I’m going to do this one like I did Friday’s recap. I’ll post just the bare bones to start off, and I’ll update the post as I go along. Recapping 30 picks (almost entirely made up of guys we’ve never heard of) is a tall order, and I feel that doing it this well helps keep me accountable. I expect to get most (if not all) of this done today (Sunday), but we’ll see how the day shakes out. I can’t really give much of an overall analysis of this class until I have a chance to look at each of these picks more thoroughly. Yes, the guys taken on days 1 and 2 are obviously the big names, but there’s always some intrigue on day 3. So let’s dig a little deeper, see what kinds of jewels the Giants might have unearthed this year.
Draft Day 3:
11. GREG BRODY, rhp | Belmont (sr) | 6-2, 185 | Age: 22
2014: 22 g, 8 sv, 1.57 era, 26 k, 5 bb
This dude is brand spanking new to pitching, at least at the collegiate level. He actually hit 7 hr as a freshman infielder, but his numbers fell a bit the next year. It looks like he missed all of 2013 (wasn’t listed as a redshirt though), and came out for his senior year as a newfound relief pitcher. He was named to the NCAA’s Stopper of the Year watch list, and had an impressive campaign as the Belmont closer. I haven’t been able to find a scouting report on him yet.
(Belmont Sports Information)
12. JAMESON HENNING, ss | Western IL (jr) | B:R T:R 6-4, 190 | Age: 21
2014: 197 ab, .310, 1 hr, 12-16 sb, 11 bb, 32 k
2013: 182 ab, .297, 1 hr, 7-9 sb, 6 bb, 33 k
Tall shortstop didn’t hit the cover off the ball in college, but the reports I’ve seen say he knows what he’s doing at the plate. Sounds like he’s a smooth defender as well. Matt Duffy didn’t hit much in college either, and look what he’s doing now! Honestly, that’s all I’ve got on this kid for the time being.
(WIU Visual Productions Center)
13. LUIS LACEN, cf | Puerto Rico (hs) | B:R T:R 6-3 195 | Age: 17
Say it like “Mt. Lassen.” He’s young for the high school class. This kid looks athletic, but the reports call him very raw (as you might assume). I’m no scout, but the Perfect Game videos I saw showed a kid with a projectable body and some serious bat speed. His swing looked ugly at times, but it turned impressive quickly once he got in a rhythm. Looks to get some loft under the ball. He’s not as polished of a player as Kevin Rivera, but he’s got loads more projection. Should battle it out with Joneshwy Fargas for Puerto Rican CF supremacy in the Giants farm system.
14. KEVIN RIVERA, 2b | Puerto Rico (hs) | B:S T:R 5-11 170 | Age: 18
He’s 17 now, but will turn 18 in a couple of days. Attended the Carlos Beltran Academy with Luis Lacen. He doesn’t have Lacen’s projectable body, but the reports call him a much more game-ready player at the moment. He’s athletic for his size, plays a clean infield, and the reports say he can play all over the diamond. His swing looks more line-drive, but it’s smooth and balanced, and I like it. I love these two picks. Honestly, they might actually be my favorites of the day.
15. BENTON MOSS, rhp | UNC (jr) | 6-2, 175 | Age: 21
2014: 15 gs, 97 ip, 3.62 era, 35 bb, 77 k
2013: 16 gs, 88.1 ip, 3.77, 34 bb, 92 k
2012: 16 gs, 79 ip, 1.94, 23 bb, 83 k
Pretty cool article about this guy on SFGiants.com, I’ll link it below. Could have gone pro out of high school, but UNC gave him one of the most prestigious academic scholarships in the country to come get an education. As someone who works in the college world, I think that’s pretty awesome. He sounds a little like Ryan Vogelsong already, and he hasn’t even thrown a professional pitch. Fastball goes 90-94, but he’s a guy who relies on control and secondary stuff. Reports give him a 12-6 curve and a slider, and he says his goal is to develop a changeup as a pro. This guy knows how to pitch, he thought he should have been drafted higher, and he’s a little pissed off about it. Great value, in my opinion.
