Thursday, December 06, 2007

Rule 5 Draft

The Nats take Matt Whitney with their first pick in the Rule 5. I dunno what they've seen, cause all I see is a 24-year old corner infielder who's slugged pretty decently in a fairly decent pitcher's league, but who's also played at Single-A for about 15 straight years.

Good power. Mediocre eye. Is "Whitney" English for "Tony Blanco?"

Recall that Rule 5 players must stick on the major league roster. To be sent down, the Nats would have to offer him back to the Indians.

  • With their second pick, they take corner OFer Garrett Guzman. His redeem grace is his left-handed bat, which gives him a decent chance of sticking.

    So-So Power. Meh batting eye. Blah speed. He's about to turn 25, and he played in a fairly tough pitcher's league, too. So maybe there's a bit of hope there.

  • Here's Baseball America's capsule on Guzman.
    Guzman missed the entire 2005 season after breaking his neck in a car accident just days before leaving for spring training that year. Now 25, the undersized lefthanded hitter profiles as arguably the best fourth outfielder candidate on the Rule 5 eligible list, drawing comparisons to Orlando Palmeiro. While Palmeiro was a bit better runner and defender, Guzman offers more power and offensive upside. Guzman, who batted .312/.359/.453 at Double-A New Britain in 2007, has solid gap power and the ability to play anywhere in the outfield, though he profiles best in left. "He probably doesn't run as well (as Palmeiro) but they're very similar players who can do a lot of things for you," said one National League scout.

  • Nationals Farm Authority, as you'd expect given the last word in the blog's name, has a quick rundown. He calls the first pick "curious," which seems about right.


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