Tuesday, June 5, 2012

SF Giants 2012 Draft

Back on Track
By: Brian Sanchez @SportsReportDU

     The Giants have strayed from stock piling talent in the starting rotation in recent yeas with the first round picks of CF Gary Brown and SS Joe Panik.  Well, the Giants are back on track now taking RHP Chris Stratton out of Mississippi St.  Many, including the Giants, did not think Stratton would be there at 20.  The 6'3" 198 lb. starter had a great season in college this last year.  He went 11-2 with a 2.38 ERA in the potent SEC with 127 K's and only 25 BB's in 110 innings.  Stratton edged out 4th overall pick Kevin Gausman for SEC pitcher of the year and was a finalist for the Golden Spikes award.  In his first game as a starter this season he struck out 17 against the LSU Tigers.  Stratton sits between 90-93 MPH on the fastball which has a good downward plane and decent late movement.  He has good skill at elevating the fastball up above the letters where it will entice hitters without leaving it down where it can be driven hard.  His best secondary pitch is a devastating slider.  It breaks more up and down than it does left to right, but it bites hard and is very deceptive.  He also has a curveball which is not as good as the slider but adds another wrinkle.  His change up is a work in progress, and with the way the Giants have been able to aid their pitchers in learning the change up it could be a good one.  He has very good accuracy and will throw any pitch at any time.  Now, you may be saying to yourself, "wow that sounds like a scouting report on a much younger Matt Cain."  Well, that's because he compares very well to a younger Matt Cain, the one who first cam to the pro's.  They are very similar pitchers, this is just a projection, but Stratton has everything it would take to pitch like a Cain, including the work horse load.  Look for Stratton to be in call-up conversations within 2-3 years.  Good pick for the Giants, and with the way they draft pitching you'd have to bank on Stratton being good and Teams looking back at this drsft wondering why did we let him past us?  

     This may be a situation where sounding like a broken record is a very good thing.  The second pitcher taken was Martin Agosta out of St. Mary's in California.  Agosta is 6'1" 180 lbs. And has done nothing but dominate and win at every level he has played at.  He won 8 games for St. Mary's with a 2.37 ERa and struck out 74 batters in 87 innings.  Agosta can throw 90-93 MPH despite his smaller frame with an ability to run a fastball up to 95 MPH.  His fastball has very good sink and tail on it making it a very good first option.  Both his curve and his changeup project to be solid MLB pitches.  As he works his way through the ranks they will probably improve given the Giants track record of grooming pitcher who were picked early.  Agosta has very good control of his pitches and while he does not have quite the upside of Stratton he does project to be a 3 or 4 starter who gives his team a chance to win every day in the MLB.  He is probably 3 years away from being considered for a MLB call up but when him and Stratton both hit Single-A San Jose at the same time it will foster healthy competition between the two not to mention dominant stat lines.

     The Giants finally took a position player and he may just turn out to be a good one.  The pick was Mac Williamson out of Wake Forest.  He is a big boy at 6'4" 240 lbs. and he has some good projectable abilities with some obvious flaws.  Williamson has tremedous raw power which will be exciting to track through the Giants system as they have a dire need for power.  Williamson also has decent speed a cannon for an arm.  He projects as a middle of the order power hitting RF which is a site for sore eyes in the Giants organization.   His big flaw is his ability to make consistent contact right now, he projects to a .240-.260 BA guy in the pros but of course that will be an area to focus on in his development.  His calling card will be his power and right now I could see him going 25-30 HR in the meat of his career which means you will live with a .250 BA given his power.  He is an intriguing prospect who will take 2-3 years to be in call up conversations as the Giants continue the quick through the system college players.

Check back later for more information on any more notable picks from this draft.  Spoiler alert: there are some more relievers that can throw Heath Hembree fast.

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