, he is the solid all-around player you would expect to get at no. 5 overall. Considering he fills a major need on the Springfield, he was the right pick to make.
ML Projection: 20-25 HR/.290-.320 BA/30-40 SB
Round 1 Supp Pick 35 1B Douglas Karl
Although there may have been more talented players available at pick 35, Karl fills another pressing need for jlarsons and again, was probably the right pick to make. He is not the best defensive 1B in the world, nor does he carry the biggest stick, but he is good enough to fill both those roles, and he brings the rare element of speed to 1B.
ML Projection: 20-25 HR/.250-.270 BA/25-30 SB
Round 2 Pick 63 P Andy Meadows
not scouted enough and unsigned
Round 3 Pick 94 RP Johnny Coleman
A nice pickup at pick 94, Coleman should provide an option in long relief for jlarsons. He tends to get the ball up in the strike zone, but he has enough velocity and control to get away with it most of the time.
ML Projection: 120 IP/5-8 W/.240-.260 OAV/3.00-3.50 ERA
Round 4 Pick 126 RF Floyd Joyner
Joyner has the numbers of a standard AAA outfielder, and that is probably as far as he will go.
Round 5 Pick 158 3B Sawyer Dunston
The same as Joyner, with the same results.
Hidden Gems: RP Donatello Lampkin?, RP Felix Yosida?
Overall Grade: A
Considering the overall makeover this team needs with it's position players, jlarsons did very well in this draft targeting the right picks, especially in the first round. Landing a solid long reliever and 2 long shots in later rounds makes this a very successful draft.