Inside the Draft
Back to the draft drawing board.
Marti Wolever and his staff closed shop after midnight last night following Day 1 of the draft. They were back in the war room at 9 this morning getting ready for Day 2 which begins at noon, rounds 4-30. Remaining 20 rounds will take place tomorrow, starting at 11:20 a.m.
A total of 111 names were selected yesterday, meaning that many magnetic name plates were removed from the Phillies four main boards, college pitchers/players and the same for high school athletes.
Of the top 16 names that were posted on the Phillies boards, all college pitchers are gone. For college position players, one name was there this a.m. High school pitchers, five remained and high school position players, three.
Led by Marti, discussions continued this morning on the names that are next in line on the boards. Calls were made last night and this morning to area scouts for fresh updates.
Long time Phillies athletic trainer, Jeff Cooper, is part of the war room to provide input if there is a medical issue.
“Good luck with the draft! Jamie Moyer.”
That had-written note was left on the Phillies table at the MLB Network studio where the first day’s draft was held last evening. Jamie was in the studio the day before.
Moyer was drafted as the 135th overall player (sixth round) in 1984 by the Cubs, whose GM then was Dallas Green. Dallas and I occupied the Phillies table last night. Dallas got to announce our first selection, outfielder Kelly Dugan, the 75th overall selection (second round).
Each club had two representatives. Among the 60 reps were Hall of Famers Billy Williams, Al Kaline, Bill Mazeroski and Tommy Lasorda.
With the signing of free agent Raul Ibanez, our first round selection and a compensation pick went to the Mariners. Not having a first round selection took some of the interest and excitement out of the draft.
As Seattle was getting close to their selection, Scott Palmer sent a text message, “Howard, Ibanez home runs.” Where would we be without Raul? He’s certainly worth a first-round pick.
The impressive studio includes an artificial surface mini infield. The Phillies table was just to the first base side of the mound. The Pirates table was to our left.
The distance from the mound to home plate was much shorter than the normal 60-feet, 6-inches. When asked if Dallas could still pitch at the shorter distance, he laughed, “With my knees, I can’t get up the mound anymore.”
The commentators (MLB Network announcers for the first/compensation rounds; MLB.com for the remaining selections) were on a stage over our left shoulder. We heard everything that was said. But, no monitors to for us to see what was on the air.
MLB Network commentator, Harold Reynolds, who is very good, said before San Diego had the second selection, “The Padres are the most boring offensive team I’ve seen.” Thought it was awkward especially since the Padres table was about five feet away, directly behind Reynolds.
As has been reported, our first two selections were very athletic high school outfielders with excellent makeup. Physical tools are important but so is the mental attitude. No need to look any further for examples than our big league clubhouse.