Draft Notes: Bickford, Royals, Stewart, Twins

We've already had one post's worth of draft news today, and now here's the latest…

  • Other teams believe that the Royals have reached a deal to take right-handed high schooler Phil Bickford with the eighth overall pick, Peter Gammons reports (Twitter link).  Bickford, who is committed to Cal State Fullerton, hasn't been evaluated as No. 8 pick material — Baseball America ranks Bickford as the 20th best prospect in the draft, MLB.com's Jonathan Mayo has him at No. 26 and ESPN's Keith Law (Insider subscription required) has him all the way down at No. 55.
  • The Twins will take right-handed high schooler Kohl Stewart with the fourth overall pick, a source "with a stake in the Twins' draft" tells Darren Wolfson of 1500ESPN.com (Twitter link).  The source says that Stewart, a Houston native, won't be taken first overall by his hometown Astros and that Oklahoma righty Jonathan Gray won't fall to the Twins at #4.
  • The Twins would be "pleased" if Gray or third baseman Kris Bryant made it past the first three picks, La Velle E. Neal III of the Minneapolis Star Tribune reports.  It isn't as certain if the club would be happy if Stanford right-hander Mark Appel was still available, as Appel is advised by Scott Boras and would likely be a tougher sign.
  • The Twins were one of the last teams to do extensive medical research on pitching prospects but scouting director Deron Johnson tells 1500ESPN.com's Phil Mackey that the team have been much more thorough over the last three years.  Four MInnesota pitchers taken in the first- or supplementary round between 2008-10 have undergone arm surgeries, three of them Tommy John cases.
  • Several Red Sox executives, including GM Ben Cherington, have scouted high school outfielders Austin Meadows and Clint Frazier, Peter Abraham of the Boston Globe reports.  Abraham predicts the Red Sox will take Meadows with the seventh overall pick unless Stewart or possibly Colin Moran are still available.
  • Since the Padres have a number of good arms in their minor league system, MLB.com's Corey Brock predicts the team will take a position player with the 13th overall pick.


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