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2007 amateur draft live thread

today's regular post, a look at the cardinal offense over the last 30 days, is directly below; please head there for all non-draft-related discussion.

as for this thread, i encourage you to fill the comments section with opinions, reactions, and any information you can dig up about the cardinals' draftees --- but please remember do not post video at this site, less'n you want to risk crashing the server. if you find any pertinent video on the web, just put up a link. thanks for understanding.

a couple of add'l pre-draft links of interest, both from derrick goold: in the post-dispatch he writes about STOUT, the cards' draft-analysis tool, and at Bird Land he takes a stab at naming the 14 players on luhnow's short list of desired 1st rounders.

scroll to the bottom of this post for links to other active draft sites; game thread tonight at ~6 pm central.


#18, 1st round: PETER KOZMA, ss, Owasso hs. snippets from the scouting report: "He plays the game the right way and is very fundamentally sound." . . . "He makes all the routine plays" . . . "a hard-working kid with some tools. His fundamentals and makeup are off the charts." not very sexy pick. . . . . here's what they said at Baseball Prospectus: "Kozma has a little less risk than your average prep shortstop. What comes with that, however, is less of an upside than other prep shortstops in the draft like Justin Jackson, Will Middlebrooks, and to me, Drew Cumberland." more info sources:

  • here is derrick goold's blog entry on kozma. teaser: With a couple of the players they had their eyes on taken in the two immediate picks before theirs at No. 18, the Cardinals went with a guy they know, they know personally and they believed was not going to last much longer. . . . The Cardinals were ready to take pitcher Blake Beavan, a righthander from Irving, Texas., but the Rangers took him with the 17th selection. 'Picked our pocket,' one Cardinal scout said."
  • this is kozma's high school baseball program web site
  • good info from baseball america --- but they had kozma going in the supplemental round. . . .
  • a profile from Rise Magazine
  • story from the Tulsa World
  • jonathan mayo had kozma going at #21 to the blue jays in his final mock draft. blurb: "The thinking all along was that tHe Jays would take one college player and one high schooler with their two first rounders. It was just a matter of which two. It's still possible they could move earlier with the high school pick to get a Matt Dominguez-type first, but if it plays out like this, Kozma is the kind of high schooler the Jays would take a long look at. While he's not toolsy in terms of the wow factor, he does just about everything pretty well and unlike many high school middle infielders, should be able to stay at short long-term. He handles the bat well and has some pop at the plate to boot. His best tool might be his makeup, which might put him over the top into the first round."
  • kudos to the mock drafters at Minor League Ball: they correctly called the Kozma pick, albeit at #36 . . . . well done, fewgoodcards.
  • from SB Nation brother site Lone Star Ball: "Kozma is just a baseball player and does everything pretty well. He's performed well as a right handed hitter and looks like he can stick at SS. He doesn't have huge upside offensively, but seems like one of those guys who has a good shot at making the majors in some capacity, especially for a high school player. BA recently projected him at 21, presumably just because he's a SS and people need that, and I'd be a little disappointed if Texas took him with either of their top two picks . . . . ."
  • more links at whiteyball.
  • finally, from the Wichita State web site: "Last spring for Owasso High School, Kozma hit .553 with 53 runs, 19 doubles, three triples, 11 home runs, 11 stolen bases and 54 RBI. He was named a high school All-American in 2006 and played in the World Wood Bat Association fall championship in October. Baseball America listed him as the best defensive player at the championship and as the 12th best senior in attendance. He also played in the Area Code Games in Long Beach, Calif., this past summer and Baseball America listed him as the sixth best prospect. Baseball America also listed him as the 11th-best prospect in the 2007 high school class. Other honors include two-time all-conference, all-Metro in 2006 and conference Player of the Year in 2006."

#36, 1st round supp: CLAY MORTENSEN, rhp, Gonzaga. scouting report says he throws fastball 89-92, slider 81-84, change in the low 80s. Summary: "While there are often college seniors who make very good pros, it's rare for there to be one like Mortensen, a legitimate "prospect" on the rise in his senior season. He's got three usable pitches and a body frame that appears able to handle added strength, which could make his fastball even better. He should be a very intriguing senior sign this summer." more info:
  • his player bio at Gonzaga's home page and a piece about his being named a third-team all-american
  • an article on Mortensen's being named a Roger Clemens Award nominee
  • from Baseball America: "Looking for a fast riser? How about Gonzaga¡¯s Clayton Mortensen, who wasn¡¯t on the radar entering the year. Mortensen, who has had a 16-strikeout game this spring, has allowed only one homer all spring in 82 innings, has racked up 84 strikeouts and has pushed his Bureau ranking up from slightly below average to above average. With a sinker that has sat in the 90-94 mph range, Mortensen¨Cthe rare college senior with some projection in his 6-foot-4, 190-pound frame¨Ccould push himself into the first three rounds."
  • here's a scouting report from MVN. they like mortensen a lot . . . but these guys projected him as a 5th-rounder. quoting: "At 6¡ä4¡å, 190 pounds and sporting three good pitches (fastball, slider, change), Mortensen is more than just an ¡®easy sign college senior¡¯. Frankly, the combination of his stuff, his potential and the fact that he is going to be a cheap signee may well mean Clayton is gone by here."
  • btw, mortensen went in the 4th round in sickels' mock draft.

#71, 2d round (from Brewers, compensation for Suppan): DAVID KOPP, rhp, clemson. mlb scouting report says he has below-average command and messy mechanics, throws a decent fastball and a slider that projects to be above-average. add'l links:

  • his clemson tigers bio page
  • keith law of espn had kopp rated as the 65th-best player in the draft. rated him at #66. baseball america had him rated at #81. in sickels' mock draft, kopp went in the 3d round at #99.

#82, 2d round: JESS TODD, rhp, arkansas. strengths: above-average command and excellent makeup. on may 23 he faced the #9 team in the nation, south carolina, and struck out 17 batters, including the first 9 men he faced.

  • after the 17-strikeout game, Baseball America was duly impressed.
  • overall, BA had todd rated #110 in this draft. in sickels' mock draft, he went at #108.
  • according to this message board, todd came on strong late in the year --- registered double-digit strikeout totals in each of his last 4 starts, fanned 64 men in his last 49 innings on the year.

#112, 3d round: DANIEL DESCALSO, 3b, uc-davis.

#142, 4th round: KYLE RUSSELL, of, u of texas. had 1st-round or supplemental round talent --- big power, strikes out too much, and won't be an easy sign.

#172, 5th round: THOMAS EAGER, rhp, cal poly SLO. i hate the way this guy wears his hat.
for more draft discussion: