The Padres love left-handers and love taking them early. They are always wary of leaving a southpaw on the board when they draft. He has an average fastball that sits in the low-90s but has a plus changeup.
"This might be the best day of my life," said Schmidt. "This is a lifelong dream and I am so happy to be chosen by the Padres."
...and we were clearly wrong on Main and Savery. There is a reason we are not scouts, me thinks.
"We feel fortunate to get Nick in the first round," said Fuson. "We collectively saw quite a few of his starts down the stretch and we think he will be a great addition to the left-handers already in our system. He's a strong, durable pitcher with three or four different pitches and he is already a proven winner."
My expectation is they go with some upside with their next pick, similar to what they did last year when they selected Kyler Burke.
Did I mention I really stink at trying to predict the MLB Draft? Simmons is also off the board and we are not out of the first round. At least I aimed high since three players are off the board that I had going a tad later.
Pick 40: Kellen Kulbacki, OF, James Madison
Hey - we got one right! Sort of! We will take anything we can get. Kulbacki is the prototype of the "moneyball" philosophy. He hits for power and has an advanced approach at the plate.
Pick 46: Drew Cumberland, SS, Pace HS (Fla.)
The Padres wanted to increase their depth up the middle, particularly at shortstop where the system is weak. Cumberland provides the first step in accomplishing the task.
He is one of the fastest players in the draft, adding much needed speed to a system that sorely lacks it.
"My game is definitely built around speed," Cumberland said minutes after being selected.
Pick 57: Mitch Canham, C, Oregon State
A solid hitting catcher that bats left-handed, the Padres filled another organizational need with this selection. He is a player that will have to develop behind the plate with his receiving skills and ability to call a game, but there is little question on his bat.
Pick 63: Cory Luebke, LHP, Ohio State
Another lefty goes to San Diego. I admit - I know little about this kid.
Pick 64: Danny Payne, CF, Georgia Tech
I am off to PETCO Park but will be back with more updates and the interviews are also coming in now. I have spoken with a few - not enough time in one day!
Payne is an interesting choice. He does not have top-end speed and is more of a power hitter than a traditional centerfielder.
Pick 81: Eric Sogard, 2B, Arizona State
This pick screams out as a Fuson pick. Sogard is the type of player that will get dirty and play above his tools. He may not be a superstar in any area but will never be outworked.
Pick 87: Bradley Chalk, CF, Clemson
A contact hitter that is more conducive to doubles than raw power, Chalk rarely strikes out and can steal a few bags.
On a side note, Brian Giles just took batting practice and launched quite a few out of the park.
Pick 117: Tommy Toledo, RHP, Alonso HS (Fla.)
A tall righty that has a lot of room to add weight to his frame. This pick says a lot about the confidence the Padres have in Arizona Rookie League pitching coach Dave Rajsich and his ability to get the most out of young talent. Toledo must first add some weight to his frame and his mechanics leave a lot to be desired - it is conceivable that he could gain a few ticks on a fastball that already reaches 93 MPH.
Pick 134: Corey Kluber, RHP, Stetson
No cologne here. Kluber is around the strike zone and has a good assortment of pitches that led him to a team-leading 12 wins in 2007. He hits the low-90s with his fastball and works down in the zone. He might be a sleeper among the names you may not know.
Pick 147: Lance Zawadzki, SS, Lee
The Padres went high school with the first shortstop but you knew they would not wait long to take the second. He has a very strong arm that was clocked at 87 MPH in high school with great instincts.
Pick 177: Jeremy Hafner, RHP, Oral Roberts