Tuesday night began the three-day long party known as the baseball first year player draft (or the Rule 4 draft to those in the know).
While I'm sure Erik and others will be around to provide some analysis sooner or later, we thought we'd take a trip around the baseball world and see what others had to say about their team's early returns.
We've tried to reach far and wide for links (we even left SB Nation for some of them), but we know we didn't capture them all. Feel free to add your own link to any quality draft analysis in the comments and we'll collate them for you.
To get everyone started, here are a few general reactions. Team specific recaps start after the jump. And don't forget to vote in our poll at the end.
BaseballAmerica.com: Blog: Baseball America Draft Blog
The Draft Blog is a source of frequent updates about the draft and the top prospects eligible for the draft.
BaseballAmerica.com: Draft: First Day Impressions
It's too early to grade the baseball draft, as none of these players has even signed a contract, not to mention played a pro game. Most baseball drafts require at least three years to really read, if not five years when high school players are factored in. But that doesn't mean we can't have some instant analysis. We're breaking this down into teams and players that can be considered winners after Tuesday's first day of the 2009 draft, and those that will have to win us over.
Baseball Prospectus | Future Shock: First-Round Recap
Kevin Goldstein Says: "Congrats Nats fan, you just got a potential franchise-changing talent. Now the REAL fun begins with the negotiation. I really should start a pool on bonus and total package. I'm guessing $8-9 million dollar bonus and total package around $25 million"
Chat: MLB Insider Keith Law -SportsNation - ESPN
Keith Law chats about the draft.
- Draft Day Discussion - Minor League Ball
- More Draft Discussion - Minor League Ball
- More Draft Thread - Minor League Ball
Draft Discussion Thread Day Two - Minor League Ball
John Sickels discusses the draft with his readers.
Diamondbacks Draft Day 2009 - AZ Snakepit
"I have to think this is kind of a dream scenario for Arizona -- two players they really wanted, at least one of whom looked like he'd go ahead of them in Borchering. I know some teams were looking at moving Pollock to second, like Jason said, and the Cardinals worked him out at shortstop. If he can convert to the infield, he's a top-ten talent." -- Keith Law
Wednesday Rockpile: Rockies Win Sixth Straight, Draft Day Aftermath - Purple Row
The big news for the Rockies yesterday was their stunning pick of Tyler Matzek, a LHP from Capistrano Valley (Ca.) High School. Matzek wants "precedent-setting money" and has committed to Oregon, so it will hardly be an easy sign for the Rockies. The fact that the front office had the...er, gumption to make the pick of a high-upside, expensive high school arm is really the big news here. Get him signed, O'Dowd!
- Dodgers Draft - Day One Recap - True Blue LA
Getting to know top Dodger draftee Aaron Miller | Dodger Thoughts | Los Angeles Times
I liked him coming out of high school: very athletic and projectable with the arm. The problem was, he wanted to go to Baylor because he liked to hit (a conflict discussed in this Waco Tribune-Herald story by Brice Cherry). So basically, after he got to college, he didn't really focus on pitching.
- Draft Day: Padres select Donovan Tate - Gaslamp Ball
Scout.com: Padres Draft Blog: Day One/Two
The main point of contention is his bat. Scouts rave about his bat speed but acknowledge that he needs better pitch selection. He has raw power that should develop in time, especially as his ability to narrow his strike zone develops.
Donavan Tate " Another Padres Blog
If you like comparisons, some guys that make sense to me are Chris Young (Arizona version), Mike Cameron, and maybe a Cameron Maybin. Certainly, he’s a potential high-impact player. Of course, with that comes a pretty decent risk, a decent chance that he’ll flop or won’t live up to expectations.
The San Francisco Giants' Draft: Day One Review - McCovey Chronicles
There are scenarios in which a cheaper Wheeler might have been preferable to a full-priced Matzek: "Gee, we think Matzek is a great prospect, but Wheeler is almost as good, and if the difference is $2M, we can use that money to buy out a college commitment later in the draft. Wheeler + another prospect is a much better deal than just Matzek." Good. "Dang, Matzek is clearly a better prospect, but we need that money for Juan Uribe’s extension. Uh, I guess we’ll take this Wheeler guy." Bad. "Matzek’s good, but we liked Wheeler’s delivery/follow through/ fastball/whatever a lot better, so he was higher on our draft board." Perfectly acceptable.
