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.
Going over to another website, Jim Callis of Baseball America (and ESPN) fame, projects that the Nats will use the #10 pick to select a right handed pitcher out of Kennesaw State, Chad Jenkins. Kennesaw State is a school near Atlanta, yeah, it’s the same area from which Kenesaw Mountain Landis got his name, misspelling and all. What’s more important, though, is his ability as a player. ESPN’s Keith Law ranks him as the 48th best prospect in the draft, whereas Jim Callis puts him much higher, at #20. The disagreement comes in their assessment of his mechanics – while Law thinks it will need work, Callis says he can repeat his delivery. That’s not technically a disagreement, but anyway, they do agree that he is a bit on the pudgy side.
His fastball is his best pitch – he throws it in the low 90s but it has a hard sink to it. He also has a good slider, meaning he’s got two above average pitches. This doesn’t include his not above average changeup. He’s 6’4″, 225, which suggests to many scouts that he will be durable. And he shouldn’t be difficult to sign, which is why BA pushed him to the first round.
He’s not a glamour pick, but he does have the potential to be a #2 although more likely tops out as a #3 starter. He’ll move quickly, but maybe not as quickly as other college pitchers due to his imperfect delivery. So this might not be the pick for the Nats if they’re looking for a guy to help fill out the 2010 rotation.
Kyle Gibson – 6/1
Chad Jenkins – 6/2
*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.