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  • Draft Series - Part 4: Five for 45

    This is the fourth in a series of (somewhat) weekly installments leading up to the June 5th through 7th draft. The focus is intended to be very Twins-specific.

    Part 1: Locals
    Part 2: The Top
    Part 3: What's New?
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    While you may read the title and think Iím referring to a 10-game Pedro Florimon stretch, Iím actually going to spotlight a handful of players who could be in play when the Twins go on the clock with the 45th overall pick.

    Forecasting these possibilities is far from easy and the reasons are obvious. Itís hard to predict who the top five players who go off the board will be; itís impossible to predict who the 44 guys will be that arenít available for the Twins to choose from.

    ***I woke up this morning and realized, "Hey, the Twins don't draft 45th." They draft 46th, all the points still remain.***

    It is my personal conjecture that the avenue the Twins go with their first round pick will have an effect on how they use their second pick. For example, if the Twins take SS Nick Gordon at #5, they would be less likely to take another shortstop in the second round. While the Twins could conceivably go back-to-back pitchers (or even prep pitchers), that's not a common path theyíve taken (though it was the way chosen in 2013).

    LHP Mac Marshall (Lilburn, GA): Marshallís value seemed to spike early as he performed exceptionally at the Perfect Game National Showcase at the Metrodome. He showed more velocity and more raw tools than he ever had previously and he made a case to be a mid- to late-first round pick. In their most recent rankings, both Baseball America and Perfect Game have Marshall rated as the 53rd-best draft prospect, which would put him right in line with the Twins 2nd-round pick.

    The pitcher that Marshall is now is a three-pitch guy. The lefty typically sits in the 88-91 range, but can reach back and hit as high as 94. Professionally, his best results are going to come when heís in the high-80s range. Marshallís best pitch is his 80 mph change-up. Perfect Game calls the pitch the best any draft-eligible lefty throws and also ranks it the 3rd best among all prep pitchers. Rounding out his repertoire, Marshall also throws a curveball with true downhill break. It has the potential to be above-average and itís best when heís throwing it in the mid-70s.

    The young lefty evokes comparisons to current Ray Matt Moore (6-3, 200) and they are about the same size (Marshall is 6-2, 185).

    LHP Cody Reed (Athens, AL): Reed is being vastly undervalued. Baseball America has Reed ranked #44, while Perfect Game has him all the way down at #81. You can throw those rankings out the window, though. The Twins have this southpaw ranked much, much higher. Reed pitched this summer at 220 with a fastball that barely broke 90. Six months - and apparently 40 pounds of Southern-style cookiní later - Reed is 260 and pumping mid-90s gas. This Vanderbilt commit is no one-trick pony though. His change-up is a work in progress, but both of his breaking balls (slider and curve) are coming along nicely.

    Reed has been completely dominant in his final high school season and, according to Baseball America, has recorded 84% of his outs this year via strikeout. He also has a 21-strikeout game to his record. It goes without saying that the conditioning will need to be monitored closely, ainít nobody want CC Sabathia walking through that door. Only we do. We want the fat CCÖ. and his Cy Youngs.

    RHP Michael Cederoth (San Diego St): Cederoth was one of the first names in this draft class that people started to hear about. The reason was that Cederoth was touching 100 mph the fall before his sophomore year. Cederoth has struggled with his control and has found himself in a relief role where his fastball plays up and he can concentrate more on throwing just that and his slider.

    Baseball America ranks Cederoth #46 and Perfect Game has him at #63. It will be interesting to see which team thinks they can successfully convert the college hard-thrower into a starter, a move the Twins have attempted to make a number of time in the recent past. The knock on Cederoth is that heís got a violent delivery, one that might be best suited for short stints.

    SS TiíQuan Forbes (Columbia, MS): If the Twins end up with Nick Gordon high on their board in the first round and miss, Forbes would be a more-than-adequate consolation prize. Forbes doesnít come without question marks; in fact, he comes with a toolshed full of them. But the Twins have always been drawn to guys with lots of tools and Forbes has a lot of same qualities that Niko Goodrum did coming out of high school.

    Forbes is currently 6-4, 180 and, like Goodrum, the perception is that his future position is anywhere but shortstop. His qualities - in both his hands and his balance point - suggest the infield is a reasonable destination. His arm, though, is not the arm youíd want to put deep in the hole.

    Both Baseball America (55) and Perfect Game (60), rank Forbes as a potential 2nd rounder. Could he be a match for the Twins?

