Round 2. RHP Devin Williams (Hazelwood West HS, MO)
The Brewers didn’t have a first-round selection, but they opted for a high-upside arm to kick off their ’13 Draft. Williams is a prep arm who saw his velocity increase earlier than expected and already sits in the low-90s. He has also reportedly touched mid-90s already, according to Keith Law at ESPN — who ranked him as the 20th-best prospect available. Most scouting reports suggest his offspeed pitches are currently below-average, but his curveball/slider apparently flashes plus. It fluctuates between a slurve and a tighter slider. His command is certainly a work in progress, as well.
Much like right-hander Jorge Lopez a couple years ago, Williams will move slowly through the Brewers’ system and is very much a boom-or-bust prospect. He has the athleticism and tools that scouts drool over, but he has a long way to go before developing those tools into useable skills on the mound. Williams is currently committed to the University of Missouri.
Round 2s. SS/3B Tucker Neuhaus (Wharton HS, FL)
Ranked #83 by Baseball America, this is another upside pick for the Brewers. Tucker Neuhaus missed some time on the field this spring, but he has an intriguing swing from the left side. He has shown some pull-power from the left side and a simple stroke, according to Baseball America. Most scouting reports believe he will eventually move to third base — though a few online scouting reports suggest he could stick at shortstop for a while. At 6-foot-3 and roughly 200 pounds, the Brewers are getting yet another athlete who could have enough bat to profile well-enough to move to third base.
He is currently committed to Louisville, and I’ve seen one or two comments from draft experts that he’s not a slam-dunk sign. However, the Brewers must have a good read on Neuhaus to select him with one of their two day-one selections because the organization doesn’t roll the dice too much on bonus demands.
Round 3. RHP Barrett Astin (University of Arkansas)
After selecting a prep arm and a prep bat with the first two selections of the ’13 Draft, Milwaukee opted to go the collegiate route and picked the right-hander out of Arkansas. He bounced between the rotation and bullpen with the Razorbacks, but he could develop the repertoire to start if his offspeed offerings become a bit more consistent. His fastball sits in the low-90s with some sink. He doesn’t have the prototypical huge body the Brewers tend to covet, but at 6-foot-1 and 200 pounds, he should be durable enough to handle a starter workload, if needed.
Baseball America rated Astin has having the best changeup in the SEC coming into the 2013 season, so it appears there is something to work with in terms of secondary offerings. His breaking ball can also have good depth, at times, but he’ll need to develop more consistency across the board to have a true chance at the starting rotation down the road.
Round 4. RHP Taylor Williams (Kent State University)
At only 5-foot-11, many have already decided that Williams is nothing more than a reliever as a professional, but the Brewers must believe his short stature won’t hinder his development as a starter. He throws a low-90s fastball with a very good slider and a fringy changeup — so he has the repertoire to perhaps stick in the rotation if everything comes together in the minors. Baseball America rated him as the #146 player available in the MLB Draft.
This season for Kent State, Williams compiled a stellar 2.47 ERA with 110 strikeouts in 105.2 innings. His command is solid, but overall, he appears to be yet another short pitcher who will try to buck the old adage that pitchers under six feet automatically move to the bullpen.
Round 5. RHP Joshua Uhen (University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee)
Some may think the Brewers only drafted Uhen for his local roots, but the big right-hander can really pop the glove with his fastball. He reportedly hit as high as 98 mph this year and sits around 94 mph. Baseball America rated him as the #305 available player in the Draft. He underwent Tommy John surgery in 2011 and has come back extremely strong, but still needs to develop his offspeed pitches and command. His slider and changeup are below-average. As Jim Callis said on the MLB.com streamcast, though, Uhen could be a guy who needs to get into professional baseball and get the consistent work to develop the offerings.
The Brewers have consistently taken college guys with huge fastballs and non-existent breaking stuff in recent years. Two years ago, it was David Goforth, and last year, it was Damien Magnifico. Seems to be a growing trend for the organization in the mid-second-day rounds.
Round 6. 1B Garrett Cooper (Auburn University)
Although he’s not highly-rated on draft boards, Cooper was a consistent performer at the collegiate level. Last year for Auburn, he was named second-team All SEC and hit .354/.481/.540 with 12 doubles, one triple and seven home runs. He possesses a solid approach at the plate — more walks than strikeouts — and also reportedly possesses above-average defensive skills at first base. At 6-foot-6, though, the Brewers hope his power eventually develops a bit more to match some of the other skills, as he’ll need to hit for more power to stick at first base as he moves up the organizational ladder. According to Baseball America, though, the raw power is there.
