My life has been a whirlwind lately so it's kind of hitting me square in the face that the draft is about five weeks away. I know some of you have been paying way more attention to all of the chatter leading up to this point than I have, and that makes me sad. I want to dive in so much, but I have about another week of craziness before my life slows down for a short period.
However, there are times that I can sit back and read a good link that good buddy, CRPerry, sends out a link like this interview with Astros Scouting Director, Mike Elias.
Silly draft nerds, he doesn't give away who they're going to draft.
I did find a few quotes very interesting, however. The first had to do with the strengths of this class. High school pitching is one that obviously stands out. You have two at the top of the class vying with Carlos Rodon for the 1-1 pick in Brady Aiken and Tyler Kolek. But, the list doesn't end there in attractive high school arms. This class is littered with them. They aren't on Kolek's and Aiken's level, but there are tons of intriguing prep arms that will be available in every round. For example, Cameron Varga is a tall and projectable RHP who throws 93-95, but will likely be drafted in the second round.
Elias also listed college power bats as a strength in this class, which comes as a little bit of surprise. You look at the top of the draft and you see a huge void in collegiate hitters. They are toward the back end of the top 15. True, the top of the draft lacks college bats. But as you creep down into the middle of the first round and on, power bats become apparent. Guys like Michael Conforto, Alex Blandino, Mike Papi, or Casey Gillaspie.
No, Tim. I didn't forget Grayson Greiner.
The other thing I took notice was his emphasis on a player's makeup. A good makeup can cover some pretty strong flaws. I like how Elias goes on to talk about a good makeup is different for each player. It's work ethic, it's being relaxed in certain situations. Yes, it involves #want, but makeup is more than just #want. Does Mark Appel being calm and collected on the mound mean he doesn't have good makeup? No, it means he has great makeup. He doesn't get flustered. It means he stays within himself and doesn't throw his nastiest pitch just to try and say "I'm better than you." No, he throws a pitch he thinks will get an out. That's good makeup.