Diamond Diaries

Cardinal baseball, from the girls

2011 Draft Spectacular Photo Thursday

Last year Erika and I became fascinated by the draft, learning about all of the new faces that would be donning the birds on the bat and joining the ranks with our other baby birds. What we quickly realized was that many of the places we were hungrily searching for info were void of one thing that we are obviously fascinated with – pictures!

An idea was born – we don’t claim to know anything about draft boards, who has the highest ceiling, which picks are potential busts and which are sure things. We do however know how to use Google images, so we’re bringing everything to you all in one place. If you want the best places for this information, check out places like Future Redbirds, the Cardinals website, or even the Post-Dispatch. To help, we’ve even included links to Future Redbirds’ posts on the top 10 picks for the Cardinals in this year’s draft to go along with our own (obviously) top-notch analysis of our newest players to watch.

Enjoy!

1st round, 22nd pick: Kolten Wong

What we’ve heard: Wow, the snap judgments on this year’s first round second baseman have ranged from, “Why did we draft the second coming of Fernando Vina?” to “Oh good, another scrappy infielder. We don’t have enough of those.” The key point that many cooler heads have tried to point out is that he can hit. The 20 year old also made an MVP-winning showing in the Cape Cod league last year, which shows he can also play with a wooden bat, which is sometimes a tough adjustment for a young player to make.

Our take: Interviews with him made the kid seem like an ecstatic little boy who just couldn’t wait to get on a uniform and get out there to show people what he can do. It seems like it won’t be a problem signing him, which sounds great to me!

2nd round, 79th pick: Charlie Tilson

What we’ve heard: The high school senior projects as a left-handed major league capable centerfielder. He’s fast, has a smooth swing, and might or might not have decent power (well which is it?). Now, Tilson has signed a letter of intent with the University of Illinois, but he also wants to be a ballplayer (preferably with the White Sox).

Our take: Just don’t let the fact that the Sox didn’t draft you deter you Charlie! We don’t like the Cubs either!

3rd round, 109th pick: C. J. McElroy

What we’ve heard: High school centerfielder whose power is still coming but supposedly plays outstanding defense. Baseball is in his blood. His father is Chuck McElroy, who pitched in the bigs for 13 years. His grandpa Sylvester played in the Negro Leagues, and Cecil Cooper (17 years in the majors) is his uncle.

Our take: Another high school centerfielder? Well okay. C. J. is committed to the University of Houston to play both football and baseball, but considering his lineage, here’s hoping baseball is his first choice.

4th round, 140th pick: Kenny Peoples-Walls

What we’ve heard: A third high school player, although this one of the shortstop variety. He’s a speedster contact hitter that has an average build, but the frame of one who could probably wind up at second base.

Our take: Seems like this one needs time in the minors just to get sorted out what his role is and fill out the rest of the way in his development.

5th round, 170th pick: Sam Gaviglio

What we’ve heard: Sam is not about to make us squeal with delight at his speed (even for a starting pitcher), as he averages 86-89 MPH and tops out at 90. He is a groundball machine, who was drafted out of high school by the Rays but chose to head to Oregon State to pick up a bit more refinement.

Our take: Consider this pick Dave Duncan approved! Also, I got a smile where he was stated as having ‘moxie.’ A little moxie never hurt anyone!

6th round, 200th pick: Adam Ehrlich

What we’ve heard: A left-handed catcher just out of high school, Ehrlich’s value will definitely come in his defensive ability, in which he is almost called a finished product. His abilities with the bat are leaving something to be desired, but he’s got time to figure that out.

Our take: Left handed catchers are a commodity. Catchers that are referred to as graceful intrigue me for sure!

7th round, 230th pick: Nick Martini

What we’ve heard: A polished hitter that just seems to find ways to get hits, Nick is a left-handed line drive machine from K-State. His arm is average, and while his only real tool is his on-base abilities, his eye at that plate is described as very advanced.

Our take: For whatever reason, this is the first one that has truly intrigued me, if for no other reason than because I like guys that have patience at the dish. Even if he only winds up a 4th outfielder, what would you do with a 4th outfielder with the ability to take a solid at-bat in a critical situation late in the game? Exactly.

8th round, 260th pick: Danny Miranda

What we’ve heard: Very little positive to report here. If I understand what I read correctly, Danny was kind of ousted as the University of Miami this year, and really projects to be a LOOGY, nothing more, nothing less. He has a nice 3 pitch mix that make it to the upper 80′s.

Our take: This just underwhelms me all the way around.

9th round, 290th pick: Tyler Mills

What we’ve heard: Tyler is an outfielder turned pitcher, who has seen more success at Michigan as a reliever instead of a starter. This is the first time in the draft where the words ‘draft-eligible sophomore’ come into play, and history shows that it is much tougher to pull off this kind of signing than any other. The Cardinals signed him for his potential.

Our take: If he can get back to the days where he could do 84-87 mph sliders and 94-96 mph fastballs, sign me up!

Jeffries got a tour of the stadium after signing Thursday afternoon. Photo via @CardsInsider

10th round, 320th pick: Lance Jeffries

What we’ve heard: He’s a speedy centerfielder from the St. Louis area (the very definition of home-grown talent) and loves tearing it up on the basepaths. He seems very excited to be playing for his hometown team, and some speculate that he’s got a cannon of an arm to go with his speed.

Our take: He seems to be like a raw tools type that you just draft and cross your fingers hope the kid turns into something. I like the sound of it though, and hope he comes through for the Cardinals in a big way, especially since he already signed! Welcome to the Cardinals Lance! :)

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