Results tagged ‘ R.A. Dickey ’
I’m not one for putting together a mock draft, the time and effort it takes to legitmately watch video of over 100 potential first or second round picks is plain and simple a luxury I do not have. That said, however, I do follow the amateur game as closely as anyone else, but the process of knowing where and when a player fits into a particular organization is daunting enough. Combine those factors with the draft changes initiated by the new CBA and the task becomes almost life altering, albeit temporarily.
Putting the draft changes aside, this year’s event will be different than in recent years in the sense there is no consensus number one choice. Even Astros General Manager Jeff Luhnow shares that opinion, stating on Friday the team has not reached a final decision on who they will select, and likely won’t until they’re on the clock.
In looking through a mock draft database, Stanford righthander Mark Appel is the odds on favorite to go number one overall, with 39 of 55 guesses. Georgia high school outfielder Byron Buxton comes in a distant second with 14 votes.
Other consensus top five choices are LSU righthander Kevin Gausman, University of San Francisco righty Kyle Zimmer, University of Florida catcher Mike Zunino and high school shortstop Carlos Correa.
The Astros, obviously, are a team with needs across the diamond, last year’s trading of All Star Hunter Pence has left them without a marquee player and middle of the order presence. Drafting a close to ML ready pitcher like Appel, Gausman or Zimmer would give them a boost at the box office, but there wouldn’t necessarily be an immediate reflection in the standings.
One consideration for Houston in this draft which I think is being drastically underplayed is they must approach the process with the mindset this is their first major undertaking as an American League team. Going from the National League Central to the American League West is such a monumental change it’s hard to quantify in words. Personally, and this is my belief for every team, you can be somewhat competitive with a patchwork pitching rotation acquired through free agency, waivers and two or three player trades. I’m not talking Cliff Lee or CC Sabathia here, more like R.A. Dickey.
So, considering everything, if I’m the guy in charge for Houston, we’re taking Byron Buxton. I could be convinced to take Correa as well, but a potential middle of the order, Gold Glove caliber centerfielder is a safer bet than a top of the order, Gold Glove caliber shortstop with question marks on his bat. Don’t get me wrong, there’s question marks with Buxton’s offense too, but if Correa has to move off short at some point, his hit tool becomes more of an issue, and with sticking to a budget more of a concern nowadays, it’s not a risk worth taking.
For me, anyway.