Table of Contents

Friday, June 08, 2007

First Day Draft Recap

Overall breakdown of day 1 picks:

College Hitters: 3
College Pitchers: 2
High School Hitters: 2
High School Pitchers: 1

Overall, a fairly balanced first day, though it was split 5:3 in favor of hitters. The Reds probably do have more organizational depth among pitchers than hitters right now, however, so that isn't necessarily a bad thing.

After reviewing the information I could find on these guys, here are my very brief summaries of the scoop for each pick:
  • 1st round:
    • RHB C Devin Mesoraco - High School - Sounds like everything you'd hope for in a mid-1st round pick of a high school player. Great athlete, good polish for his age, excellent skills on offense and defense, and no significant problems in his game.
  • Supplemental Round:
    • RHB SS Todd Frazier - College - The Big East player of the year and first-team All American is likely to move to 3B/OF, but he's a big, athletic kid with good power and speed. Reports are that he has an unorthodox swing (I think I see the "hitch" mlb's scouting report mentions when I watch his video, particularly during BP), but he put up spectacular numbers at Rutgers (0.377/0.502/0.757, 1:1 k:bb ratio). Not particularly good range (especially not at SS), but a good arm. He could have gone at the end of the first round proper, so the Reds did well to get him here. I like him.
    • RHP Kyle Lotzkar - High School - Hits 94 mph in high school, so he may yet gain mph as his career progresses. Also has a very nice "slurve." At 6'3" 185 lbs, he's fairly tall and with some muscle, which is desirable. Control is an issue, but he has time on his side. Plus, he's Canadian, so he might be expected to be behind in his development, eh?
      • scouting report
      • I'm no scout, but the initial foward arm movement of his delivery seems a bit jerky to me...? If anyone out there knows anything about pitching mechanics, I'd love to hear from you.
  • 2nd Round:
    • RHB SS Zack Cozart - College - Slap hitter with little power (0.304/0.382/0.428 at U Miss) and little speed. says he has below-average range, but good hands and arm. Doesn't seem like a particularly good athlete. I guess I tend to be more partial to guys who get to the ball but boot it as opposed to guys that will catch anything, but only if it's hit right at them. So assuming MLB's report is accurate, this to me isn't looking like a very good pick, even as a defense-first middle infielder. This is the one pick that I think is something of a waste.
  • 3rd Round:
    • RHP Scott Carroll - College - Not much written about him yet. He had a 2.93 ERA in 89 IP this season for Missouri State U, along with a 81/25 k/bb and 4 hr allowed. Nice season, though not as dominant as you'll sometimes see. Doug Gray found scouting info indicating that he can hit 94-95 on a good day, and has some variations on the split finger to go with his fastball. He's also a very good-sized kid at 6'5", 220lbs, which hopefully means he'll be durable.
      • Again, I'm clueless as a scout, but my impressions of his video are that he's got a fairly smooth delivery (compared to Lotzkar, for example), and a relatively low arm angle (certainly not a side-armer though). He routinely was hitting 91 with movement, and he threw a few breaking pitches that I'm guessing are his splitters.
    • RHB Neftali Soto - Puerto Rico Academy (high school) - Tall infielder (6'3" 180 lbs) with power and some speed. An average arm and poor range sound like they'll push him to the right side of the infield or the outfield. Has good potential as an offensive player, so this seems like an ok pick to me. He might pan out great, or turn into nothing. Given that the Reds already had several picks to this point, a high risk/high reward kind of player seems appropriate...though I'd feel better about it if the 2nd-round pick didn't seem like such a waste.
  • 4th Round
    • SHB 1B Blake Stouffer - College - Put up an excellent hitting line at Texas A&M this season, hitting 0.402/0.490/0.663. Doesn't seem to have Frazier's power, and I'm guessing that Texas is a better hitting environment than New Jersey. But still, he was easily A&M's best hitter last season, and college first basemen are generally very reliable performers. Not particularly big at 6'0" 190 lbs, but he is a switch hitter.
      • I need to stop doing this (I'm completely unqualified to scout players like this...but I don't have any other information on him), but looking at his video, he seems to have a smooth if fairly long swing. Will he hit better pitching?
  • 5th Round
    • LHP Andrew Bowman - College - The former Sun Devil and now-Nebraska Husker pitcher had a somewhat tough season, posting a 4.31 ERA in 39.7 IP, splitting time between the rotation and the bullpen, along with a solid 30/11 k/bb ratio. But at 6'4" and 190 lbs, he's a big kid and left-handed, which is a good way to get a shot at pro ball.
      • His video shows that he has a pretty smooth delivery, and consistently hits 90-91 on his fastball, sometimes with movement tailing away from a right-handed hitter. He also seems to have a decent breaking ball that comes in 10 mph slower.
      • Here's a small background article from Nebraska's school paper.
We'll see what tomorrow brings. I'm probably not going to cover the remaining picks in this sort of detail, but if something interesting comes up, I'll post about it. At first impressions, this looks like a nice draft--time to sign these guys and get them playing ball! :)


  1. I don't understand Cozart at 79. Other than having good hands, his scouting report is terrible - no power, below average speed and range, profiled as a 9-hole hitter. He looks like minor league roster filler, for which I wouldn't think you'd waste a second round pick.

  2. We can just hope that the Reds know something about him that we don't. Maybe they can make him into something.

    I've heard him compared to Paul Janish. The problem with that comparison is that Janish actually outhit Cozart in his last year of college, batting 0.345/0.428/0.545 for Rice in 2004. Don't know whether there are some mitigating park factors and such we should consider (I'm sure Mississippi is rather humid, for example), but on the surface, Janish looks like a much better hitter. And yet the question about Janish is whether he'll ever hit enough to be a useful super-utility guy. So does Cozart have any hope? We'll see, I guess. -j

  3. BP's Bryan Smith on the Reds' draft, which he rated as the second-best use of multiple picks:

    "Chris Buckley finally took a prep player in the first round when he picked Devin Mesoraco, and did so again twice more in the first five rounds. However, I think the combination of Todd Frazier and Zach Cozart is a really good mix, probably because if you combined the two players, they would make one hell of a prospect."

    I think he's higher on Cozart's defense than I am, but again, I like range and athleticism in my middle infielders...

  4. Justin,

    I saw Bryan's summary. Of course, you can't combine the two players.

    And I've seen the Janish comps. Thing is, we have a Paul Janish already on the 25-man. His name is Juan Castro. And we could have him for two more years, lucky us.

  5. Phil,
    Janish is a better hitter than Castro is and its probably not close. He is also a much better fielder at this point in his career than Castro, who frankly isnt very good anymore.

  6. Janish is a better hitter than Castro is and its probably not close. He is also a much better fielder at this point in his career than Castro, who frankly isnt very good anymore.


    Yes, I know that. But being better than Castro is damning with faint praise.

    My point is that Krivsky elected, even though he had Castro under contract for 2007 (his age 35 season), to extend his contract to guarantee his age 36 season with a club option on his age 37 season - all while he had cheaper, younger and better options in his minor league system. (Castro is a particular ax of mine I like to grind.)

    The secondary point is that Cozart seems redundant if we have Janish in the system, unless Cozart is intended to be minor league roster filler (or there's something beyond the scouting report, like an affinity for scrappy good field, no hit guys). And if he is intended as filler, a second round pick seems to be buying high.