Day One of the Draft--Hits and Misses

Posted by Dave Nichols | Wednesday, June 10, 2009 | , , , , , , | 9 comments »

1) Steven Strasburg. If I have to tell you who he is, you're not paying attention. The Nats HAD TO draft him, but I still wasn't comfortable until I heard it for myself out of old Bud's mouth. PAY THE MAN!

10) Drew Storen, RHRP, Stanford. A sophomore eligible closer from the PAC-10. I have to admit, I'm not a big fan of drafting closers, especially with the number 10 pick in the draft. Obviously, the Nats don't think it'll take Storen long to get up to the big club.

Still, there were names there at ten that more than intrigued me. And Rizzo was less than convincing when asked if Storen was the first name left on the board at that point.

50. Jason Kobernus, 2B, Cal-Berkley. Apparently the kid is athletic and has played all over the place, settling at second base this year. Has some speed, and some think he'll make a good number two hitter. Usually, second basemen are made, not drafted.

81. Trevor Holder, RHSP, Georgia. Here's the real head-scratcher. If Holder was the "best available" on the Nats board when this pick came up, then they have the wrong people putting the board together.

He was a tenth-round pick as a junior but didn't sign. This season, he was 7-4 with a 4.68 ERA and in 77 innings struck out just 71 and walked 27. Not stellar, by any means. As a junior, he struck out 68 in 98 innings. These are not the skills of a third round pick--especially out of a college senior--regardless of the conference he played in.

I'm willing to look past drafting a college closer, because he really wasn't a reach there. He was Rizzo's guy and he got him. But the second and third round pick especially scream of "signability", and I don't think the Nats lived up to their word of taking "best available".

There is still a lot of draft to go, and some real good talent still available. But if the Nats are putting all their eggs into just Strasburg's basket, well, this draft could have been so much more.


  1. Anonymous // June 10, 2009 at 8:08 AM  

    "And Rizzo was less than convincing when asked if Storen was the first name left on the board at that point."

    Really? What's so unconvincing about this?

    "Question: Where was Storen on your drafting board?

    Rizzo: He was the next guy on our board."

    Sounds pretty cut and dried to me. Do you discount this transcription of Rizzo's comments because it comes from Nats320?

  2. Dave Nichols // June 10, 2009 at 11:07 AM  

    Anon, the quote i saw (from Nats Journal) was:

    ""He was ranked very highly on our board. We got on him early at Stanford. He was crosschecked by everyone in the department, including myself. He was a guy we had a good background on. We've seen him for years since his high school days. We had him in here for a good sit down, face to face. He's a terrific kid from a terrific pitching rich program."

    it's the same quote Nats320 has except he added "He was the next guy on the board". i haven't seen that quote anywhere except for Nats320.

    i stand by my comment, regardless if the quote from teh Post was incomplete. if the full quote was indeed "He was the next guy on our board. He was ranked very highly on the board," those are two incongruous statements and it's still less than convincing.

    thank you for the ANONYMOUS comment.

  3. Anonymous // June 10, 2009 at 11:35 AM  

    It's pretty clear that talking from the podium is not one of Rizzo's strengths. To put it politely. So if you insist on parsing his comments for evil intent - which was something that of course was fair game with spinmeister Bowden and even with Kasten - then you're only going to drive yourself crazy. He made a straightforward statement of fact ("he was the next guy on our board") and then muddied it up as he struggled to find more to say. If you heard it on the air like I did, that should have been pretty clear.

    "if the full quote was indeed "He was the next guy on our board. He was ranked very highly on the board," those are two incongruous statements and it's still less than convincing."

    Those two lines are not incongruous at all. One would hope the next guy on the board is ranked very highly, wouldn't one?

  4. Dave Nichols // June 10, 2009 at 11:47 AM  

    i wasn't "parsing... for evil intent", i simply make a comment that i thought Rizzo's statement was less than convincing.

    i didn't say: "Rizzo was lying" or "Rizzo was trying to pull a fast one".

    you're entitled to take Rizzo's word at face value, i'm entitled to read between the lines. it's all good.

    the only difference is that i'm putting my name behind my opinions.

    thanks again, anonymous.

  5. Anonymous // June 10, 2009 at 3:09 PM  

    Not only your name, but your made-for-the-print-media face too. Bravo! That plus $6 will buy you a cup of coffee at the Mayorga stand in Nationals Park, assuming it's open. (Want a kosher dog, though, you're SOL.)

    If you don't want anonymous comments, don't allow anonymous comments. Seems like a simple solution to me.

  6. Dave Nichols // June 10, 2009 at 4:06 PM  

    i don't filter my comments, unlike other blogs out there.

    not sure why you feel like you have to be snippy with me, but i guess that's your option when you don't have to sign your name.

    hope i'm not giving you an ulcer just by replying to your comment.

    i sincerely do appreciate the comments though. a difference of opinion is always healthy for conversation.


  7. Anonymous // June 10, 2009 at 4:14 PM  

    You sure show your appreciation in a very snippy way, though, don't you? I don't demand your resume every time I read one of your blog posts, after all.

  8. Dave Nichols // June 10, 2009 at 4:58 PM  

    i'm sorry, i didn't think i was being snippy. i apologize if you thought my replies to your comments were. i also apoligize for categoizing yours as snippy. i have been told in the past that i can be too defensive when replying to comments.

    either way, i'm not demanding a resume (though i include a description of someone my qualifications on my front page). obviously i'd prefer commenters to identify themselves, i think it leads to a more worthwhile exchange.

    i stand behind my comments and have always been public with my blog and comments i leave elsewhere. i prefer to be forthright and not "hide behind my blog".

    i realize that it's easier to be critical when no one knows the source, but i'm personally not interested in leaving anonymous critique. you are well within your right to do so.

    also, i refuse to filter comments, and using blogspot that would be the only way i could eliminate anonymous posts.

    regardless, thanks again for the exchange today. i welcome your comments anytime. it's good to have constructive feedback.

  9. Pat // June 11, 2009 at 12:05 AM  

    Dave - I just read through the comments from Anonymous. Wow, what is their problem? They are making an issue out of nothing. Don't sweat them. You do a great job and always stand behind your comments. Please keep it up and we'll keep reading.