Jun 052012
 

Grading the Texas Rangers 2012 Draft Picks—Rounds 1 5Another draft day has come and gone…and once again my phone didn’t ring. Oh well, they’re probably scared off by signability issues and that whole “can’t hit worth a shi@ label” I’ve been stuck with since high school.

As has become the norm during draft day for the Texas Rangers, they focused on athletic-types with high ceilings. Rather than replenish their deep pool of pitching prospects, the Rangers changed gears and went with an outfield-heavy contingency.
Here’s a look at the first five rounds of the 2012 Major League Draft and how the Rangers fared.

1st Round—29th overall—CF Lewis Brinson, Coral Springs HS, (FL)
Grading the Texas Rangers 2012 Draft Picks—Rounds 1 5
Baseball America ranking: 18

Height: 6’3′ Weight: 215 College Offer: Florida

• Brinson is an extremely athletic “toolsy” outfielder with a very high ceiling.
• As a centerfielder, he possesses a strong arm that could play in right field as well.
• His hit tool is viewed as “fringy” and was ranked as low as 20 by ESPN
• Projects as an elite-level defender in the outfield

COMP: Greg Golson (as a prospect not as a ML bust)

GRADE: B+ The Rangers are taking a risk here…but it’s a risk that could have a HUGE payoff.

1st RoundCompensation pick for C.J. Wilson)—39th overall—3B/P Joey Gallo, Bishop Gorman HS, (NV)
Grading the Texas Rangers 2012 Draft Picks—Rounds 1 5
Baseball America ranking: 12

Height: 6’5” Weight: 220 College Offer: LSU

• Many scouts feel that Gallo would have gone in the top 10 had he entered the draft so as a pitcher.
• Off-the-charts power, a true 80-grade…launched the 10th longest home run in the history of Petco Park last summer with a wood bat.
• Has a HUGE arm—his fastball has been clocked as high as 98 MPH. He has the potential to make it as a pitcher should his bat not play up.
• Might lack the range to stay at third base professionally; has some “miss” in his swing and is susceptible to breaking stuff.

COMP: Chris Davis, Troy Glaus

GRADE: A—Gallo is an athletic player with a monster upside; he has more power than Brinson but with a similar hit tool.

1st Round (Compensation pick for Darren Oliver)—53rd overall—RHP Collin Wiles, Blue Valley West HS, (KS)
Grading the Texas Rangers 2012 Draft Picks—Rounds 1 5
Baseball America ranking: 268

Height: 6’4” Weight: 180 College Offer: Vanderbilt

• Fastball sits in the upper-80s; occasionally hits 90 MPH.
• Wiles is a “strike thrower” with nice smooth mechanics and a good feel for a slider and changeup.
• Posted a 0.10 ERA his senior and earned “Kansas Player of the Year” honors.
• Has a projectable frame that is ripe for adding velocity as he begins to fill out.

COMP: Blake Beavan

Grade: A—Solid pick, the kind of under-the-radar pickup that Jon Daniels and his scouting department are becoming famous for.

2nd Round—83rd overall—OF, Jamie Jarmon, Indian Hill HS, (DE)
Grading the Texas Rangers 2012 Draft Picks—Rounds 1 5
Baseball America ranking: 67

Height: 6’1” Weight: 193

• Deleware Football Player of the Year.
• He’s very “fast-twitch;” his best tool might be his outstanding speed.
• Still largely unfamiliar with the intricacies of the game.
• Short, and compact swing produces pull-side pop.

COMP: Adam Jones

GRADE: A—If he lives up to his potential, he could surpass expectations and become a solid everyday outfielder.

2nd Round—93rd overall—CF, Nick Williams, Galveston Ball HS, (TX)
Grading the Texas Rangers 2012 Draft Picks—Rounds 1 5
Baseball America ranking: 100

Height: 6’3” Weight: 195

• Yet another raw and athletically gifted outfield prospect the Rangers plucked up quickly.
• Some amongst the scouting community have likened Williams to a less-refined Ken Griffey Jr.
• Pretty left-handed swing with plenty of pop. Tends to pull the ball which opens up holes in his swing.
• Has the skill-set to be a gold glover in the outfield, needs to acquire a better overall understanding of the game.
• Was clocked at 94 MPH as a pitcher.

COMP: Ken Griffey Jr. if “The Kid” hadn’t started playing baseball until high school.

GRADE: A—The Junior comp is why many hate comps. It’s pretty unfair; but then again it’s not like Junior is name-dropped in comparison. Williams is a very exciting prospect and it will awesome to see if he can fulfill the promise his athleticism seems to hint at.

3rd Round—123rd overall—C Patrick Cantwell, SUNY Stony Brook
Grading the Texas Rangers 2012 Draft Picks—Rounds 1 5
Baseball America ranking: N/A

Height: 6’1″ Weight: 205

• First Team All-American in 2011 and 2012.
• Is a “hit-first” type of backstop.
• Possesses and advanced hit tool that plays up due to the difficulty in his position.

COMP: Jesus Montero minus the pop

GRADE: B+—Every team is always looking for a quality catcher for their farm systems; Cantwell could
be a real steal this low in the draft.

4th Round—156th overall—RHP Alec Asher, Polk State College
Grading the Texas Rangers 2012 Draft Picks—Rounds 1 5
Baseball America ranking: N/A

Height: 6’4” Weight: 200

• Dominated at Polk State, posting a 1.38 ERA with 118 Ks and a 13-1 record.
• Fastball sits in the mid-90s and occasionally touches 97 MPH.

COMP: Matt West

GRADE: B+—His fastball is his only true plus-pitch

5th Round—186th overall—OF Preston Beck, UTA
Grading the Texas Rangers 2012 Draft Picks—Rounds 1 5
Height: 6’2” Weight: 190

• Beck possesses a promising hit tool with good pop and a plus arm.

COMP: David Murphy

GRADE: B—UTA has a strong history of developing solid OF prospects (Hunter Pence, etc).

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