The Astros came away with the draft's top talent, Mark Appel, with the first overall pick yesterday and added potential #3 starter Andrew Thurman with the 40th overall selection. In the third round, there's more talent on the board than any of us could've hoped. Here are some of the top names:
Jon Denney, C, Yukon HS (OK), TCB Top 100 Rank: 11 - A player that our draft team was higher on than most outlets, Denney is a top-flight offensive talent with a decent chance to stick at catcher. Though he had a rough spring on his high school squad, Denney has a gorgeous right-handed swing with bat speed that sprays line drives all over the field, and he has potential for above-average power. He's athletic and has a strong throwing arm, and if catching doesn't work out (he's a bit rough as a receiver at this point), his bat could play at third base or in the outfield. Denney was not seen as a big signability risk coming into the draft, but would likely require some overslot money in the third round.
Cord Sandberg, OF, Manatee HS (FL), TCB Top 100 Rank: 33 - The nephew of Cubs great Ryne Sandberg and a Mississippi State commit as a quarterback, Sandberg is a five-tool talent in center field with one of the prettiest left handed swings in the class. He has above-average power, and his skill set as a running quarterback shows in his range and arm in center field. Though his baseball skills are a tad raw, his upside is extremely high, and he could bolster one of the weaker positions within the Astros' organization.
Rowdy Tellez, 1B, Elk Grove HS (CA), TCB Top 100 Rank: 37 - Coming into the draft ranked by many as the #2 high school first baseman behind Dominic Smith, Tellez is a behemoth left-hander with massive raw power. His bat speed is excellent, and he projects to hit for average to go with his plus pop. Though his size will leave him confined to first base, his bat is one of the best in the class and he could fit into the Astros' plans as a potential DH alongside Jonathan Singleton in the future.
Jake Brentz, LHP, Parkway South HS (MO), TCB Top 100 Rank: 39 - A towering lefty with potential for two dominant pitches, Brentz is very raw on the mound but has limitless upside. His command and control need a lot of work and his mechanics can get sloppy at times, but he flashes stuff that isn't often available at this point in the draft and could reward the Astros handsomely if they roll the dice on him here.
Ryan Boldt, OF, Red Wing HS (MN), TCB Top 100 Rank: 48 - Once ranked in some top 15s, Boldt has a very intriguing set of tools that can play very well in today's MLB. He has plus athleticism and speed, and projects as a plus defensive center fielder down the line. His swing has some awkwardness, particularly in the lower body, but his flaws could very well be fixable, and he shows some feel for hitting. He also brings decent power to the table.
Malik Collymore, IF, Port Credit SS (ONT), TCB Top 100 Rank: 49 - A favorite of our draft team, Collymore is an elite athlete who doubles as a track star in high school. He has played shortstop, but projects to play either second or third base as a professional. What really jumps out is his bat — his hands are some of the most explosive in the class, and he has the potential to hit for big averages to go along with above-average power.
Casey Shane, RHP, Centennial HS (TX), TCB Top 100 Rank: 51 - A sinker/changeup righty with gorgeous mechanics and velocity, Shane is both a strong prospect and a local guy. He has plenty of raw talent and could fit in as a #3 to #4 starter in the big leagues.