Manny Machado Rumors
- Heath Bell told Ephraim Fischbein of New York Baseball Digest that he's happy in San Diego, but would like to return to the Mets if the Padres decide to go in a different direction.
- Andrew Baggarly of the Mercury News (via Twitter) applauds the Giants' signings of Juan Uribe and Aubrey Huff, who cost the club roughly $3MM each.
- Mark Tracy is excited to be a part of the Rockies along with his father, manager Jim Tracy, writes MLB.com's Thomas Harding. Colorado selected the skipper's son in the 22nd round of the 2010 Draft.
- Contrary to a report late last night, the Angels and Red Sox did not agree to a swap of Gary Matthews Jr. and Mike Lowell over the winter, a major league source told Scott Lauber of the Boston Herald.
- David Lennon of Newsday (via Twitter) writes that it's an 80% possibility that the Mets non-tender John Maine after this season.
- ESPN's Buster Olney says that the Indians are likely to move some veterans in the weeks leading up to the trade deadline, but they could be a dangerous team to face until then because of Fausto Carmona, Justin Masterson, and Jake Westbrook (Insider req'd).
- MLB.com's Jenifer Langosch says to expect negotiations between the Pirates and their top draft picks Jameson Taillon and Stetson Allie to go right down to the August 16th signing deadline.
- The Pirates had a long debate about who to take with the second overall pick in last week's draft according to Chuck Finder of The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, and it wasn't until last weekend that they decided on Jameson over Manny Machado.
- Meanwhile Rob Biertempfel of The Pittsburgh Tribune-Review says the Pirates won't rush their top prospects. Once those prospects are promoted to the big league team, their minor league roster spots will be filled by players currently on ML roster (after they're optioned down) or by "signing low-cost, minor league free agents."
- Paul Hoynes of The Cleveland Plain Dealer doesn't see the Indians offering anyone but Shin-Soo Choo a multi-year deal, including the resurgent Austin Kearns.
- Newsday's David Lennon thinks it might make sense for the Mets to "consider opening extension talks" with catcher Rod Barajas before the season ends and he hits the free agent market.
Manny Machado has heard the Alex Rodriguez comparisons, like everyone else. The Orioles’ first round selection is a big high school shortstop from the Miami area, so A-Rod was an unavoidable point of reference. Machado finds the comparisons flattering - to a point.
“I’m Manny Machado,” he said after celebrating the draft with about 25 family members. “I can’t be like anybody else. You’ve got to be yourself.”
Before long, Machado could be making a name for himself in the same organization as recent first rounders Nick Markakis, Matt Wieters and Brian Matusz. Orioles scouting director Joe Jordan says he was drawn to Machado’s enthusiasm for the game and, most of all, his talent.
“He’s going to automatically be one of the premier prospects in the organization,” Jordan said.
Technically, the Orioles have to sign Machado before that happens. Whether the shortstop likes the A-Rod comparisons or not, Machado definitely has something in common with Rodriguez: Scott Boras. That connection has intimidated teams before, but Jordan expressed confidence that the Orioles will sign Machado.
“He’s going to be a Baltimore Oriole,” Jordan said. “I have no doubt about that.”
Wieters, another Boras client, obtained the highest bonus in Orioles history when he signed for $6MM in 2007.
Ever since the A's called Rick Monday's name 45 years ago, teams have relied on the MLB draft to stock their systems with talented young players. Today, teams have the chance to draft the next Joe Mauer (1st overall, 2001), the next Carl Crawford (52nd overall, 1999) or the next Albert Pujols (13th round, 1999). Or, they could end up with the next Matt Bush (1st overall, 2004).
Here's this year's draft order, from River Ave. Blues, to be updated after each selection (links go to MLB.com):
- Nationals - Bryce Harper
- Pirates - Jameson Taillon
- Orioles - Manny Machado
- Royals - Christian Colon
- Indians - Drew Pomeranz
- Diamondbacks - Barret Loux
- Mets - Matt Harvey
- Astros - Delino DeShields Jr.
- Padres - Karsten Whitson
- Athletics - Michael Choice
- Blue Jays - Deck McGuire
- Reds - Yasmani Grandal
- White Sox - Chris Sale
- Brewers - Dylan Covey
- Rangers - Jake Skole
- Cubs - Hayden Simpson
- Rays - Josh Sale
- Angels - Kaleb Cowart
- Astros - Michael Foltynewicz
- Red Sox - Kolbrin Vitek
- Twins - Alex Wimmers
- Rangers - Kellin Deglan
- Marlins - Christian Yelich
- Giants - Gary Brown
- Cardinals - Zack Cox
- Rockies - Kyle Parker
- Phillies - Jesse Biddle
- Dodgers - Zach Lee
- Angels - Cam Bedrosian
- Angels - Chevez Clarke
- Rays - Justin O'Conner
- Yankees - Cito Culver
Click here for the results of Compensation Round A, picks #33-50.