16. KEVIN GINKEL, rhp | Southwestern CC | 6-4 210 | Age: 20
2014: 13 gs, 88 ip, 2.76, 18 bb, 58 k
The only video I can find is a highlight clip from his high school days. Back then he was a tall, skinny kid with an El-Duque type leg kick up by his head. He did show off a mix of different pitches, and had some nice control (in the video)… but it was not game action, just him facing a hitter in batting practice. He plays at a CC in Chula Vista, but it looks like he was committed to USD for next year. Those plans may be changing, but I’m not 100% sure on that.
17. CALEB SMITH, lhp | USC Aiken (jr) | 6-2 205 | Age: 20
2014: 17 g (4 gs), 26.2 ip, 3.71 era, 28 bb, 36 k
2013: 25 g, 24.2 ip, 1.82 era, 18 bb, 38 k
Lefty reliever for one of the top programs in D2. He’s got long hair, a big leg kick, and somewhat of what I’d call a violent delivery. Baseball America’s Clint Longenecker said he has “serious arm strength,” with a fastball running 92-95 and a career bb/9 of 8. Yeah, 8! In other words, the dude has NO IDEA where the ball is going when it leaves his hand. The Giants love these types of guys. David Lee (Augusta’s beat writer) follows this Aiken club pretty closely, and called Smith an exciting arm.
18. EDRICK AGOSTO, rhp | Puerto Rico (hs) | 6-3 240 | Age: 17
Solidly built righty from the International Baseball Academy in PR. Delivery looks very clean in the video I saw, and he’s got some pretty nice arms speed. A look at his Perfect Game profile shows a kid listed at 275 pounds, and looking very unathletic in the picture. Holy smokes! He’s got a low-90’s fastball and a four pitch arsenal. Obviously, with these prep kids, you have no idea how well they throw all four pitches, but it would seem like he could be used as a starter with that mix and his sturdy frame.
19. RICHARD AMION, cf | Alabama St (jr) | B:R T:R 5-10 190 | Age: 21
2014: 211 ab, .336, 4 hr, 17-25 sb, 37 bb, 43 k
2013: 200 ab, .270, 2 hr, 34-41 sb, 32 bb, 33 k
2012: 153 ab, .288, 36-42 sb, 24 bb, 31 k
Three year starter for Alabama State. I love this guy’s profile. He’s got plus speed, plus arm strength and range, and the defensive ability to stay in center field. He even looks to be a guy who can swing the bat at the professional level, with a swing that earned him nice reviews coming out of high school three years ago (where he hit .460 with 8 hr as a senior). If the bat can play at the next level, he might be a legitimate leadoff candidate.
20. BRET UNDERWOOD, cf | Northwestern St (jr) | B:L T:R 6-2, 200 | Age: 21
2014: 204 ab, .289, 0 hr, 18-20 sb, 20 bb, 32 k
Another center fielder with a slick head of hair (that almost seems to be a prerequisite for the Giants now), and the first lefty hitter taken by Sabean’s crew in this draft. Native of Alabama, he played one season at D1 NW State after spending two years at Faulkner State CC. He’s got an athletic build and some wheels on the base paths. College profile says he wants to be an MLB exec some day when his playing days are over. Sounds like a student of the game to me.
(Gary Hardamon/NSU Photographic Services)
21. MATT CROWNOVER, lhp | Clemson (so) | 5-11 205 | Age: 21
2014: 16 gs, 99.1 ip, 2.90 era, 20 bb, 90 k
2013: 14 gs, 70 ip, 2.19 era, 17 bb, 45 k
Draft-eligible sophomore may not sign here, as he’s a prime candidate to improve his stock with a big junior season at Clemson. The Giants will definitely have to pony up a good sum to get him on board. He was Georgia’s high school player of the year as a sophomore and junior, and one of the top draft prospects in the state coming out of school. Had Tommy John surgery in 2012, and it sounds like his stock took a big hit. Frosh All-America at Clemson, followed by a strong sophomore campaign this season. The reports call him a pitch ability guy, but I’ve also heard he can put a little something on his fastball. Not a prototypical pitcher’s frame, but he’s got some sweet arm speed. This would be a steal in the 21st round if the Giants can get him into the organization.
