FanPost

2012 MLB Draft Snapshot – College Outfielders


In the 4 years of John Barr running the draft, the Giants have used 3 high picks on College Outfielders. The 2010 draft included 1st round pick Gary Brown (24th overall) and 2nd round pick Jarrett Parker (74th overall), the 2008 draft included 3rd round pick Roger Kieschnick (82nd overall). The college OF class for 2012 will be overshadowed by a pretty deep class of high school players. There are 3 standouts at the start of the season, and there are some solid players who might make noise and rise up draftboards or stay put and provide some solid value.

Interesting article on the profile of a RH corner outfielder profile and how they might be a vanishing breed by John Manuel here: http://www.baseballamerica.com/today/college/column/2012/2612970.html

Hat tip Roger.

The CBA rears its ugly head and bites the Giants pretty good. Here is a breakdown:

http://www.baseballamerica.com/blog/draft/2012/02/2012-aggregate-bonus-pools/

Hat tip Fla-Giant.

Current Giants Depth at OF:

Big Giants OF at the moment comprises Melky Cabrera in LF, Angel Pagan in CF and Nate Schierholtz in RF. Brandon Belt can play a serviceable corner OF. Aubrey Huff might be able to make pretend in LF, but Giants fans would rather he not.

There are some speed guys who might challenge for the 4th OF spot. First up is Gregor Blanco, a light hitting journeyman who tore up the VWL and whose main skill is the ability to draw a walk. As the Giants don’t have a true leadoff man, he’ll get a long look and definitely be one of the first calls when an injury happens. On the 40-man is OSU alum speedster Tyler Graham. Recently waived and re-signed Jason Christian is now off of the 40-man, but has an invite to spring training.

Joining the speedsters at spring training are the AA/40 man guys Roger Kieschnick and Francisco Peguero. Kieschnick is getting long in the tooth but has some power potential which is rare in our system, Frankie Pegs refuses to walk and gets the OBP brigade up in arms. They will most likely begin the year in Fresno.

Gary Brown goes to Richmond, and we’ll see what’s what. Recent fanpost discussion on a fangraphs chat highlighted some good issues about Brown. As our top prospect a lot of attention and hope is being directed his way. College hitters usually do tear up the Cal League, but he did a particularly nice job of tearing it up, being named Rookie of the Year and adjusting well after some June Swoon.

The Giants also have some very interesting CF speedsters including Jesus Galindo, Shawn Payne and Kentrell Hill. The Legend of Chuckie Jones and Rafael Rodriguez are raw talents, and very young still. So there is some talent on the farm, it seems to be concentrated in CF with emphasis on speed and defense and questionmarks about hitting and power. With a future plan of Brown in Center and a fast tweener such as Frankie Pegs in RF, its easy to dream of Victor Roache rolling into LF in a couple of years and anchoring the lineup with some real power. Not likely to happen though.

Top 3 College OF Prospects: Victor Roache, Tyler Naquin, Travis Jankowski

10 More: Jeremy Baltz, James Ramsey, Barrett Barnes, Jacob Stewart, Brandon Thomas, Taylor Dugas, Preston Tucker. Mike Yastrzemski, Robert Refsnyder, Dan Gulbransen

1. Victor Roache, Junior from Georgia Southern

6’1 225 R/R 9/17/1991

The Goods: Led the nation with 30 HRs even with these new NCAA bats. Looks athletic enough to stick in the outfield instead of moving to 1B. Punishes the baseball with very good bat speed. Fast for a football player sized guy. Has worked on his plate discipline.

The Bad: Contact issues. Struck out 42 times each year. 151 ABs in 2010, 230 ABs in 2011. Raw from picking up baseball late and cold weather guy from MI, but has taken a nice step forward last year.

The Stats: 326/438/1216 last year at Georgia Southern.
The Ranks: BA#9, Mayo #10

The Giants: The only chance of him falling is if teams get scared off by his struggles with breaking balls or he has a terrible year. He started with 2 HRs on the 2012 season.

2. Tyler Naquin, Junior from Texas A&M

6’3 190 L/L 4/24/1991

The Goods: Plays RF, has the best arm in the entire OF draft class. Hustles, plays the game the right way, good speed to take extra bases and steal a few as well. He was the Big 12 Player of the Year, and played well for Team USA.