    OF/RHP Dylan Davis (Oregon State): Davis is gradually turning into one of my ďpersonal cheeseballsĒ. Not because I think heís going to turn into the best player from this class, but simply because heís very unique. Davis was a very highly regarded pitcher coming out of high school. He was throwing mid-90 gas and only a strong commitment to Oregon State kept him from getting drafted. As it turns out, Davis made his contributions first as a hitter and through two rounds in the Cape Cod - a league which churns out Twins draftees at a very high rate - further solidified his status as a future outfielder.

    But hereís the rub: Davis is up to 97 and has a potentially wipeout slider. But before you turn around and call him a pitcher, remember heís got, arguably, the most right-handed raw power of any player in this draft.

    So what the heck do you do? Well, the most likely scenario is that a team drafts him and calls him an outfielder. Maybe a team likes him and tries to make him a starter. OrÖ maybe a team drafts him as a right fielder and still lets him relieve once or twice a week. I mean, the Twins do love versatility. This would bring the versatility game to a whole new level.

    ----

    So, what do you think?
    Comments 22 Comments
    1. cmb0252's Avatar
      cmb0252 -
      Not only do I believe a system can never have enough LHPers but that seems to be a strength this year. I have been a huge Marshall/Forrest fan but also wouldn't mind Reed. I'm also very interested in RHPer Spencer Adams but I believe he has pitched himself into the 1st round.

      One thing you bring up that is something I have thought about a lot is if the Twins draft a HS player in the first round would they feel comfortable grabbing another one in the 2nd round? A name I believe you (i could be wrong) linked the Twins to earlier in the year was Luke Weaver. He could fit the Ryan Eades role as a once potential top 15 pick college RHPer who fell to the second round. Maybe I'm just over thinking things.
    1. Jeremy Nygaard's Avatar
      Jeremy Nygaard -
      I agree completely. I actually had three more names that took off (because Eight for 45 didn't sound right) and they were: Justus Sheffield, Michael Gettys and Luke Weaver.

      I have not been told this, but I believe that the organization would be comfortable taking two preps to start the draft. Two reasons: 1) Crazy HS pitching depth 2) The Twins have more quality arms in the minors than they've ever had before (at least in the last 10-12 years) and can afford to add upside.
    1. maxisagod's Avatar
      maxisagod -
      Quote Originally Posted by Jeremy Nygaard View Post
      I agree completely. I actually had three more names that took off (because Eight for 45 didn't sound right) and they were: Justus Sheffield, Michael Gettys and Luke Weaver.

      I have not been told this, but I believe that the organization would be comfortable taking two preps to start the draft. Two reasons: 1) Crazy HS pitching depth 2) The Twins have more quality arms in the minors than they've ever had before (at least in the last 10-12 years) and can afford to add upside.
      Seeing how low Weaver has been ranking on lists lately and how high the Twins have been on him, makes me think he is a possibility in the 2nd for the Hometown team.
    1. Seth Stohs's Avatar
      Seth Stohs -
      In 2012, they took Buxton and then followed that with Berrios, so they certainly wouldn't be at all worried about that.
    1. Willihammer's Avatar
      Willihammer -
      I'd love to see Medeiros fall to the Twins in the 2nd round. BA has him at 35 atm.
    1. cmb0252's Avatar
      cmb0252 -
      Quote Originally Posted by Jeremy Nygaard View Post
      I agree completely. I actually had three more names that took off (because Eight for 45 didn't sound right) and they were: Justus Sheffield, Michael Gettys and Luke Weaver.

      I have not been told this, but I believe that the organization would be comfortable taking two preps to start the draft. Two reasons: 1) Crazy HS pitching depth 2) The Twins have more quality arms in the minors than they've ever had before (at least in the last 10-12 years) and can afford to add upside.
      That's great to hear. I would hate for them to skip over talent to have a safer draft. While they did draft two HS players in a row in 2012 they did spend 9 of their next 11 top 10 round picks on college players.

      Justus Sheffield seems like a Berrios type pick. Under sized pitcher but big time stuff. Definitely seems like a Twins pick and I wouldn't mind it at all.

