Chris Jenkins has a good read on the Padres’ choices in the first round. Fuson:
“I’m certainly not afraid to take risk (on a high school player),” said Grady Fuson, the Padres’ vice president for scouting and player development. “I don’t know where people got that idea. I’ve been involved in signing Ben Grieve and Eric Chavez and Jeremy Bonderman (with the Oakland Athletics), John Danks (with the Texas Rangers), Jaff Decker (last year with the Padres). Those are all first-rounders, all of them high-schoolers.
“We’ve put together our list of the top 15 guys in this year’s draft, as we’ve ranked them, and there’s quite a few high school kids in there. But even with a kid who may be the whole package, you want to be sure of the intangibles. You want a kid who plays with passion, not a lazy kid, not a ‘hotshot.’ I’m not in this game to sign idiots.”
Daniel makes some very good points here:
The main reason I will blindly support the pick is that the Padres have better scouting and analytical information at their disposal than we do. If the Padres think Donovan Tate is better than Aaron Crow or any of the other top non-Strasburg arms, then they will probably take him. From what I have read online, I personally prefer Crow, but I realize the publicly available information is incomplete, and unlikely to be as complete as the Padres’ information. It seems silly to whine about the Padres potentially passing on “my guy,” when the information I used to determine “my guy” is not as good as the information the Padres are using to determine “their guy.”
I’m not sure if I’d quite go to that extreme, but I do believe the Padres front office has made enough intelligent moves to gain my trust, at least in general. And there is certainly no arguing with the fact that they have far more resources at their disposal than I do. It’s not even close.
Baseball Prospectus has plenty of draft coverage and they are doing their roundtable again during the draft. Looking forward to reading that; I’m pretty sure it’s free.
Baseball America is another obvious stop, though much of their stuff is behind the paywall (as is BP’s).
MLB’s draft central is a good place to see some video and scouting reports on many of the top prospects.
Beyond the Boxscore interviews John Sickels. Sickels talks a lot about college stats; here’s a snippet:
I’ve done a lot of work with college stats. They have some value, but you have to make very strong adjustments for things like park effects and level of competition. Another factor is that no two college teams play the same schedule due to the strong variations in non-conference opponents, so even comparing teams within the same conference is hard. You could throw out the non-conference numbers, but that makes the sample size even smaller. The numbers you look at are the same as you look at for pro players: for pitchers you want to see good K/IP and K/BB ratios, adjusted for context. For hitters I look very closely at BB/K/PA ratios, power production, all the standard stuff.
There’s quite a bit more. Good stuff.