The first round of the MLB draft kicks off at 6pm CST today. Links to start you off, with new ones being added to the bottom of the post:
- MLB.com's Mark Newman prepares you for the festivities by outlining MLB's many facets of draft coverage. Here's a reminder of the draft order.
- The Pirates pick second, and Chuck Finder of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette believes they're leaning toward shortstop Manny Machado over pitcher Jameson Taillon. GM Neal Huntington explained that they will have no problem selecting a Scott Boras client. Jeff Zrebiec of the Baltimore Sun says the Orioles would then take Taillon, who they favor anyway. Jim Callis of Baseball America has a different point of view, saying the Pirates lean toward Taillon.
- The Blue Jays have the #11 pick. Bob Elliott of the Toronto Sun suggests they have a big draft budget and an eye on Delino DeShields, Jr., Josh Sale, and Deck McGuire as potential first-round picks. Scouting director Andrew Tinnish is emphasizing athleticism and upside, as well as up-the-middle positions.
- Dodgers assistant GM Logan White hinted that they could again take a high school pitcher, writes Dylan Hernandez of the L.A. Times. The Dodgers have the #28 pick in the first round.
- The Tigers start at #44, having given #19 to the Astros for Jose Valverde. John Lowe of the Detroit Free Press quotes scouting director David Chadd: "We have a history of being aggressive. I don't see that changing."
- Phillies scouting director Marti Wolever told Paul Hagen of the Philadelphia Inquirer that the team will take the best available player early and will lean toward catching, lefthanded pitching, and middle infielders later. The Phils' first pick is #27.
- The Rockies are at #26, and Troy E. Renck of the Denver Post says they've scouted Aaron Sanchez, Nick Castellanos, and Kevin Gausman heavily. Links on player names in this post go to MLB.com scouting reports.
- John Maffei of the North County Times deduced that the Padres might take a center fielder like Michael Choice or Kolbrin Vitek, but MLB.com's Corey Brock tweets his opinion that they will take a pitcher such as Karsten Whitson. The Padres have the #9 pick.
More draft news from around the web..
- The Pirates will take either shortstop Manny Machado or righthander Jameson Taillon with the second overall pick, tweets ESPN's Buster Olney. Earlier today, it was reported that the Bucs were looking at Machado, or Taillon but were also considering a "college pitcher".
- The Brewers' have had countless "what if" moments in the draft in recent years, including almost nabbing Wade Davis in 2004, writes Adam McCalvy of MLB.com.
- Several Red Sox shared their memories of draft day with Daniel Barbarisi of The Providence Journal.
- A pair of Illinois prospects should go in the early rounds of the draft, writes Mike Helfgot for the Chicago Tribune. Mike Foltynewicz, a Texas commit ranked amongst the top 50 prospects in this class by Baseball America, will likely be the first.
As Mike Rizzo recently suggested, for baseball's general managers and scouting directors, the Super Bowl isn't eight months away -- it's tomorrow. Here are a few more links in anticipation of the 2010 draft....
- Zack Cox is looking for "[Pedro] Alvarez money" which could cause him to slip in the draft, multiple sources tell Kevin Goldstein of Baseball Prospectus (via Twitter). Alvarez, taken second overall by the Pirates in 2008, signed a four-year deal worth $6.355MM. On top of that, Cox is said to be seeking a major league deal, tweets ESPN's Keith Law.
- The Nats will take Bryce Harper No. 1, barring any drastic changes, GM Mike Rizzo told MASN's Debbi Taylor. If they do take Harper, Washington will move him to the outfield, according to a baseball source who spoke to Bill Ladson of MLB.com.
- Despite not having a first round pick, the Tigers are confident they can find talent in the later rounds, writes MLive.com's Steve Kornacki.
- The Pirates have narrowed their choices to include Manny Machado, Jameson Taillon, or a college pitcher, writes Jenifer Langosch of MLB.com.
- Don't be surprised to see the White Sox draft a college pitcher with the 13th pick, writes MLB.com's Scott Merkin.
- MLB.com's Bill Ladson spoke with Rizzo, who once again said that they know who they'll select first overall. Rizzo says the player doesn't know he'll be selected, though it's tough to see them passing up consensus top pick Bryce Harper. Rizzo says the second through fifteenth rounds will determine the strength of a draft, and the Nats are "fired up" about it.
- The latest updates from Fanhouse's Frankie Piliere include the Mets' and Yankees' first-round targets, and more details on the deal the Royals are working toward with Yasmani Grandal. Industry sources tell Piliere it'll be worth "upwards of" $3MM.
- The Rangers own four of the top 50 picks in the draft, but they'll be on a budget, says Evan Grant of the Dallas Morning News.
- With the sixth pick, the Diamondbacks could be the wild card of the draft, according to ESPN.com's Keith Law (Insider-only). Their top two choices appear to be Barrett Loux and Chris Sale, who MLBTR's Mike Axisa profiled last week.
