First off, thanks to everyone at RaysBaseball for helping with this draft.
Here were the picks:
- Tim Lincecum, RHP, Washington
- Emmanuel Burriss, SS, Kent State
- Aaron Bates, 1B, NC State
- Matt McBride, C, Lehigh
- Nick Fuller, RHP, Georgia HS
- This was a toss-up between Lincecum and Lincoln, which was made easier when Lincoln was taken with the 2nd pick.
- Really wanted one of the HS arms (Betances, Latos, Kiker) or highly regarded college guys (Kennedy and Hamilton) to fall here but they were snatched up quickly in the late/supplemental 1st. This pick came down to Burriss or Adam Ottavino and I loved Burriss's upside over Ottavino's.
- This was one of the easier picks to make after the pitchers we wanted were taken. Wade LeBlanc, Sean Black, and Cory Rasmus went off the board and the highest rated guy everyone had going into the round was Aaron Bates. I think this was a steal in the 3rd.
- We all agreed that McBride was the best college catcher available in the draft and when he dropped to us, there was no hesitation.
- There was a bit of disagreement on this pick in terms of the player chosen, but everyone wanted a pitcher. The first choice was Fuller due to his upside, velocity, and his nasty slider. The concern that arose later was his violent delivery, which should be able to be ironed out. Others in the discussion were Casey Hudspeth and Jacob Brigham.
Burriss is the X factor if he maxes out his tools and turns them into skills. Lincecum is a major league pitcher, something the Rays need more than anything right now. Bates has great plate discipline which the Rays system lacks right now. McBride gives the system depth at Catcher which is also a weak spot. Fuller could move to relief and become a dominant closer with his mid-90's FB and nasty slider. He's been compared to Brad Lidge and the Rays lack a dominating presence in the late innings.
Overall, I'd grade our draft an A-
Disappointed that none of the high upside HS arms fell to us in the 2nd round, but I think the Fuller pick will make up for it in the long run.
Any thoughts on the Rays draft???
What grade would you give us???