2008 Rule 4 Draft

Quick Update(Rob G.): Scout.com has a live blog going for the draft and they'll be answering user questions. The writer running it is hearing that the Cubs will not pass on Casey Kelly if he's available. Also, Parachat is (always) open if you want to chat amongst yourselves.


The MLB Rule 4 Draft (AKA “First-Year Player Draft”) starts at 2 PM ET today, with the 1st round and Supplemental 1st round to be televised "live" on ESPN2. The draft will continue tomorrow (Friday). Last year, the first five rounds of the draft were completed by the end of the first day, and the remaining 45 rounds were completed by the end of the second day.

With the selections to be made by Scouting Director Tim Wilken, the Cubs will have the 19th pick in the first round, one selection in the Supplemental 1st Round (the 41st pick overall, compensation for losing FA catcher Jason Kendall to MIL), one selection in the 2nd round (65th overall), one selection in the 3rd round (97th overall), one selection in the 4th round (131st overall), and then every 30 picks (#161, #191, #221, #251, etc) after that until the 50 rounds (maximum) are completed. Clubs have until August 15th to sign their draft picks. Players who are not selected in the draft can sign with any club as a Non-Drafted Free-Agent (NDFA).

The name most-often mentioned as the Cubs 1st round target is RHP-SS Casey Kelly (Sarasota HS - Sarasota , FL), the son of one-time Yankees 2B Pat Kelly.

The younger Kelly has signed an NLI to play quarterback at the University of Tennessee, so signing him could be a problem. However, if a team fails to sign a 1st (or 2nd) round pick in a given year, it gets a replacement pick one slot lower in the 1st round (or 2nd) round of the following year's draft, so all would not be lost if (for example) Kelly is selected but does not sign. (Not signing a 3rd round pick nets a club a compensation pick between the 3rd and 4th rounds in the following year's draft).

Also, Canadian Junior National Team slugging 3B Brett Lawrie and Las Vegas Durango HS SS Niko Vasquez worked-out at Fitch Park in Mesa last weekend (Vasquez even played in Saturday's EXST game, and he hit a HR!), so don't be surprised if the Cubs select Lawrie in the 1st round (if available) and Vasquez (if available) either with their Supplemental 1st round selection, or in the 2nd round.

In addition, TCU RHP Andrew Cashner (a college closer with an upper 90's fastball) is rated a potential 1st round pick, and he has a Cubs connection, too. Cashner was selected by the Cubs in the 29th round of last year's draft out of Angelina JC, but he didn't get the money he wanted, so he transferred to TCU for his junior year and proceeded to light it up.

The Cubs do have a history of drafting players they like two years in a row, most-recently Stanford OF Sam Fuld (24th round in 2003 and 10th round in 2004) and Clemson 3B Marquez Smith (35th round in 2006 and 8th round in 2007).

Last year, the Cubs signed 33 of their 50 Rule 4 selections, including their first 18 picks, 23 of their first 24, and 28 of their first 32. Of the 33 who signed, six have subsequently been released, and one retired. .

Only eight of the Cubs 2007 Rule 4 Draft selections were high school players, and the Cubs signed only two of the eight (3B Josh Vitters and RHP Ryan Acosta).

Here are last year's Cubs Rule 4 selections, and where they are now:

NOTE: Players who signed with Cubs in bold

* bats or throws left
# bats both

2007 RULE 4 DRAFT
1. Josh Vitters, 3B (Cypress HS – Cypress, CA) - at Fitch Park (EXST)
2. Josh Donaldson, C (Auburn) - at Peoria
3. Tony Thomas, 2B (Florida State) - at Daytona
4. Darwin Barney, SS (Oregon State) - at Daytona
5. Brandon Guyer, OF (Virginia) - at Peoria
6. * Casey Lambert, P (Virginia) - at Daytona
7. Ty Wright, OF (Oklahoma State) - at Daytona
8. Marquez Smith, 3B (Clemson) - at Peoria
9. * Clark Hardman, OF (Cal State- Fullerton) - at Fitch Park (DL)
10. * Leon Johnson, OF (BYU) - at Peoria
11. * Chris Siegfried, P (U. of Portland) - at Peoria
12. Ryan Acosta, P (Clearwater Central Catholic HS - Clearwater, FL) - at Fitch Park (EXST)
13. * Jonathan Wyatt, OF (Georgia) - at Daytona
14. * James Russell, P (Texas) - at Tennessee
15. * Marc Sawyer, 1B (Yale) - RETIRED
16. * Zach Ashwood, P (Kansas) - at Peoria
17. * Arik Hempy, P (South Carolina) - at Fitch Park (EXST)
18. * Jeffrey Rea, 2B (Mississippi State) - at Fitch Park (DL)
19. * Kyle Day, C (Michigan State) - DID NOT SIGN
20. Jose Made, SS (Dominican College) - at Fitch Park (EXST)
21. * Dustin Sasser, P (East Carolina) - at Peoria
22. Craig Muschko, P (LaSalle) - at Peoria
23. Stephen Vento, P (Palm Beach CC) - at Peoria
24. Scott Meyer, P (Lamar) - RELEASED
25. Victor Sanchez, 3B (Gahr HS – Norwalk, CA) - DID NOT SIGN (enrolled at University of San Diego)
26. * Michael Bunton, P (College of Charleston) - at Fitch Park (EXST)
27. Clayton Suss, P (Cooper City HS - Cooper City, FL) - DID NOT SIGN (enrolled at Miami-Dade CC)
28. Bill Moss, 2B (U. of Memphis) - RELEASED
29. Andrew Cashner, P (Angelina JC) - DID NOT SIGN (transferred to TCU)
30. * Luke Sommer, OF (U. of San Francisco) - at Fitch Park (EXST)
31. * Brian Leclerc, OF (Florida) - RELEASED
32. Luis Bautista, C (Florida International) - at PEORIA
33. Preston Clark, C (Texas) - DID NOT SIGN
34. Enrique Garcia, P (U. of Miami) - DID NOT SIGN
35. J. C. Casey, P (Kickapoo HS – Kickapoo, MO) - DID NOT SIGN (enrolled at Missouri State)
36. * Billy Mottram, 3B (Dowling College) - RELEASED
37. Mike McGee, 3B/P (Port St. Lucie HS – Port St. Lucie, FL) - DID NOT SIGN (enrolled at Florida State)
38. Yuri Higgins, P (South Florida) - RELEASED
39. Roberto Sabates, C (CUBAN DEFECTOR - Miami, FL) - at Fitch Park (EXST)
40. Corey Bachman, P (VMI) - RELEASED
41. Jordan Herr, OF (Pitt) - DID NOT SIGN
42. Colt Sedbrook, 2B (Arizona) - DID NOT SIGN
43. Garrett Clyde, P (San Jacinto JC – North) - DID NOT SIGN (transferred to U. of Texas)
44. * Bryan Jost, 1B (Minnesota) - at Fitch Park (EXST)
45. Ryan Lewis, OF (Yakima Valley CC) - DID NOT SIGN (transferred to Westen Oregon)
46. Tyler Clark, P (Springfield Catholic HS – Springfield, MO) - DID NOT SIGN (enrolled at U. of Missouri)
47. Josh Walter, P (Texas State) - DID NOT SIGN
48. Carlos Rivera, OF (East Aurora HS - East Aurora, IL) - DID NOT SIGN (enrolled at Waubonsee CC)
49. Jordan Rogers, P (San Jacinto JC - North) - DID NOT SIGN (transferred to Rice)
50. Blake Murphy, C (Western Carolina) - DID NOT SIGN

NDFA:
Patrick Brooks, INF (UT - Pan American) - RELEASED
Michael Christl, P (Bradley) - RELEASED
* Matt Hudgins, C (Virginia Wesleyan) - RELEASED
Chris Rivera, P (Virginia Wesleyan) - RELEASED
Derek Schermerhorn, 1B (Wichita State) - RELEASED

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Comments

BTW, for thos interested, Kyle Day, the unsigned 19th pick remained at Michigan State where he just completed his junior season. He had another good season at the plate, hitting .320, .448, .543. In 175 at-bats he led the team in runs (41), RBI (48), total bases (95), homeruns (9), walks (39), as well as slugging and on base percentage. He was 6-8 in steals to boot. We will probably see him taken higher this year by someone.