Round 7. CF Omar Garcia (Miami Dade CC South, FL)
Garcia is a speedy, leadoff-type guy who was Miami Dade’s best hitter this past season. His slash line was .447/.513/.538 with six doubles and three triples, and he also stole 32 bases. He’s someone who has a pretty good arm in center field and can cause some trouble on the basepaths. The power is non-existent — as he hit zero home runs last year with a metal bat — but getting anyone with a plus-tool (in this case, speed) at this juncture in the draft is all you can expect from the collegiate ranks.
Round 8. CF Brandon Diaz (American Heritage HS, FL)
Coming from an elite high-school program, Diaz is known for his plus-speed. He should have no trouble sticking in center field defensively and can reach top speed on the basepaths extremely quickly, but the bat needs to improve. If the Brewers can convince Diaz to sign and not honor his commitment to FIU, they’ll be gaining a true athlete in center field. They’ll need to hope the bat improves once reaching pro ball, though. He was not ranked among Baseball America‘s Top 500 Draft prospects, despite being drafted #242 overall by Milwaukee.
Round 9. LHP Tyler Linehan (Fresno State University)
The Brewers moved back into the Baseball America Top 500 Draft Prospects with Linehan, who had a disappointing year for Fresno State — posting a 5.90 ERA in 50.1 innings. He’s a big guy, standing only six-feet but weighing anywhere between 220 pounds and 240 pounds (depending on the source). He’s intriguing because he was supposed to be a stud for Fresno this past year, throwing in the low-90s and featuring a tight curveball and a cutter, but he really struggled. This BA article from March 14 quoted a scout saying:
“[Fresno has] one kid, Linehan, who was supposed to be good for them, and he’s been awful, at best. He’s just all over the place—I mean, 20 command.”
Still, in the ninth round, getting a guy who has the potential to have two major-league offerings like Linehan is a very solid value pick. The Brewers hope they can iron out his mechanics and get his command back on track, as he is only one season removed from a 3.83 ERA in his sophomore year.
Round 10. OF Michael Ratterree (Rice University)
Another good value pick for the Brewers. Ratterree was the 373rd-ranked player coming into the draft by Baseball America, and he was once a highly-touted player in Conference USA. In fact, Baseball America predicted he would be the Player of the Year in the conference in 2012 and was considered the fifth-best prospect in the league — even above Aaron Blair, who was drafted #36 this year.
He hit .271/.394/.448 in 2013 with nine home runs and more walks (43) than strikeouts (36) — so he has some power. He’s a former second baseman who was moved to the outfield after some defensive issues. Though many teams simply fill out rounds nine and ten with vanilla college seniors, the Brewers appear to have gotten solid value in Ratterree.
Round 11. RHP Andy Hillis (Lee University, TN)
Interesting pick for Milwaukee and interesting that a college senior would fall so far in the draft. Baseball America ranks him as the #181 draft prospect. Hillis has reportedly touched 99 mph this spring and consistently sits in the mid-90s, working primarily out of the bullpen. His secondary pitches need plenty of work, but the Brewers could have an impact reliever if his slider develops in the pro ranks. It flashes plus, but needs consistency. While the organization doesn’t generally stick guys like Hillis in the bullpen right away, he could move quickly through the system as a relief arm.
Round 12. LHP Trevor Seidenberger (TCU)
The Brewers continue to stick in the college ranks, drafting left-hander Seidenberger. He is known for his deceptive delivery and his solid three-pitch mix. His fastball is nothing exciting at 88-91 mph — and was only mid-to-high 80s in 2012 — but it plays up due to the deception in his pitching motion. He also throws a good curveball and changeup. Again, to stay consistent, Baseball America ranked him as the #413 prospect available in the draft.
Round 13. C Tanner Norton (Bishop Brossart HS, KY)
Though Norton isn’t ranked in the top 500 draft-eligible players by Baseball America, he does make the cut for Perfect Game. He’s ranked as the eighth-best player in Kentucky and reportedly has a solid approach at the plate. He’s currently committed to Western Kentucky, so it will be interesting to see if the Brewers can woo Norton away from his college pledge.
Round 14. LHP Hobbs Johnson (University of North Carolina)
Pitchers for big-time collegiate programs often pepper the middle rounds, and left-hander Hobbs Johnson played for one of the best in the University of North Carolina. He sits in the upper-80s with his fastball and is thought to be a future reliever. His best pitch, according to the MLB scouting report, is his changeup. Standing only 5-foot-11, though, he will need to work down in the zone to avoid being too hittable with a below-average fastball.