The Bad: The power hasn’t matched up with his frame yet. He has the dreaded tweener label already, arm for RF, maybe not enough speed to stick in CF and not enough pop.

The Stats: 2011 NCAA: 389/458/1003 with 2 HRs. Team USA: 321/373/920 with 2 HRs. 6 SBs with 6 CS’s for Texas A&M, 7 triples.

The Ranking: BA# 30, Mayo #35

The Giants: Don’t we have Nate Schierholtz already? This guy can hit, with a smooth line drive swing. Definitely worth keeping an eye on this year. He might be a redundancy for the Giants but he represents a safe bat, one of several in the college OF ranks. If he busts out with power, that could change things.

3. Travis Jankowski, Junior from Stony Brook

6’3 190 L/R 9/13/1991

The Goods: True CF, had a huge Cape, winning the Cape MVP after leading in many hitting categories. He is a plus fielder, with excellent speed and a good to average arm. He doesn’t project to hit with power, but he demonstrated great bat control. With his speed, he could be a pretty good weapon.

The Bad: Not much power projected, average arm, the last big name from Stony Brook was Joe Nathan.

The Stats: 2011 NCAA: 355/419/876 with 30 SBs/4CS. 20BBs/22Ks. 2011 Cape: 319/410/855 with 15 SBs/5CS 18BBs/34 Ks.

The Ranking: BA #24, Mayo #34

The Giants: Like college bats that excel in the Cape. The obvious comparison for Jankowski is Gary Brown, except he bats from the left side. This would be a pick for building depth in the system, not necessarily filling needs. Sabean does have a pattern of following a success with repetition.

4. Jeremy Baltz, Junior from St. Johns

6’3 205 R/R

The Goods: Solid hitter who lit up the joint his freshman year with 24 HRs and a 396 BA, took a step back with the new NCAA bats. Team that gets him is getting a very good hitter and not a lot else, but it’s a good bat.

The Bad: Slow, profiles in LF, not a strong arm, big guy who doesn’t really stand out anywhere in particular.

The Stats: 2011 NCAA: 313/444/927 with 6 HRs, 7 SBs 42BBs/47Ks

The Ranking: BA #74, Mayo N/R

The Giants: Have got a very good look at Baltz with their Joe Panik adventures last year. He has Pat the Bat comps, three true outcome with some defensive question marks. What is there to like? He seems like one of those New York guys who just makes it work, like Mark Jackson in hoops. Some team is going to get a bargain on him as he’ll drop into the late supplemental or even the 2-4. Might just be the Giants if it gets down far enough.

5. James Ramsey, Senior from Florida State

6’0 190 L/R 12/19/1989

The Goods: Drafted by the Twins in the 22nd round last year, he decided to fall back on his Pops legacy instead despite a good offer and long negotiations. Ramsey is the Captain of the FSU team this year like his Dad, and he’s chasing that CWS dream. This guy plays with very high energy and is a natural leader. He swings hard, has some pop and is a good hitter.

The Bad: The dreaded tweener label. He may not be fast enough for Center, the bat may not play in the corners. Average arm, he does have some pop though.

The Stats: 2011 NCAA: 364/442/1022 10 HRs, 11 SBs. Cape 2011: 313/448/1019 6 HRs, 7 Sbs 28 BBs/25Ks

The Ranking: BA #69, Mayo N/R

The Giants: Is this guy a usable 4th OF or does he have intangibles to break on through? These are the guys I love to root for, even if it’s a pretty big longshot. LH hitters in our park are at a natural disadvantage. He impressed in the Cape.

6. Barrett Barnes, Junior from Texas Tech

6’1 210 R/R 7/29/1991

The Goods: Played CF every game for TT, even though he might profile better in a corner. Has good athleticism and quick hands with some pop. Patient hitter who can draw walks, 41 in 2011.

The Bad: Stunk up the cape pretty good, 221/308/635. 2 HRs and 5 SBs. High strikeout rate to go with the walks.