Cubs Draft Three on the First Day | Bleacher Nation | Chicago Cubs News, Rumors, and Commentary
The Cubs’ system could use more left-handed bats, and more outfielders, and I generally prefer using higher picks on college players, so in those regards, I like this pick. However, I don’t know that I’m crazy about "athleticism" being the dominant trait for which the Cubs are looking in this draft. Athletes are great, but this isn’t football.
Cubs Draft - First 30 Rounds | Chicago Cubs Blog — Mouthpiece Sports
The Cubs had the 31st pick, and no supplemental picks, so it was a thin draft. The later rounds Wednesday, and even the last twenty, could be important. Or void of any usable talent. Let’s take a look at what was a fairly "old" batch of players, not a lot of prep and JuCo players.
- 2009 Cubs Draft Ticker Tracker - Day One | The Cub Reporter (TCR) | A Chicago Cubs Blog
- 2009 Cubs Draft Tracker Ticker - Day 2 | The Cub Reporter (TCR) | A Chicago Cubs Blog
Basement Dwellers: It's Mike Leake!
As a recent grad of Arizona State (for grad school), I'm delighted with the Reds' first round selection of Mike Leake (pronounced "leak," I think) as the Reds' first overall selection in the 2009 draft.
Cincinnati Reds Draft (Day 1) Recap | redsminorleagues.com
Overall I think that I really like what the Reds have done so far. Leake came in ranked #7 on my overall draft board and while my #3 guy was sitting there, I don’t mind passing over him. Adding perhaps the best athlete in the draft is never a problem for me even if he is raw and is not taken in the first round. We also have two live arms who may need a little time (Boxberger and Joseph) but have plenty of good going for them.
2009 Cincinnati Reds Draft Day 2 Recap | redsminorleagues.com
The Reds took a few guys who fell down the draft boards that will require over slot money to sign. Deven Marrero, Stephen Perez and Tucker Barnhart lead that group. If the Reds could get two of those guys signed, it would really boost the rating of this draft for them.
Houston Astros select High School SS Jiovanni Mier with First Round Pick - The Crawfish Boxes
We thought he was the best baseball player in this Draft, scouting director Bobby Heck said.
Houston Astros Draft Selections, Rounds 4-30 - The Crawfish Boxes
In total through 31 picks made, the Astros have selected: 1 Catcher, 3 First Basemen, 1 Second Baseman, 3 Third Basemen, 4 Shortstops, 6 Outfielders, and 13 Pitchers
Draft Thread: First Day Recap/Second Day Discussion - Brew Crew Ball
A lot of exaggerations and rumors can get spread this time of year—and we weren’t present at the workout—we’ve been told that during his workout in Anaheim, Walla was thrown 60 balls during a BP session and put 38 of them in the seats for home runs. His coach said that at a workout for some scouts this spring, they wanted to see him take 25 swings with a metal bat and then 25 with wood. He hit 18 home runs with the metal, switched to wood and hit 18 more over the fence. Instant fan-favorite, am I right?
Day 1 Draft Review - We've heard this song before
After last year's draft, several people wrote that it was a refreshing change to be able to recap the Pirates' draft by writing things like, "Signability issues" instead of "reach" or "overdraft" again and again. And they were right, it was a big departure from how things were done in the past and it brought a much-needed infusion of talent into the Pirates' system. That being said, guess which words I'd use to describe three of the four Pirate picks on Day 1 of the 2009 draft?
Player Development and the 2009 Draft | Future Redbirds
"I feel like this was the year we could take some younger kids and some higher risks," Luhnow said. "And let our system and our own people do what they do best — which is to take raw material that has a really high upside and turn it into a finished product."
Drafting a Masterpiece - Viva El Birdos
I do, however, have quite a bit to say about the draft, and what the direction the Cardinals took may mean in the long run.
Braves select Vanderbuilt left-handed pitcher Mike Minor with their first pick - Talking Chop
I give this pick a grade of B+. That's kind of how you could describe Minor. He's polished, but not flashy.
