The MLB draft is coming up, and starts next week on Tuesday night, June 9. Besides having the #1 pick, the Nats also have the #10 pick. Washington could end up getting a player that will have a big impact on the team very soon. And with Mike Rizzo in charge (maybe), the man who was a big part of putting together a solid Arizona farm system, there is hope that they will do something good with this pick. Over the course of this week, I’ll profile several players that are potential picks for the Nats at #10.
Jim Callis at Baseball America thinks the Nats are leaning towards late first round talent with this pick, but Alex White would be, as he says “awfully tempting” if available. White is a RHP out of UNC, which means he’s at least been to the DC area before to put a hurting on Maryland. Keith Law and Callis both have him going #11 to the Rockies, so let’s assume he is available, their other picks are off the board, and Rizzo and company go for White. Meanwhile, in terms of talent level, BA ranks him at 6th and ESPN’s Law puts him at #9 overall in terms of talent.
White’s fastball is considered his best pitch, it’s in the low-to-mid 90s and have good movement. He also has a good slider and a good splitter, but his problem has been consistency. His delivery is probably to blame for this, and he may need to work on repeating the delivery, doing what’s right all the time, to keep his fastball zipping and his other pitches as potential strikeout pitches. He’s got a good makeup, in terms of smarts, ability, and drive, so that should help him succeed at the next level.
He’d be a good pick for the Nats here, because of his potential to be a top line starter. If he doesn’t improve his consistency he may never be an ace, but he’s got the stuff to be a big part of the rotation. Whether he is ready for spring of 2010 with the big boy club may depend on how quickly he picks up instruction, and how fast he translates that into consistent delivery and improved command.
*Credit is due to Jim Callis and Keith Law among others, as I am not a scout and am simply trying to summarize their opinions in a way that gives Nats fans an idea of these players without running afoul of any copyright stuff.