- A potential first-round pick could have already been a Phillie, writes Bob Brookover of the Philadelphia Inquirer.
- Karen Smith of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review conducts a brief Q&A with Pirates director of scouting Greg Smith.
Some more links in anticipation of Monday's draft...
- The Scott Boras camp envisions Bryce Harper as a five-tool corner outfielder not unlike Larry Walker, according to ESPN.com's Jerry Crasnick. Harper's teammates told Crasnick that they enjoy playing with the presumptive first overall pick because he's a hard worker.
- EPSN.com's Keith Law has the Pirates selecting Jameson Taillon, not Manny Machado, in his latest mock draft.
- Law hears that the Royals would love to see Machado to fall to them.
- The Royals and Reds are leaning towards college players.
- The Blue Jays and A's are eyeing Michael Choice, Christian Colon and Justin O'Conner, according to Law.
- Nats GM Mike Rizzo told MLB.com's Bill Ladson that the draft is his "Super Bowl."
The countdown is on for MLB scouting directors. The draft is just days away, so it's time for them to rank hundreds of players. Here are the latest links on the 2010 draft:
- The Rangers' ownership problems means the team will be focusing on easily-signable players, reports Richard Durrett of ESPNDallas.com.
- Steve Gilbert of MLB.com thinks the Diamondbacks will look to add pitching after spending most of their early picks in the 2009 draft on position players. He also doesn't think Arizona will pay above slot to sign a player.
- Lou Montanez, Matt Wieters and Nick Markakis tell MLB.com's Spencer Fordin what they remember about being drafted.
- Bryce Harper may have played his last amateur game and it's not just because the draft is approaching. He received a two-game suspension after being ejected, according to USA Today's Bob Nightengale (Twitter link). MLB.com's Jonathan Mayo has video of the ejection.
- ESPN.com's Jason A. Churchill hears that the Mets are high on Drew Pomeranz and Josh Sale. The Mets' decision could come down to players' asking prices, however.
- ESPN.com's Keith Law says the Mets could have a shot at Manny Machado, since the clubs picking between Pittsburgh and New York haven't shown clear interest in the high school shortstop.
- Rival scouts and executives expect the Red Sox and Blue Jays to be big spenders in the draft this year, according to Law.
- Blue Jays GM Alex Anthopoulos told MLB.com's Jordan Bastian that the Jays will not shy away from tough signs.
- An MLB executive told Law that catcher Yasmani Grandal is looking for "Buster Posey money." Posey received a $6.2MM bonus from the Giants.
- If you're wondering who your team might select, check out this mock draft by three Baseball America writers.
Assorted links about baseball's most popular 17-year-old, Bryce Harper...
- Harper tops Keith Law's updated list of the top 100 prospects in this year's draft (ESPN insider link). Manny Machado, Jameson Taillon and Drew Pomeranz aren't far behind.
- MLB.com's Jonathan Mayo explains that few hitters after Harper are considered safe bets this year.
- Harper's advisor Scott Boras told SI's Tom Verducci, "No baseball person in his right mind will have the guy catch." Baseball America's Jim Callis sees the Nationals moving Harper to a corner outfield position, allowing him to reach the Majors in September of 2012 at the earliest. Also in that piece, Callis compares Pomeranz to other recent college lefties.
- Yahoo's Tim Brown wonders what it's like to be Harper.
- Joe Posnanski cautions that unlike Stephen Strasburg, Harper is a long way from being big-league ready. A lot can go wrong in that time.
Major League Baseball's amateur draft will be held from June 7th-9th, so we're going to introduce you to some of the top players available during the next few weeks.
High school shortstops have long been a hot commodity during baseball's amateur draft, with six being taken in the first round over the last three years. That includes Tim Beckham and Mike Moustakas, the first overall pick in 2008 and the second overall pick in 2007, respectively. The top shortstop prospect in this year's class (high school or college) is Manny Machado of Brito HS in Miami.
ESPN's Keith Law ranked him as the second best prospect in the draft behind Bryce Harper, while Baseball America had him fourth (subs. req'd for both). MLB.com's Draft Report says that Machado has been "swinging the bat very well" and has a chance to hit for good power, but it's uncertain if he can remain at short as his 6-foot-3, 190 lb. frame fills out. Law notes that he "he has the tools to be a plus defender there," though acknowledges the possibly of him moving off the position. The MLB.com link has video.
Being a righthanded hitting shortstop from Miami with a big frame draws obvious comparisons to Alex Rodriguez, though it's completely unfair to put that on anyone, let alone a kid still in high school. Machado simply doesn't have A-Rod's innate hitting ability. In his latest mock draft, Baseball America's Jim Callis projects the Pirates to select Machado with the second overall pick, and it's hard to envision him getting past the Mets and the seventh overall pick.