Gunther's Barely Informed Day 3 Recap of the Cubs Draft (picks 11-20)

Gunther's Barely Informed Day 3 Recap of the Cubs Draft (picks 11-20)

The draft is over and at this point the attention turns to who will be signed. Day 3 is an interesting day in this post-CBA spending limits draft world. Players drafted on day 3 can be signed for any amount up to $100,000 dollars but any dollar over that amount counts against the bonus pool money a team has. Below are the estimates that I put forward in my day 2 recap. If accurate the Cubs should have about $500,000 to try to lure some guys to forgo college and start their pro careers.

1st Round $4,621,200:
C Kyle Schwarber (My Estimated Signing Bonus-3.8 million)
2nd Round $1,250,400:
RHP Jake Stinnett (My Estimated Signing Bonus-1 million)
3rd Round $714,900:
C Mark Zagunis (Confirmed Signing Bonus-615K)
4th Round $480,600:
LHP Carson Sands (Estimated Signing Bonus-1 million)
5th Round $359,900:
LHP Justin Steel (My Estimated Signing Bonus- 360K)
6th Round $269,500:
RHP Dylan Cease (My Estimated Signing Bonus-1 million)
7th Round $201,900:
RHP James Norwood (My Estimated Signing Bonus-250k)
8th Round $161,800:
LHP Tommy Thorpe (My Estimated Signing Bonus-100k)
9th Round $151,000:
RHP James Farris (My Estimated Signing Bonus-50k)
10th Round $141,000:
RHP Ryan Williams (My Estimated Signing Bonus-10k)
Estimated Total Spent- $8,185,000
Total Pool- $8,769,810
Difference- $584,810

Day 3 reminds me of the movie The Scout. Albert Brooks as a scout talks about his role to go into the jungle and find the next Kong. I am not certain the Cubs found their Kong on day 3, but there are certainly some interesting guys on that list. And the Cubs have the ability to lure a few of those guys into the fold to make the draft a very strong crop for the farm, potentially the deepest draft the front office has had since taking over the Cubs. Yagu at PSD has created a very simple tool to keep track of signings here. That is worth checking out to stay on top of the signings.

11 319 Jordan Brink RHP JR
Brink like Stinnett is a recent convert to full time pitching. The results have been mixed at this point, but the Cubs nabbed a high profile prospect with their first day 3 pick at 102 according to MLB.com and 164 according to Baseball America. Here is the MLB.com scouting report.

Scouting Grades: Fastball: 60 | Curveball: 60 | Changeup: 40 | Control: 40 | Overall: 45
There have been some interesting pitching prospects in recent Drafts who came late to full-time pitching, including first-rounders Braden Shipley in 2013 and Kyle Zimmer in 2012. While Brink isn't quite that high-profile, he has the chance to do well now that he's focused only on the mound.

An outfielder for his first two years at Fresno State, Brink split time between playing that position and pitching as a sophomore then turned to pitching full-time in 2014. He's athletic, if a bit undersized, with the makings of two plus pitches in his fastball and spike curveball, which looks like a hard slider at times. He's working on developing his changeup.

The jury is still out on whether Brink can start long-term -- sometimes a bias against undersized right-handers -- or he'll end up in the bullpen. Either way, his arm looks like it has a shot to pitch at the highest level.

It seems likely that Brink is going to sign as well.

Kong potential-30%

12 349 Tanner Griggs RHP J2


This comes from Baseball America earlier in the year:

11. Tanner Griggs, rhp, Angelina (Texas) JC: Cosart’s prep teammate at Clear Creek High in Texas, he’s a loose-armed projection pick with a 90-93 mph fastball.

So athletic, younger college pitcher that has projection. Throws hard and has potential to be a reliever if he can't figure out his control issues. This definitely seems to be the profile the Cubs front office looks for in pitcher during the draft.
Kong potential-15%

13 379 Kevonte Mitchell 3B HS

 

Raw athletic pick that seems more of the mold of a Jim Hendry pick in all honesty. However, according to the chart it seems like the Cubs are going to be able to lure him into the minors. Kong potential-35%

14 409 Chesny Young 2B JR

 

Here is a report from Baseball America.

This spring, Young built on his Atlantic Sun freshman of the year campaign by winning conference player of the year honors, leading the offense-oriented Bears to a No. 3 seed in the NCAA tournament. Young led all Division I players with 106 hits and ranked sixth in batting, finishing with a .402/.458/.538 line. This summer, coaches universally praised his approach and pitch recognition at the plate, as Young posted a .325/.470/.442 line. Young led the Northwoods in on-base percentage, walking in 20 percent of his plate appearances and striking out in just 8 percent. From a wide base and an open stance, Young has good plate coverage, bat control and a line-drive-oriented swing path. The righthanded hitter has a gap-to-gap approach and below-average present power (two home runs). He is an above-average straight-line runner who stole 12 bases but posts home-to-first times in the 4.4-second range. Young was one of the better pure athletes in the NWL, standing out for his lateral movements and short-area quickness. Without profile power for third base and a fringe-average arm, Young likely profiles best at second base, where he has a chance to be a solid-average defender. At 6 feet, 180 pounds, Young has a long, lean and rangy build that has some present immaturity but will get stronger.