The Stats: 2011 NCAA: 290/414/923 with 10 HRs and 19/21 SBs

The Ranking: BA #97, Mayo N/R

The Giants: Reading his bio on the TT website he is drawing a lot of comparables with our own Roger K. First freshman since Roger K to have 6 RBI, opening day. First 2 HR day since, you guessed it. He might be a very similar player. Athletic with enough power to tantalize a bit.

7. Jake Stewart, Junior from Stanford

6’2 205 R/R

The Goods: Stanford has a hugely hyped squad, and this guy is going to slip through the cracks a little. He is a very fast true CF with excellent defense. He started in 2010 with Piscotty (moved to 3B for the moment) and Tyler Gaffney, the 2 sport RB who has some serious attitude. He was drafted in the 14th round by the Phillies out of high school. The bat hasn’t come round yet, but is definitely worth watching this year.

The Bad: Had a bad Cape, hitting 210 in 26 games while playing good defense, got rated the 29th best prospect there by PG.

The Stats: 2011 NCAA: 287 BA with 32 runs, 8/10 SBs

The Ranking: Unranked

The Giants: Are going to be at Stanford, might as well check out the CF to see what’s what. He won’t be a headline player, but might put together a solid year and rise fast. Very good sleeper, and had great numbers out of HS (511 BA/1011SLG) His pops played ball at Virginia Tech and the Twins minor leagues.

8. Brandon Thomas, Junior from Georgia Tech

6’3 205 S/R 2/07/1991

The Goods: Switch Hitter! Haven’t come across many yet. Learned to switch hit late, at age 16. Obviously a very hard worker. Has a very strong arm, with plus speed. Has a good chance to stick in CF. Made noise in the Florida Collegiate Summer League under Davey Johnson. Has a good feel for the game, especially baserunning and fielding.

The Bad: Along with hard-working he also has the emotional label. That can be a double edged sword. Held his own at the cape but didn’t excel. Seems like a student of the game, making the best of his talents, also a double edged sword. Might have contact issues.

The Stats: Hit 307 in 2011 NCAA with 19 SBs and 6 HRs. Hit 273 in the Cape, with 10 BBs/33 Ks.

The Ranking: BA #77, Mayo N/R

The Giants: 6’3 and fast? Switch hitter? Worth a long look. Seems like a guy with intangibles, especially leadership. Big warning though: he plays the guitar. Nothing good comes of baseball players who fancy themselves guitar afficianados.

9. Taylor Dugas, Senior from Alabama

5’7 175 L/L

The Goods: The Cubs drafted Dugas in the 8th round last year. Grinder with an advanced sense of the strike zone. He has an advanced hit tool and above average speed. He is small and he is Cajun. Proud son of Lafayette LA. Can’t help it, I love the Cajuns.

The Bad: He’s small. Got cut from the Team USA trials. Had a bad 2010 Cape. Judging from the SBs #s he might not use his speed on the basepaths.

The Stats: 2011 NCAA: 349/455/1011 with 8 HRs, 8SBs and 41 walks

The Ranking: Unranked

The Giants: The guy got on base almost half the time last year. The Cubs weren’t scared off by the bad Cape. He looks like a scrappy gamer type.

10. Preston Tucker, Senior from Florida

6’0 220 L/L

The Goods: Passed up good money from the Rockies in the 16th round of last years draft. Will likely become the all time leader in RBIs for the Gators in the first couple weeks of the year, and wants to knock the Gamecocks off their perch for the national title, badly. He is a Golden Spikes watch list nominee who has solid contact skills and is a patient hitter with power. He added 30 pounds of muscle. Hard worker who has been underestimated due to body type.

The Bad: Moved off of 1B, would profile there or LF due to below average speed and arm. Had a poor showing on the cape.

The Stats: Batted 308 with 74 RBI, 28 BBs and 23 2Bs. The SEC websites love to give copious single game heroic descriptions of rival grudge matches but can’t be bothered to provide a simple triple slash line.

The Ranking: BA #95, Mayo N/R

The Giants: Depends on what he does this year. Might not be the most athletic guy, but has worked hard and dedicated himself at Florida. He has been picked apart by scouts already, maybe the Giants see something that he does well.