      As for Gettys he would be the steal of the draft. Would love for him to fall that far but with the lack of quality position players in this draft I feel someone might take a chance on his huge ceiling before we pick again. Doesn't mean I can dream!
    1. clutterheart's Avatar
      clutterheart -
      Quote Originally Posted by Jeremy Nygaard View Post
      2) The Twins have more quality arms in the minors than they've ever had before (at least in the last 10-12 years) and can afford to add upside.
      Agree. Which is why I would have no problem with them going crazy on position players and college arms as some good guys might fall as teams try to load up. This draft is an opportunity to get some position players as other team goes for arms
    1. Jeremy Nygaard's Avatar
      Jeremy Nygaard -
      Quote Originally Posted by Willihammer View Post
      I'd love to see Medeiros fall to the Twins in the 2nd round. BA has him at 35 atm.
      That would be a steal, but he keeps getting better and better. I could see him continuing to ascend into the middle of the first round.
    1. gunnarthor's Avatar
      gunnarthor -
      Here's how mlbpipeline ranks these guys:
      Marshall 58
      Reed 61
      Davis 66
      Cederoth 52
      Forbes 51

      Just for fun, the 2011 draft rankings of our picks were Michael ranked at 31 (they only went 50 deep). In 2012 it was Buxton 1, Berrios 46, Walker 50, Chargois 67, Melatokis 91. Last year it was Stewart 7, Eades 29, Gonzalez 98 in the top 100. That doesn't tell us much other than their lists get a bit crazy pretty quickly. Bobby Wuhl, for instance, was ranked #30 on their list and fell to Oakland in the 5th round.
    1. Jeremy Nygaard's Avatar
      Jeremy Nygaard -
      Right. Signability becomes pretty significant pretty early. I think Wahl was dealing with an arm thing around draft time, and that played into his tumble. (I think... I could be wrong.)
    1. gunnarthor's Avatar
      gunnarthor -
      Reed sounds a lot like Hudson Boyd, which could be a good thing - i.e. the Twins have drafted that body type before, or bad - Boyd has been bad. Marshall sounds intriguing as does Davis.

      Twins have been scouting GA like crazy the last few years - I remember reading an article years ago about them wanting to improve scouting in that area and they hired that wonderful scout from Tampa and put Ryan in charge of regional scouting before he came back as GM. So they might really like Marshall. I wonder if Gettys could fall to them? They've also drafted a lot of relief pitchers in the 2nd round under Deron Johnson - maybe Lindgren? I don't think Burdi falls that far but if he did, I think they'd jump on him.
    1. Jeremy Nygaard's Avatar
      Jeremy Nygaard -
      The Twins drafted Burdi out high school.

      The scout that's in Georgia is Jack Powell, he drafted Matt Moore (Tampa) and Jose Bautista (Pittsburgh).
    1. diehardtwinsfan's Avatar
      diehardtwinsfan -
      I'd argue that it's possible Fede or Hoffman might be there at 2 as well. I'd say the odds are low, but both being out for TJ along with a few hard to sign HS guys, those are guys I'd think long and hard about grabbing if they had drafted someone like Gordon who may go underslot a bit.
    1. Cris E's Avatar
      Cris E -
      This whole article should have been thrown out. 45? Gimme a break...
    1. gunnarthor's Avatar
      gunnarthor -
      Quote Originally Posted by Cris E View Post
      This whole article should have been thrown out. 45? Gimme a break...
      I know this is probably tongue in cheek but ... Jeremy had asked what kind of draft articles we wanted and many of us said we wanted to have better discussions about the possible second round picks. We've already had enough discussion about the first pick. And Jeremy's obviously doing some hardwork to do this so I'm glad he put this out there, even if Marshall isn't our pick.
    1. Jeremy Nygaard's Avatar
      Jeremy Nygaard -
      Quote Originally Posted by Cris E View Post
      This whole article should have been thrown out. 45? Gimme a break...
      I blame it all on the compensatory picks. Teams slide up, teams slide down. When Kirby did his mock through 45, I was like, "Sweet, Twins..." only to realize they drafted #46. #Brainfart apparently
    1. Paul Pleiss's Avatar
      Paul Pleiss -
      Jeremy, what I'd like to see is you start predicting Twins draft picks in rounds 16-25. I'd be okay with you just making up names, as long as they are good baseball names. A prep short stop Sloppy Butterfingers would be a great grab in the 19th round, but they'd likely have to give him some extra dollar bills to keep him from attending Le Cordon Bleu cooking school where he hopes to turn his butter fingers into delicious chocolate chip cookie hands.
    1. AM.'s Avatar
      AM. -
      Butterfingers has really looked good this spring. He'll probably go in the 12-14 range.
    1. birdwatcher's Avatar
      birdwatcher -
      The Twins like Sloppy Butterfinger's makeup.
    1. Jeremy Nygaard's Avatar
      Jeremy Nygaard -
      Quote Originally Posted by birdwatcher View Post
      The Twins like Sloppy Butterfinger's makeup.
      Yeah, but is he versatile? Can he play the OF in a pinch?
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