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Trea Turner Rumors
FRIDAY, 5:40pm: The Padres have announced the signings of Turner, Gettys, and Lemond.
4:50pm: Turner tweets that he has officially signed with the Padres.
He will receive a $2.9MM bonus that lands about $177K above the allocation for the 13th overall pick, tweets John Manuel of Baseball America. That is an unusual result for a collegiate player, Manuel notes.
1:40pm: Callis now reports that Lemond has agreed to a $600K bonus that will save the Padres about $31K (Twitter link). Turner is the only of their top three picks to remain unsigned at this point.
WEDNESDAY, 9:07pm: The Padres have reached an agreement with Gettys for $1.3MM, reports MLB.com’s Jim Callis (on Twitter). That’s about $217K over slot, and since Turner and Lemond don’t figure to come in on under-slot deals, it will likely have to be made up further down the draft board.
8:16pm: The Padres are nearing deals with each of their top three picks — NC State shortstop Trea Turner, high school outfielder Michael Gettys and Rice right-hander Zech Lemond — a source tells Dennis Lin of the San Diego Union-Tribune (Twitter link). The assigned pick values for the Nos. 13, 51 and 86 picks are $2.723MM, $1.083MM and $632K, respectively.
Baseball America ranked Turner ninth among draft prospects, while MLB.com ranked him 14th and ESPN’s Keith Law ranked him 18th. Turner is said by some scouts to possess 80 speed on the 20-80 scouting scale, and most feel that he has the instincts, range and a strong enough arm to handle shortstop. There are questions about his bat, as he could be a strong leadoff hitter if things break right or a bottom-of-the-order type if he doesn’t improve certain elements of his offensive approach.
Gettys (37th per MLB.com, 40th per BA and 45th per Law) is regarded as a true center field prospect with 70-grade speed and raw power but questions surrounding his hit tool. Lemond (36th per Law, 58th per MLB.com and 78th per BA) battled elbow inflammation this season and has spent time as both a closer and a starter in his college career. As Law writes, he could be a mid-rotation starter with improved consistency of his curve and changeup, but if not he should be able to carve out a career as a high-leverage reliever.
The Padres entered the 2014 draft with $6,098,600 to spend on their picks, per BA, and giving slot deals to each of their top three picks would use up about 73 percent of that budget.
In his latest notes column, Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports quotes one rival executive that said Cardinals GM John Mozeliak “realizes he has more talent than anyone else — and he’s reluctant to get rid of it.” (That reluctance is illustrated by Mozeliak’s comments to Derrick Goold of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, as the GM told him that external changes aren’t much of a consideration at this time.) Rosenthal looks at some of the recent improvements in the Cardinals’ offense and echoes Goold’s initial report that patience seems the likely route for St. Louis at this point.
More trade-, draft- and prospect-related highlights from a lengthy piece that also looks at slow starts in the AL East and a surprising start from the Twins…
- The Yankees have better pitching depth than many realize, Rosenthal opines, noting that Adam Warren could be moved into the rotation when Shawn Kelley is healthy again. He also points to a quartet of hard-throwing relievers at Triple-A — Diego Moreno, Jose Ramirez, Danny Burawa and Branden Pinder. A trade is still something the Yanks will likely explore, but despite the aforementioned depth, the team likely doesn’t have the firepower to land someone like Cliff Lee, in Rosenthal’s eyes. They have little more to offer than relief help and high-end catching talent and could be competing with at least two other AL East teams in the Orioles and Blue Jays.
- David Phelps wasn’t the Yankees‘ priority when scouting director Damon Oppenheimer went to see Notre Dame play prior to the 2008 draft. Oppenheimer was scouting Phelps’ teammate Kyle Weiland, but Phelps impressed him with his competitiveness, prompting Oppenheimer to push for him in the 14th round, which looks to be a nice bargain pickup six years later.
- The Phillies are having internal discussions about moving Cody Asche to the outfield in 2015 in order to clear room on the 25-man roster for top prospect Maikel Franco at third base. Though Rosenthal doesn’t mention this, that does raise the question of what will become of Domonic Brown, the team’s left fielder who is once again struggling after what looked to be a breakout 2013 season.
- Rosenthal hears that NC State shortstop Trea Turner is drawing interest from teams in the No. 6-10 range of the upcoming draft. The fleet-footed shortstop also has pop in his bat (he’s second in the ACC in homers), but some scouts wonder if he can stick at shortstop. Rosenthal points out that both the Mariners (No. 6) and the Mets (No. 10) have needs at shortstop heading into a draft that is light on college shortstops.
- Analysts from the Pirates and Marlins made the same comment to Rosenthal in the past week: the most useful data regarding defensive shifts comes from where hitters put the ball in play against a team’s own pitchers. The Marlins aren’t particularly focused where batters hit the ball against soft-tossers, due to the flamethrowing nature of their rotation. Likewise, the Pirates’ shifts are based largely on batted ball data against Francisco Liriano, Gerrit Cole and Charlie Morton.