Round 15. 1B David Denson (South Hills HS, CA)
Denson is a big, big man with massive power. Standing at 6-foot-4, he reportedly hit a 515-foot home run over the winter in a Power Showcase at Marlins Park, but he’s committed to the University of Hawaii and could be a difficult sign. Baseball America ranked him as the #285 player available in the draft and notes he has some major holes in his swing. It will be interesting to see if the Brewers can get him into their system because that kind of power (even if it’s raw) at first base is always desirable.
Round 16. RHP Corey Miller (Pepperdine University)
Though not highly rated among draft experts, Miller had a very successful season for Pepperdine. He posted a 2.71 ERA in 89.2 innings (13 starts) and held opposing hitters to a .243 batting average. Baseball America ranked him as the 212th-best prospect in the state of California this year.
Round 17. RHP Brandon Moore (University of Arkansas)
The Brewers go back to the University of Arkansas to draft reliever Brandon Moore, who was most likely seen when the organization sent scouts to watch third-round Barrett Astin. Moore compiled a 2.68 ERA in 25 relief appearances this year, striking out only 30 batters in 47 innings. He doesn’t have overpowering stuff, reportedly sitting around 90 mph with his fastball. Pitching in the SEC, though, he should find success in the lower minor-league levels.
Round 18. LHP Clint Terry (Lee University, TN)
In last year’s draft, Terry was drafted in the 36th round by the San Francisco Giants, but went unsigned and transferred to powerhouse Lee University. He doesn’t have overpowering stuff — though he does have pretty good command and throws a lot of strikes. He compiled a stellar 1.51 ERA in 15 starts this year, striking out 71 batters in only 83.2 innings.
Round 19. RHP Josh Matheson (Minnesota State – Mankato)
At 6-foot-3, Matheson has a good build for a right-handed reliever. He appeared in 11 games this season for Minnesota State – Mankato, primarily out of the bullpen, and posted a 2.55 ERA with 21 strikeouts in 17.2 innings. He has a relatively young arm, since he’s from the north. Guys like that can really take a step forward once consistently playing year-round baseball.
Round 20. LHP Ryan Yarbrough (Old Dominion, VA)
Yarbrough had a 3.27 ERA in 17 appearances this year for Old Dominion. He doesn’t feature tremendous stuff on the mound, but he has some deception in his delivery and doesn’t walk many. His fastball sits in the mid-to-upper 80s, and he has a pair of offspeed pitches with some polish.
Round 21. RHP Tristan Archer (Tennessee Tech)
Yet another collegiate pitcher for the Brewers, Tristan Archer enjoyed a very successful season for Tennessee Tech. He gained some muscle this offseason and has since seen his fastball touch 94 mph this season — though he generally sits 88-92 mph, according to his collegiate coach. He also throws a slider, curveball and changeup. For Tennessee Tech, he posted a 3.34 ERA and struck out a batter per inning.
Round 22. OF Jonathan Davis (West Los Angeles College)
Only a freshman in community college, Davis shows pretty good bat control and a lot of speed on the basepaths. He stole 22 bases this past season. He was not included in the top 500 draft prospects by either Baseball America or Perfect Game.
Round 23. CF Eric Williams (Sachse HS, TX)
According to ESPN, Williams has above-average bat speed and a plus-arm in the outfield. He can utilize the entire field and has very quick wrists. He could develop pretty good power down the road. The Brewers may have some trouble signing Williams, though, as he’s a Texas Tech commit and may command a higher bonus than the organization is willing to go. If all else fails, too, the young man could step onto the mound. His fastball has reportedly reached 87-90 mph as a senior in high school.
Round 24. RHP Chris Razo (Illinois State University)
Razo was a stud for Illinois State this year. He throws four pitches — fastball, cutter, curveball, changeup — and has solid command of all his pitches. He likes to work off his fastball and cutter early in counts and put batters away with his offspeed pitches. On the season, Razo compiled a 1.71 ERA in 89.1 innings for the Redbirds.
Round 25. RHP Drew Ghelfi (University of Minnesota)
The right-hander worked out of the bullpen for the Golden Gophers this year, posting a 3.27 ERA in just 11 innings. He features a fastball that hovers around 90 mph and also struggles with his command at times. He’s a LaCrosse, WI native and began his collegiate career at Iowa Central Community College before transferring to the University of Minnesota this year.
Round 26. OF Kyren Gilmore Parrott (Herndon HS, VA)
Known as “Ky,” the Virginia native is a prototypical leadoff hitter at 5-foot-9, 175 pounds with good speed who can handle center field. He is described as a “natural hitter” by his high school coach, and he’s currently committed to James Madison University in Virginia.
Round 27. LHP Tyler Alexander (Florida International University)
The southpaw may not have kept runs off the board for FIU this season, he impressed scouts with his stuff and ability to miss bats. He struck out 101 batters in 90.1 innings this season. He features a three-quarters arm slot and can reportedly touch the low-90s with his fastball. He also throws a changeup, which is considered his best pitch, and a curveball that can get a little slurvy at times.