11. Mike Yastrzemski, Junior from Vanderbilt

5’11 185 L/L 8/23/90

The Goods: Lets get sentimental. Carl Yastrzemski has tutored his grandson on the art of hitting, particularly since his son and Michael's father, Mike Yastrzemski, died at age 44 in 2004 from a heart attack after hip surgery. If that doesn’t make you tear up, I can’t help you dear cynic. Mike Yaz has done nothing special yet, and playing in the shadow of a legend is a very difficult thing to do. He has put up ordinary stats, and shown a dedication to the game. The Yaz of legend famously had many doubters.

The Bad: The stats are pretty ordinary. He seems like a good fielder with a good arm who hasn’t taken anything to the next level.

The Stats: 2011 NCAA: 296/422/800 with 3 HRs, 43Ks/43BBs, 23/26 SBs

The Ranking: Unranked

The Giants: Would drafting him cause a riot in Boston? Just someone to keep an eye on.

12. Robert Refsnyder, Junior from Arizona

6’0 200 R/R 3/26/1991

The Goods: Under the radar player who finished third in the Pac-10 last year in slugging percentage (498). Played well in the Cape, hitting 315 with 12 RBI. If he can fill in the power, he could really break out.

The Bad: OK but not great plate discipline. Had a drop off in BA from his freshman year. He’s from Laguna Hills.

The Stats: 2011 NCAA: 320/371/869 with 6 HRs, 9/11 SBs, 16 BBs/31Ks in 241 ABs

The Ranking: Unranked

The Giants: Should hopefully know the Pac10 upside down and inside out. It is their backyard. Arizona isn’t a top squad, but this guy looks interesting. Looks to be at least partly of Korean descent.

13. Dan Gulbransen, Junior from Jacksonville

5’11 200 L/L 1/5/1991

The Goods: Sleeper time. The running mate for Adam Brett Walker, Gulbransen is also from Wisconsin and somehow ended up in sunny Florida as well. The J-Ville coach must talk a mean game. He is fast, athletic and has good instincts. Hit 303 with 21 BBs/17Ks, 7 SBs and 1 HR in the Cape for Hyannis. Put up very nice numbers his sophomore year. Has a short compact swing, gap power, contact hitter who doesn’t K much.

The Bad: His arm is rated average, if he can’t stick in CF he would be a tweener, and the competition he and Walker face may be an issue.

The Stats: 2011 NCAA: 370/491/1037 with 50 walks, high in the conference.

The Ranking: Unranked

The Giants: Walker will get a lot of hype for the HR potential, but Gulbransen might end up the better prospect. This guy is a workout fiend, strongest guy on the team. He’s made some highlight catches you can find on youtube. He is a legit pure hitter with gap power, and a very hard worker. He is getting a lot of press, hard to call him a sleeper at this point, but I’d love for the Giants to take a look at him.

Conclusion:

The Giants most likely have bigger fish to fry than look at the College OFs in the first round. However, with the budget limitations and the fact there are so many seniors who went back to school, there could be some bargains in the later rounds. There are far too many OFs to profile, I hit the likely suspects and then pulled a few of the seniors I found interesting. How they play this season will determine draft value.

Comment Starters:

How confident are folks about Gary Brown? He is mentioned in the same breath as Mike Trout at times, and yet sometimes also gets 4th OF labeled.

Should the Giants be building more OF depth? Where does it cut off into a waste of resources?

Are either Naquin or Jankowski good “safety picks”? Any chance of them falling into our laps with the 2nd round pick?

Is the strategy of a tweener in RF a good one due to the crazy OF at PacBell?

Nate Schierholtz has 1100 MLB ABs. Is he who he is now?

Reggie Sanders in 2002 put up 250/324/779 with 23 HRs/85RBIs. Remember that?

Why is RF such a wasteland historically?

Been discussed in the Power Hitter profile already some, how much attention should teams pay to athleticism as a primary factor in drafting? Are big guys automatically labeled stiff?

This FanPost is reader-generated, and it does not necessarily reflect the views of McCovey Chronicles. If the author uses filler to achieve the minimum word requirement, a moderator may edit the FanPost for his or her own amusement.

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