Draft time: Past #6 overall picks of note:
1973 – Johnny LeMaster
1977 – Terry Kennedy
1981 – Kevin McReynolds
1985 – Barry Bonds
1986 – Gary Sheffield
1988 – Monty Fariss
1992 – Derek Jeter
1993 – Steve Soderstrom
2002 – Zack Grienke
I included Monty Fariss only because I had 692 of his 1989 Topps "1st-round pick!" cards. I included Johnny LeMaster because he was nice to me when I saw him in the Redwood City Kaiser when I was four. And I included Steve Soderstrom, Terry Kennedy, Derek Jeter, and Barry Bonds to support my prediction that the player the Giants draft will either be a complete bust, a respectable player with a long career, a star, or the greatest player in the universe.
Obviously, the suck-to-spectacular spectrum is wide open on this one. Heck, it’s an amateur baseball draft. The Giants drafted Ronnie Merrill WHEN THEY COULD HAVE HAD ALBERT PUJOLS omg. But remember, a team with Pujols isn’t drafting in a spot where Lincecum’s available, and we all know that the sacred texts, scrolls, and Bazooka Joe wrappers all point to Lincecum leading us to the Promised Land in 2012. Just forget that Pujols already took a team on his back and won a title. I’m off track now.
Notes on the draft scuttlebutt:
- It’s supposed to be a terribly weak draft on college position players, which is the type of pick that Giants fans are most likely to daydream about.
- Power high-school arms abound, which seems to fit the Giants’ modus operandi, but others pointed out that this is only John Barr’s second draft, so maybe there isn’t a whole bunch of predictive information to be found with past Giants drafts. In Barr’s bio, A.J. Burnett, Mike Mussina, Suck It Russell Martin, and Jay Payton are listed as some of his past draftees – so he likes high school pitchers, polished college pitchers, high school position players, or college position players. Got it.
- There are interesting college arms, too, like Aaron Crow, Alex White, and Tanner Scheppers. The Giants aren’t in a spot where college/high school should make a huge difference – they aren’t one quick rotation fix away from contending, so they can afford to be patient if they think the best arm that of a high-schooler.
- The Giants have been occasionally linked to Donovan Tate, which is mildly alarming. The Giants take talented, toolsy teenaged hitters and make them into productive major league hitters as often as they make them into master sommeliers. Again, though, it’s a new regime. And a whole lot of the excitement about the future has to do with teenagers Angel Villalona, Rafael Rodriguez, and Nick Noonan. It just makes me nervous to think about the tools-to-performance ratio the Giants have worked up over the past couple of decades.
Over the next week and a half, I’m planning on spotlighting a few of the players who could go at #6. So this is a preview of the draft preview to come, I guess. What would you like to see? Grainy YouTube videos? Okay, check. Links? Uninformed analysis? Check. Would y’all like to see a series of draft profiles like the one I did last year, even more on the draft, or is this the sort of thing that plays well in FanPosts and FanShots without my help?
Open draft preview preview thread.