Braves select Princeton right-handed pitcher David Hale with their second pick - Talking Chop
I guess the trend so far this year is that the Braves are picking polished college pitchers from elite private universities. When was the last time the Braves selected two college pitchers with their top two picks?
Recapping the Braves 2009 Draft: Day 2, Part 1 - Talking Chop
There are definitely some trends here, as there usually are in Braves drafts. The team is doign a good job of picking up some middle infield talent, and they are of course picking tons of pitchers. Many of the guys they've picked are surprises to have gone this early and are were unranked guys on the Baseball America lists (which is what I used to glean the rankings listed in the descriptions below). Another interesting trend you will notice is the amount of college players as opposed to the lack of high school prospects. This is a departure from some other drafts that were rich in high school talent.
Recapping the Braves 2009 Draft: Day 2, Part 2 - Talking Chop
This next group of draftees (16-30) will include a lot of summer follows. These are guys who are participating in the various prep summer leagues. They will be allowed to pitch in these leagues, and then evaluated before the Braves decide whether or not to sign them. Only about half of these players, at most, will likely be signed.
Florida Marlins selection: Chad James in the 1st round - FishStripes
If you read the other articles about James they will say how he has a great change up but, his curve ball could use some work, most of this was reported by BA on draft day and I think they got a little confused. James has a good curve ball but the change needs some work. But really all of that doesn't matter, the organization will soon learn everything there is to know about his pitches.
With The 72nd Pick, The Mets Select Steven Matz, LHP - Amazin' Avenue
The Mets used their second round pick (their first) to pick a left-handed high school pitcher from Ward Melville on Long Island. He was a bit of a signability guy, so it's good to see the Mets using their money aggressively, especially to get the local kid.
Some quick day one thoughts " Phuture Phillies
Not having a first round pick, and more specifically, not having a boatload of picks in the first 3 rounds like last year, I wasn’t expecting a bonanza with this draft. My hope was that we’d look to add guys with qualities that our system doesn’t currently possess. Those are, in my opinion; guys with plus raw power, middle infield prospects, and corner infield prospects. I was also interested in prep lefties, since we’re seemingly stacked with interesting RHP prospects.
Federal Baseball Talks Stephen Strasburg With Sports Illustrated Writer Lee Jenkins. - Federal Baseball
If you're like me, you spent the days leading up to last night's MLB Draft reading article after article about all the top pitching prospects who never lived up to their potential, and how the Nationals' No. 1 pick Stephen Strasburg was going to have overcome tremendous odds to live up the hype that preceded his selection by the Washington Nationals last night.
FJB: Strasburg, then Signability
On the first day of the draft, the Nationals made the choice that everyone knew they'd make with the top pick, and then appear to have gone right for signability picks down the line.
Angels Take Randal Grichuk As Their #1 Pick, 24th Overall - Halos Heaven
Grichuk put himself on the map as a little leaguer, hitting four home runs in the junior-junior circuit's world series. He also projects to hit for average from the right side, despite some pull tendencies, so his game's not just about going deep. Defense has not been his strong point, so he'll likely be limited to left field. The front office has clearly listened to fans' demands for more power.
Angels make some gambles on day two of the draft - Halos Heaven
On day one, commentators speculated that the Halos might not be committing the type of financial resources necessary to fully exploit their advantageous draft position. I was among said detractors. I take it all back now, because it's becoming clear that the Angels have not yet finished sniffing around for top shelf talent, and appear able and willing to pay for it.
Keith Law Gives Quick Thoughts on A's Draft - Athletics Nation
If (Grant) Green stays at short, they did very, very well; his bat absolutely plays there, and he does have the athleticism for it. I just think he needs a lot of work there and could end up in center. (Justin) Marks threw well down the stretch but I think every fifth day he'll probably have a fringe-average fastball and no plus pitch. He did really perform this year, though.
Welcome To Seattle, Dustin | U.S.S. Mariner
The M’s needed a guy like this, and while he’s not as sexy as Strasburg, we should be thrilled that the team had the opportunity to add Dustin Ackley to the organization. He’s probably going to be a USSM favorite for a long time.