22. MARK REYES, lhp | Crowder CC | 6-1, 185 | Age: 21
2014: 13 gs, 2.20 era, 86 ip, 10 bb, 81 k
Two year player for Crowder CC after spending his freshman year with Arkansas. Looks like he was committed to Southern Miss for his senior season. Lefty with impressive walk rates for the Crowder Roughriders (gotta love that nickname), he was drafted by Baltimore during his senior year in high school. Led his HS team to a state title; tossed a 17-k gem in the state championship. He finished his senior year with a 10-1 record, 0.48 era, and 11 home runs at the dish. In other words, this kid was a stud, and Southern Miss called him one of the top JuCo southpaws in the country. He could run his fastball into the low-90’s coming into college, but I really have no idea whether he’s improved that velocity in the past three years or not. Very intriguing pick.
23. JORDAN JOHNSON, rhp | CSU Northridge (jr) | 6-2 175 | Age: 20
2014: 12 gs, 4.33 era, 72.2 IP, 15 BB, 39 K’s.
2013: 2 g (Injured)
2012: 3 g (Injured)
Pitchability righty who obviously had some sort of major injury that kept him out for nearly two full seasons. Originally from Elk Grove, drafted by the Rockies (42nd round) coming out of high school.
CSU Northridge Profile
24. MICHAEL PETERSEN, rhp | Riverside CC | 6-7 195 | Age: 20
Tall righty who hails from San Jose. Looks like he’s been drafted each year since he graduated high school (3 times). Maybe he finally signs? I couldn’t find any stats from this season, but his Perfect Game profile listed his fastball at 83-88. Keep in mind that was two years ago, so I would hope that velocity has improved a bit since then.
26. BYRON MURRAY, rf | Trinity Christian HS (FL) | B:R T:R 5-10 195 | Age: 18 (turns 19 this summer)
2014: .371, 6 hr |2013: .403, 7 hr
I’m very intrigued by this kid. Native of the Bahamas who went to high school in Florida. He’s got a stocky but athletic build, good speed and some serious raw power. Made waves by hitting a 450 foot homerun out of Marlins Park in the “Power Showcase” homerun derby. I found some video footage of him… you have to advance to about the 5:30 mark to see him taking hacks. My goodness does this kid have some bat speed (keep in mind it’s footage from a homerun derby). I really don’t know much else about him, or whether he’ll sign (committed to Southern Miss), but he seems to offer a tantalizing toolset, if not from a prototypical body.
26. HUNTER COLE, 3b/of | Georgia (jr) | B:R T:R 6-1 195 | Age: 21
2014: 207 ab, .319, 3 hr, 25 bb, 49 k
2013: 211 ab, .303, 4 hr, 27 bb, 50 k
2012: 192 ab, .276, 7 hr, 28 bb, 56 k
3-year starter for Georgia saw his stock slip, but I seriously can’t believe he fell this far. He was the #1 ranked prep player in South Carolina in 2011, drafted by Washington in the 49th round. Seven homers as a true freshman tell me he has some real power potential that he didn’t tap into during soph and junior seasons. Athletic kid who played OF until moving to 3B this season. Lots of K’s, lots of BB’s. No, his numbers aren’t all-world by any means, but getting a guy who hit .319 in the SEC is a nice haul in the 26th round. If the Giants can get some power out of that bat, this is a tremendous pick.
27. CONNOR KADEN, rhp | Wake Forest (jr) | 6-4 200 | Age: 21
2014: 17 g (12 gs), 61.1 ip, 3.52 era, 26 bb, 52 k
2013: 21 g, 30.1 ip, 3.56 era, 18 bb, 27 k
Big righty who transitioned to the Wake Forest rotation this year after pitching in relief in 2013. His Skipper says he’s got “Friday night power stuff,” with a 2-seamer, power slider and change. This is an interesting pick, as he’s obviously got a nice arm to work with, and one that doesn’t have a ton of miles on it to this point. Will the Giants start him or put him back in the pen? How’s that changeup looking? Again, nice value for a 27th pick, even if he’s just a hard-throwing middle-innings guy.