AZ Phil,

Who did the Cubs "lose" that got them a supplemental sandwich pick? I can not remember any of our free agents last year being a Type B free agent.

Submitted by Chifan on Thu, 06/05/2008 - 8:58am.

AZ Phil,

Who did the Cubs "lose" that got them a supplemental sandwich pick? I can not remember any of our free agents last year being a Type B free agent.

============================

CHIFAN: Jason Kendall

Thanks for the info. It takes a little of the sting away from losing Jerry Blevans.

Great write up Dr. Phil. In your opinion of the guys drafted and not signed last year. Who helped themselves by not signing? Who wishes they had a mulligan? I'll hang up and listen.

After watching the Padres series I am thankful the human garbage that is Barret is gone. It was like Lou Pinella was saying "That, that was our catcher? Watch as I run my players at will against him." That's what it was like being a Cubs fan watching him catch games as other teams ran on us for years.

In last nights game Len saild only two NL starting catchers did not have homeruns-

Barrett
Kendall

Thank you, Jebus for Soto.

Is that a mix of Jobu and Jesus? And did we have to sacrafice a live chicken to get Soto?

Come on - at least be honest.

Barrett only has 11 games and 40 at-bats this year, as he was hurt.

True, but he also hasn't homered since the trade - which is over 170 AB's.

Sure... but that is a different conversation.

To imply that someone it is meaningful that Barrett has not homered this year is just silly.

And FWIW... the announcers didn't talk about starting catchers not homering. They talked about the teams' catchers not homering. Neither Milwaukee or San Diego have ANY home runs from ANY of their catchers.

Submitted by Dr. aaron b on Thu, 06/05/2008 - 9:16am.

Great write up Dr. Phil.

In your opinion of the guys drafted and not signed last year. Who helped themselves by not signing? Who wishes they had a mulligan? I'll hang up and listen.

============================

DR AARON B: The only two 2007 Cubs draft picks who really "got away" were Angelina JC RHP Andrew Cashner (who transferred to TCU) and Norwalk, CA (Gahr HS) and Team USA Junior National Team 3B Victor Sanchez (who enrolled at the U. of San Diego).

The 6'6 Cashner wanted "1st round money" to sign last year (which is why he fell to the 29th round) and he did (in fact) turn out to be probably the #1 closer prospect in the 2008 draft (96-98 MPH fastball and 84-85 MPH slider), and Sanchez fell to the 25th round because he also wanted "1st round money" (he was rated maybe a 3rd-4th round "talent" coming out of HS), and now he is a likely Freshman All-American at USD and is everything the Cubs hoped Josh Vitters would be, except Sanchez can actually play 3B.

Unfortunately for the Cubs, the Draft & Follow (DNF) rule was eliminated beginning with this year's draft, meaning the Cubs did not retain the rights to Cashner up to one week before the 2008 draft as they would have in years past. In any other year previous, they could have given Cashner 1st round money as a DNF (like the Diamondbacks did with Max Scherzer a year ago) and still retained their #1 pick. 

The Cubs should have given Sanchez the 1st round money they gave to Vitters, let Vitters go to Arizona State, and then the Cubs would have ended up with Sanchez AND they would have picked up the #5 overall pick in this year's draft as compensation for not signing Vitters. (BTW, because he enrolled in a four-year college, Sanchez will not be eligible for the Rule 4 Draft again until June 2010).