Baseball Time in Arlington: A Texas Rangers Blog - Home - Texas Rangers Day One MLB Draft Recap: The Purke Supremacy
"Overall, Purke's mechanics could be a lot worse. That said, I'm not a fan of his arm action at all. The slinging action reported by Baseball America is clearly present, and he puts a lot of torque on his elbow. Long term, he has almost no chance to stay healthy with these mechanics."
- More on Purke - Lone Star Ball
The White Sox draft a football player. They're due, right? (Tremendous Upside Potential)
A former football player with serious holes in his swing? Hello, Jerry Owens!
Jared Mitchell Drafted by White Sox in 1st Round, #23 | Mitchell Scouting Report
As the current White Sox continue to muddle through a disappointing June homestand that was supposed to put us on a path back toward the top of the AL Central, not the bottom, I will just say this: Jared Mitchell may never get past AA, but the thought of his potential — and the daydream of a real center fielder roaming the outfield grass on the South Side once again — has me smiling.
The Tribe Daily - A Daily Assault on One's Lifespan.
White is a Scott Boras client, or at least will be. That's kind of scary to me considering he's a Junior. A lot of people are saying though that this was tremendous value for where they got him however. Not a surprise he fell if that's the case, with being a Boras client and all that.
Cleveland Indians Select Pitcher Alex White in First Round | Bleacher Report
It seems like a good pick, but remember this: The Indians have not selected an All-Star in the draft since 1999 (CC Sabathia), so I guess they are due.
Detroit Tigers: Draft Day Analysis - Bless You Boys
I don't like this pick as much as I want to. Turner is a good player- heck of a fastball and very projectable. He's a Chadd guy all right. What I don't like is that his breaking pitches lag behind his fastball, and he's got command issues and delivery flaws. It's really hard to fix delivery problems (see Dontrelle Willis), and any player that keeps fastballs up in the zone is going to be punished eventually.
Royals Draft-Day 1 Recap - Royals Review
Royals Review looks at the Royals first day draft picks, Aaron Crow and Will Myers.
Rany on the Royals
As those of you who follow me on Twitter (@jazayerli) know, my initial reaction to the Aaron Crow was, shall we say, less than enthusiastic. This wasn’t a reflection on Crow so much as it was a reflection on Grant Green, who thanks to the Pirates’ late decision to go cheap yet again and select Boston College catcher Tony Sanchez – probably the 20th-best player in the draft – at #4, the tumblers fell into place for Green to be available at #12.
Twins Select Four College Pitchers On Day One - Twinkie Town
It would have been hard to pick a better pitcher at this point in the draft. There may have been lower-risk ones on the board, but none with the potential ceiling. I'm more than pleased with the selection of Gibson.
Orioles First Round Draft Pick: Matt Hobgood | Birds Watcher | A Baltimore Orioles Blog
Overall, Hobgood probably has the biggest upside in the draft. He already has two good pitches and with a few small changes in his mechanics they will become even better. When he learns to successfully throw a slider a changeup he will become a very dangerous pitcher. He has a real possibility to join the young rotation in the majors in three to five years. This is a really good pick and the scouts did an excellent job scouting.
2009 Draft: Yankees First Round Pick | River Avenue Blues
I like the pick. You can’t complain about taking a high ceiling up-the-middle athlete in the first round, and Heathcott certainly has that kind of ability. The off-the-field issues are a concern, because with that kind of upbringing you do have to worry about the kid’s ability to discern right from wrong, but I’m confident that the Yanks will do everything possible to help him transition to life in professional baseball.
The LoHud Yankees Blog - Discussion with Yankees First Rounder Slade Heathcott
First round a surprise? "It was somewhat of a surprise. I had a feeling it might happen to a degree. But nothing was final. So it was still a pretty big surprise. I had (talked to the Yankees) quite a bit. I think it’ll be an excellent fit."
Medicineball: The Story of the 2009 Tampa Bay Rays Draft - DRaysBay
Something that 90% of the Rays picks share in common is an injury during their 2009 prep season.
Drunk Jays Fans: Did The Jays Go Over Slot to Take A Canadian?
Not going to lie to you, I care about 1000 times more that the Jays weren't scared off by the high price than I do that he's Canadian, but good on both fronts, I guess.
- Jays Draft Report, Day 1 - Bluebird Banter