28. NICK SABO, lhp | CSU Long Beach (jr) | 6-5 220 | Age: 21
2014: 14 gs, 79 ip, 3.30 era, 28 bb, 49 k
Dirtbag lefty. We love those Dirtbags now thanks to Matt Duffy. Sabo had 53 bb and 85 k in 134 career innings for Long Beach. Great pitching frame, especially for a southpaw. He looks taller than 6-5 to me in the video here, and really gets the ball moving downhill. Also, he’ll forever be known as the guy drafted one pick after Johnny Manziel… so he’s got that going for him.
29. RYAN CRUZ, rhp | College of the Canyons | 6-3 215 | Age: 20
2014: 13 gs, 92 ip, 3.91 era, 40 bb, 62 k
2013: 13 gs, 76.2 ip, 3.17 era, 26 bb, 50 k
He’s been a workhorse for COC in the past two years. Seriously, I don’t know that I’ve ever seen a JuCo guy throw that many combined innings. The season preview article I read called him a power arm. As we all know, that could mean anything. I wish I knew more, but it’s not so easy to find good information on 29th round picks playing for community colleges.
30. COV COVINGTON, 1b | University of West Florida (sr) | B:L T:L 6-2 200 | Age: 22
2014: 131 ab, .321, 4 hr, 6-6 sb, 22 bb, 26 k
2013: 151 ab, .305, 1 hr, 9-11 sb, 31 bb, 34 k
D2 IF/OF who actually goes by the name Cliff. Four year college player (2 at CC, 2 at D2) who earned All-Region Gold Glove honors in both his seasons at West FL. Another guy with strong hair. Seriously, though, last year’s D2 stud was Blake Miller out of Western Oregon. Look what that guy is doing in San Jose. The Giants see something they like in all of these guys, regardless of where they come from. Love the name, and it sure would look sweet on a baseball card someday.
31. NICK NELSON, rhp | Rutherford HS (fl) | 6-1 195 | Age: 18
32. HUNTER WILLIAMS, lhp | Cosby HS (va) | 6-1 220 | Age: 18
UNC commit who could be a stud two-way player at the college level. Low-90’s arm; takes a smooth, powerful cut at the plate.
33. DEAC DEACON, c | CSU Fullerton (sr) | B:L T:R 6-0 190 | Age: 22
34. TIM SUSNARA, c | St Francis HS (ca) | B:L T:R 6-0 185 | Age: 18
Slick-fielding backstop from Redwood City. I’m in awe of his swing in the video I’ve seen. Would love it if they could find a way to sign this kid, but these are probably all longshots. Oregon commit.
35. MITCH HART, rhp | Granite Bay HS (ca) | 6-3 190 | Age: 18
Committed to USC, another low-90’s arm with a great frame and potential to dream on. Hey kid, see you in three years…
36. ZACH TAYLOR, c | Horizon HS (az) | B:R T:R 6-1 220 | Age: 18
Switch-hitting C/IF who looks like a 30 year-old man. Perfect Game likes his tools behind the dish, says he’s mid-90’s on the mound as well. Again, does he consider signing?
37. GARRETT CHRISTMAN, ss | Noblesville HS (in) | B:L T:R 6-2 180 | Age: 17
38. BENITO SANTIAGO, c | Coral Springs Christian HS (fl) | B:L T:R 5-9 175 | Age: 19
I’ve seen the video of Benito Jr. He doesn’t throw from his knees. Bummer.
39. JOE RYAN, rhp | Sir Francis Drake HS (ca) | 6-1 185 | Age: 18
40. RILES MAHAN, ss | Moeller HS (oh) | B:L T:R 6-3 185 | Age: 18