As for who should have signed when they had the chance, I would say University of Texas (and Team USA) catcher Preston Clark, who fell into the 30's for "signability" reasons a year ago and now has less value than ever (he should have followed the lead of buddy James Russell and signed with the Cubs when he had the chance), San Jacinto JC RHP Jordan Rogers (now at Rice), Kickapoo HS RHP J. C. Casey (who struggled at Missouri State), OF Jordan Herr (Pitt), and 2B Colt Sedbrook (Arizona).

AZ Phil,

Last year at this time the debate here was should they have drafted Jarrod Parker over Vitters. Given the added benefit of what they have done as pros so far do you think Hendry made a mistake? Parker in 39.2 IP in Low-A South Bend has 34/10 K/BB ratio with 39 hits and 2 HR with a 2.73 ERA. Or was the right move not signing anyone with the 4th pick and taking the 5th pick this year and signing a guy like Cashner or Sanchez?

I think the debate was Wieter vs Vitters...Parker was a longshot at the #3 spot, although the Cubs did have interest.

Submitted by Chifan on Thu, 06/05/2008 - 10:42am.

AZ Phil,

Last year at this time the debate here was should they have drafted Jarrod Parker over Vitters. Given the added benefit of what they have done as pros so far do you think Hendry made a mistake?

Parker in 39.2 IP in Low-A South Bend has 34/10 K/BB ratio with 39 hits and 2 HR with a 2.73 ERA.

Or was the right move not signing anyone with the 4th pick and taking the 5th pick this year and signing a guy like Cashner or Sanchez?

=============================

CHIFAN: I thought at the time that the Cubs should have let Vitters "slip away" (remember, he didn't sign until the very last minute) and instead give the money to Sanchez, and then take the #5 overall pick in the 2008 draft as compensation for "losing" Vitters.

Of course, MLB probably would have conducted some kind of investigation if the Cubs had done that, but so what?

Actually,.I'd probably do that every year.

You've got to sign the 1st round compensation pick because you can't get another one the next year for not signing that pick, but then I'd always let my "regular" 1st round pick from the draft "get away," and instead give the money to a player (or players) picked in a later round who slip for "signability" reasons.

I'd do that with my 2nd round pick every year, too.

 

1st round Parachat?

I advertise it just for you Carlos and you ditch me...that's cool.

 

from the live blog...

Not sure on 39 but this is a well timed question. I projected this in my mock but I've just heard that Cubs would probably not pass Casey Kelly if he's available.

as I think the NCAA has a rule where someone can play pro in one sport and be an ameueter in another.

AZ Phil:

What do you think of James Russell? He's barely 22 and already pitching well at AA -- he's looking more and more like the steal and/or the best pitching talent drafted last year. If you ask me, he looks like a young Jon Lieber; solid control numbers, middle-of-the-road strikeout numbers and some problems with his homeruns allowed.

However, is his ceiling a good #3 like Lieber? Or is he more of the middle-reliever with awesome control kind?

Thanks in advance.

any chance he jumps straight to MLB? Given that Boros is his agent, he is going to get an MLB deal anyways so they might as well try him out in the bigs. I can not see him being any worse than the Baustia/Ball stealer platoon they have now.

AZ Phil,

Why the heck are you not getting paid by the Cubs for your analysis? I think we need to draft a letter to Sam Zell.

Great stuff.

by 2 feet. Anyone else with MLBTV mosaic having issues trying to get the STL/WAS game? I was hoping to watch the draft, that game and the PHI/CIN game, but the Cards game has a streaming error.

I'm here, Rob.

Wellemeyer tosses 6 shutout innings to lower his ERA under 3.00.

He posted a 3.11 with the Cards last year.

Clearly, they taught him something. Always suspicious when a mediocre pitcher suddenly "finds" his stuff after several years in the majors.

He always had Good arm/stuff. His command was his undoing. Yet another example of Dave Duncan spinning straw into gold. Cubs need to get Leo Mazzone and maybe we can stop spending 9 million dollars for #5 starters.

Take Andrew Cashner at #19. Guess Hendry was trying not to lose him after taking him in last year's draft. Anyone know if they're expecting him to come up and help right away?

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