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Draft prospect names to know, part 3

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First off, if you're joining in late, here's a summary of draft related stuff so far:

Draft prospect names to know, part 1
Draft prospect names to know, part 2

Organizational reset

Quick Draft Review, Part One: 1997-2001
Quick Draft Review, Part Two: 2002-2006

Some draft backdrop

On to college pitchers...

One of the most unusual things about this draft, especially considering that it is considered a good one, is that, especially among college guys, lefties are more prevalent than usual and righties are in short supply. The top two lefties are maybe the surest players in the draft to not reach the Rangers. David Price has three plus pitches including a nasty slider and is the clear favorite to go number one at this point. Ross Detwiler is a power guy too, though he features a curve instead. With two lefties down, let's look at the remaining top southpaws first:

Daniel Moskos, LHP, Clemson

Moskos doesn't really have any weaknesses, as he has a full repertoire with a couple of plus pitches mixed in and decent polish. He relieved as a freshman and sophomore, only logging 16.2 innings his first year, so he should have a pretty fresh arm. He's around six-feet tall and a little stocky, which, while more forgivable to scouts than the short righty, does take away from how much they think his pitches can improve. At any rate he's most likely a top ten pick and not a likely part of the Texas picture.

Brett Cecil, LHP, Maryland

Like Savery, despite a first round grade from BA, Cecil has been slipping out of the top round in recent mocks. He seems like a typical solid but unspectacular college lefty prospect, with the standard four pitch recipe including a 90+ fastball, but the twist is that he spent almost his entire college career as a reliever. He was hit a little hard for my taste, though he has improved consistently in college. He's not sexy, but he could be a nice value in the supplemental round.

Nick Schmidt, LHP, Arkansas

Talk about not sexy, Schmidt is a competitive, big, experienced college pitcher with stuff that doesn't get you too jazzed. At 6-5, 230, he certainly looks the part, and it's not like he's a complete finesse guy. He has three solid pitches and a fastball that hovers around 90. From a statistical standpoint the most obvious concern is that he's walked a few too many batters. He's coming off a big performance in front of lots of scouts, so he could see the first round, and Mayo actually projects him at ten. He should probably be more of a very late first to supplemental pick.

Joe Savery, LHP, Rice

Savery is one of the riskiest players in the draft. BA ranked him 21st overall, but he didn't see the first round of Jim Callis' most recent projection, nor did he in Jonathan Mayo's today. At times Savery has been considered a high first round prospect, but two words are connected to him that you never want to hear connected with a pitcher: "labrum" and "frayed". He hasn't had major shoulder surgery or anything but has spent the last year recovering from a procedure to halt the problem. His performance hasn't really been there this season, nor has his stuff. BA does say that the velocity is coming back of late, as he is finally back into the 90's and on the rise. If he gets all the way back, he's likely to be a great pick. Of course there's always the big downside. Savery also has the (mostly meaningless if he's to become a Ranger) distinction of being a two-way player, and his numbers have actually improved in that area, although college baseball fans have watched his heroics since his freshman year. Like LaPorta I'll be curious to see if the Rangers have interest in the college star, maybe at 24 or even at 35.

Aaron Poreda, LHP, San Francisco

Poreda is really big, 6-6, 240, and is more the raw, strong armed type, hitting the mid-90's a good deal this year as he's really come out of nowhere (his stated goal for this year was to "be a starting pitcher" for USF, though he did start for most of the previous season). He doesn't have much of anything for secondary stuff, nor does he have a real good idea of where his fastball is going. In this guy you're getting the arm in a developed body, but there is a lot of work to do. BA ranked him in the supplemental territory, but he gets mentioned a lot in the first round. You'd obviously feel better if the Rangers could get him with, say, the 35th pick.

Cole St. Clair, LHP, Rice

St. Clair is someone I'm very interested in. He's got the prototypical pitcher's body, 6-5, 225, a big arm and a quality second pitch, his curve. Unlike most Rice pitchers he hasn't been overused because he's been a reliever for most of his career and wasn't able to pitch much this season because of a weightlifting injury. But he's performed and performed in big spots, both with Team USA and in the CWS (even spot starting against Miami and coming up big). His velocity is coming back, and his numbers, though limited, look great again. You'd like to make him a starter, and he'll need a change for that, but even if that doesn't come, you have a pretty nasty, fresh lefty arm. BA ranks him in the 50's, and I have to say, I'd be very happy to see him tabbed with one of the supplemental picks.

Andrew Brackman, RHP, NC State

Brackman is the third pitcher and first righty who has almost no shot at reaching the Rangers, but he's one of really only two college righties who carries a clear first round grade. If you're not familiar with Brackman, he's one of the most intriguing guys in the draft, as he combines a 6-10 frame with a fastball that sits in the mid-90s and gets right up to 100 and promising secondary stuff. But he's raw for a major college pitcher and the results don't match the talent. Again, he'll probably entice someone picking in the top ten and most likely won't be a factor at 17.[editor's note, by zywica]Quick update on Brackman, no sooner did this go on the site than word of Brackman's slide started getting around. The thought today is that he may not even go in the first round, which could leave only one first round worthy college righty.

Casey Weathers, RHP, Vanderbilt

Weathers does figure in the Rangers range in the first round and is likely to go somewhere around their first two picks. He's an intriguing guy in his own right. He is a senior, so that figures to help in signing him, but he has only pitched for two years, after one of those fluke stories about how he just kind of realized that he could throw in the upper-90's by goofing around on the mound. It always amazes me how no one seems to notice the arms on these guys when they're younger, but whatever. He's probably a straight reliever and looks like a closer in the making, as he's been lights out since he's been at Vanderbilt and has a nasty fastball/slider combo. Though you just assume that he can't be that polished, most scouting reports suggest that he could move very fast.

Chris Carpenter, RHP, Kent St

This guy is interesting too, as he's a draft eligible sophomore because of a comeback from Tommy John surgery during his freshman year in '05. He throws hard, BA has him at 93-97, and has a potential three pitch arsenal. But he's pitched very little, so you're taking a risk both on experience and health. He's got good size at 6-4 and figures more in the supplemental territory. He has finished strong, so he could always surprise by going higher.

Jake Arrieta, RHP, TCU

Arrieta has been regarded as a top prospect for this draft but has been one of its sliders of late, as his performance this spring has slipped, as has his stuff. He's got the ideal big, strong pitcher's body at 6-4, 220, a shot at a three pitch repertoire, and when he's right his fastball touches the mid-90's. Whoever takes him will be gambling that they can turn him around, and if they can, there's a big payoff. Complicating matters further is Boras. You could really see him going just about anywhere as a result.

Last but not least, we'll look at all of those HS arms who will litter the top of the 2007 draft next Thursday.