Round 28. RHP Alex Moore (Lee University, TN)
The Brewers must have scouted Lee University really well this spring. Moore worked out of the bullpen this season for Lee, striking out 20 batters in 21.1 innings. A couple articles online refer to him as having a “big arm,” but I wasn’t able to find any velocities on the right-hander.
Round 29. RHP Nick Eicholtz (Cambridge Christian HS, FL)
Milwaukee always grabs a couple high school players with solid commitments in the later rounds, and Eicholtz fits that bill nicely. He’s a projectable right-hander at 6-foot-3, 185 pounds. His commitment to the University of Alabama, though, is considered pretty firm. His MLB.com scouting profile says he already has a curveball that’s flashing plus — which is always a good sign for such a young pitcher.
Round 30. SS Luis Aviles (Southwest Miami HS, FL)
Prep shortstops who have the ability to perhaps stick at the position are valuable commodities in the draft. Aviles has good range and a solid arm at short, and scouts believe he possesses the potential to remain at shortstop as a professional. He doesn’t have much power at the plate. His line-drive swing, however, could generate some power as he gains muscle and weight over the next few years. Baseball America ranked him as the 299th-ranked player in the draft.
Round 31. RHP Tanner Poppe (University of Kansas)
Poppe posted a 4.22 ERA in 53.1 innings this year, bouncing between the rotation and the bullpen. He’s a fastball-slider pitcher who reportedly can hit 97 mph on the radar gun, but he more frequently sits 91-94. Scouts have said he doesn’t miss as many bats as you would expect. This is solid value for the Brewers, though, as he’s a senior and shouldn’t have much leverage in negotiations.
Round 32. RHP Ryan Deeter (UCLA)
A draft-eligible sophomore, it’s tough to imagine Deeter signing with this draft position, but the Brewers may have a little bonus pool room to play with. Baseball America rated him the 452nd-best prospect available in the draft this year. He sits 90-92 mph with the fastball, but can reportedly touch 95 mph. He also has a slider that could be a league-average pitch at the major-league level. He struggles with his command, as he walked more than he struck out this spring.
Round 33. SS Charles Leblanc (George Vanier SS, Canada)
It’s amazing the Brewers didn’t draft a Canadian until Round 33. Leblanc only recently turned 17, so he has tons of projection remaining. He’s also extremely raw. It will be interesting to see if the Brewers can sign Leblanc this summer, as they’ve had very good success signing Canadian high schoolers in recent years.
Round 34. RHP Dylan Brock (Glendale CC, AZ)
Brock played the infield and pitched out of the bullpen for Glendale Community College this season, though the Brewers apparently like him on the mound. He appeared in seven games, posting a 3.12 ERA with 11 strikeouts in 8.2 innings.
Round 35. RHP William Travis (Southwest Mississippi JC)
The Brewers like tall pitchers, and Travis is massive at 6-foot-7. He was only throwing 87-89 mph with the fastball last season. It will be interesting to see if his velocity has jumped this spring because one would imagine a guy with his frame could find a bit more velocity.
Round 36. 1B Jesse Weiss (Kenyon College, OH)
Weiss hit .311 with 16 doubles, a triple and four home runs for Kenyon College this past season, and he was largely considered the best hitter on the team.
Round 37. SS JaVon Shelby (Tates Creek Sr HS, KY)
The son of former big-leaguer John Shelby, JaVon is prep shortstop with excellent bloodlines. He’s mostly known for his speed, but he hit .379 with a .475 on-base percentage and 20 stolen bases this season. He’s currently committed to the University of Kentucky.
Round 38. OF Charlie Markson (University of Notre Dame)
Markson struggled this season for Notre Dame, hitting .209/.283/.246. He was co-captain of the squad, though, so he should provide some strong leadership at the lower levels for many of the younger players. That may not sound exciting, but having character-guys like Markson in the minor-league system is important.
Round 39. C John Cleary (University of Maryland)
Minor league teams can never have enough catchers, and the Brewers didn’t draft many this year. He hit .213/.336/.311 for the University of Maryland this season. If he signs, he’ll likely be assigned to one of the rookie league affiliates and help bring along younger pitchers.
Round 40. OF Kenneth Meimerstorf (Bishop Gorman HS, NV)
An Arizona commit, the Brewers likely don’t have a high chance of signing the prep outfielder, but he’s an interesting prospect in the outfield. He has a good, accurate arm in the outfield and showed some bat speed at the plate, according to Perfect Game. At only 5-foot-11, though, he likely won’t ever hit for much power.