The draft so far has been an interesting one. One of the top projected prospects was Jason Groome and he fell out of the top 10 because of concerns with makeup. Matt Thaiss jumped up. Blake Rutherford dropped out of top 10. Delvin Perez dropped into the 20's because of a positive PED test. It was just full of movement that was a bit more than usual.
But, the day started with mock drafts pointing almost exclusively to Cody Sedlock. There was one to Dakota Hudson as well. But, they always discussed that the Astros were in on a few prep arms, more specifically, Forrest Whitley.
Fast forward to the seventeenth pick, and Forrest Whitley was available. And....they got him!
That is probably the highest upside pick they could have made. Great upside with power fastball and two breaking balls that project to be average or better ML pitches. He also has a changeup that will probably develop into a solid pitch with more use.
The Astros didn't have much to do for awhile after that since they didn't pick until #61.
Leading up to that pick, there was some excitement among our staff as Bryan Reynolds was still available. He'd been one of the best hitters for Vanderbilt the last few years and was projected as a first rounder. However, he was selected just a few picks too early by the Giants.
The Astros instead selected Ronnie Dawson who looks the part of a great athlete. He plays center field for The Ohio State University. He struggled in the Cape Cod League with some issue with contact. Yet, he posted his best season this year and led the Buckeyes to a B1G Conference Championship.
This pick was an opposite reaction by most. Whitley with upside that most are happy with. Dawson was a bit of an overdraft at first glance. MLB.com had him as the #121 prospect for the draft. However, there is some raw talent here. He can draw walks and has above average power. He's built like a solid workhorse running back and played that in high school. He can run. However, his speed isn't great in game due to routes in center are suspect and isn't the fastest out of the box. He also has questions with his swing. Yet, there's bat speed.
The raw tools are there to be better than he's shown and the Astros may be able to tap into that.
Day one appears to be about upside. When you select further back in the draft, you have to take some risk in order to get higher end talent. And when you have the depth that the Astros have accrued in the minors, that risk can be absorbed much more easily. They're going with raw talent so far. It'll be interesting to see what they do on day two.