Solid hitter without power that projects to be a second baseman gives a pretty good indication why he slipped into day 3. Young is an interesting guy in that he seems like a guy that the Cardinals would take in all honest.
Kong potential-5%

15 439 Jeremy Null RHP JR

From Baseball America:

A 6-foot-8, 230-pound behemoth with a 90-93 fastball and a swing-and-miss slider, Null went 9-2, 3.36 last spring and was solid in the Cape League.

Null was ranked in the top 500 by Baseball America at 441. A tall guy that sits in the low 90s makes me think of Kameron Loe, but that is a lazy comp without seeing the player. Kong potential-10% 16 469 Jason Vosler SS JR Not much information out there on Jason Vosler, but a spray chart from two years ago shows a dead pull hitter it seems. Numbers suggest he has some pop especially if he can stick in the middle infield. Kong potential-5%

17 499 Michael Knighton RHP J2

 

The only things available on Knighton beyond sharing a name with someone more famous than him is that he was the ace of his junior college pitching staff. You have his numbers which are solid, but given the lack of information it is safe to say his Kong potential is low. Kong potential-1%

18 529 Austyn Willis RHP HS


According to NCSA his top fastball reached 91 when they were clocking him. Willis is an athletic two way player though. Last year he earned player of the year honors for his league. Here is the write up on it:

Austyn Willis, DSL Player of the Year
Willis did it all for the Aztecs this year. He set the tone early in the season by tossing an April 3 no-hitter against Silverado in a 3-0 Barstow win. As if being a top-shelf pitcher weren’t enough, he also led the Desert Sky League in hitting.

“Austyn is a focused player who is always ready for the challenge of whatever the situation,” said Aztecs head coach Kenny Phillips.

If the challenge was at the plate, Willis answered by finishing the season with a league-leading .382 average. His slugging percentage of .603 was second in the DSL, he was third in on-base percentage at .462 and in home runs, with two. He scored 15 runs and had 26 hits, including five doubles which tied him with Austin Crank for the most on the team, and he went 2-for-2 in stolen bases.

Then there are the pitching numbers. In addition to the no-hitter, Willis also threw a one-hitter and a two-hitter this year. He had a 5-3 record with a miniscule 1.81 ERA. Over 58 innings pitched he struck out 63 batters, which led the league, and walked just 16.

For coach Phillips, the best thing about his Player of the Year is that Willis, a junior, will be back with the team next year.

“Austyn is a very coachable kid and I’m looking forward to seeing his senior season first-hand,” said the coach. “I think this season was just a warm-up for things to come next year.”

Kong potential-3%

19 559 Brad Markey RHP SR


There is a bit more information on Markey due to playing in a bigger conference. Here is a scouting report on the shortest player drafted by the Cubs:

2014 Early Season Notes
High leg raise & overhand arm slot
Strike thrower
Fastball sits 88-90, touches 92, with sink
Curve is an above average pitch with nice break
Curve 78-79
Average change
Shows above average command
Solid senior sign for 2014

Seems a bit different type of pick as he is a guy with an above average breaking ball without the plus fastball. The profile the Cubs seemed to have favored is guys with the big fastball first and foremost. The thinking being that you can teach a kid a breaking ball and command. The late draft picks that aren't high profile rated prospects also seem to have some connection to guys the Cubs were connected to in the earlier rounds.
Kong potential-5%

20 589 John Tomasovich SS SR
The most interesting thing about Tomasovich might be his first name.

Is he John or Alex? I am not sure that we will ever have to find out, but he is a senior college bat. He is not ranked by Baseball America, but his statistics are interesting given his plate discipline.


Kong potential-1%

Picks 11-20 Conclusion
Mitchell has the biggest upside of the picks in this range, but Brink and Griggs are the most likely to reach their potential out of the rest. The rest of the guys don't have too high of ceiling based on the available information, but arms can surprise sometimes. The bats are unlikely to make much of an impact, but Chesny Young just seems like that type of hitter that Jeff Luhnow grabbed so many times for the Cardinals that developed into an above average player like Matt Carpenter.

As of right now 6 of 10 players have given strong indications that they will sign according to Yagu's signing tracker. John Arguello believes that the Cubs will ink their first 20 picks. IF that is true I do think there is a better than solid argument that this is the deepest Theo Epstein draft here.

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