After looking at this year’s draft yesterday, I thought I’d take a look at Dan O’Brien’s first draft (2004).

#1, RHP Homer Bailey, 19 Dayton 4.60 ERA/92 IP/81 H/56 BB/ 110 K The main thing Homer needs to do is throw strikes. When he does, he’s very effective. I’d expect him to take next step.

#2, CF BJ Szymanski, 22 Dayton .262/.332/.471 Numbers at Low A are very similar to numbers he put up last year at Billings (.799 OPS). Was out injured for long periods of time this year (twice). First one was a knee, last one was breaking his hand on the OF wall trying to make a catch, is out for the season. Only reason I could see why he wouldn’t start next season in Sarasota.

#3, C Craig Tatum, 22 Dayton .188/.311/.281 in only 37 games. Like many of the Dragons, injuries have been a problem this season.

#4, RHP, Rafael Gonzalez, 19 Had a 4.20 ERA at Billings last year with a 1.38 WHIP and started 8 games. Started this year in Dayton, 9.35 ERA/26 IP/24H/24BB/22K was demoted on 6/17 to Billings where he has a 3.29 ERA/38 1/3 IP/33H/21BB/35K Will probably be a Dragon next season.

#5 , SS Paul Janish, 22 Had a .752 OPS at Billings in ’04, this year in Dayton .245/.346/.385 had 5 HR when blew out his elbow and is done for the season. Has probably been passed in the organization by Adam Rosales at this point.

#6, C, Lonny Roa, 19 GCL .222/.317/.278 (2nd year in GCL)

#7, LHP, Philippe Valiquette, 18, Started the season at Dayton 6.30 ERA/64 1/3 IP/81H/44BB/42K, was sent back to Billings. Very young…probably a Dragon next year.

#8, LHP Greg Goetz, 21, Reds website said he signed with the team, but has no info on him this season. Injured? Last season at Billings he was 7.16 ERA/44 IP/51H/39BB/35K

#9, 2b, Trevor Lawhorn, 21 Dayton .270/.300/.405 Compares well with his .728 OPS at Billings last year.

#10 RHP Terrell Young, 20 GCL Has only pitched in 2 games this season and only threw 14 innings in 10 games last season.

#12 RF Cody Strait, 22 Dayton .275/.353/.433. His .886 OPS is a nice improvement on his 56 games at Dayton last year (.539 OPS). He had a 1087 OPS at Billings last season before coming to Dayton. Seems like promotion material to me. Sarasota.

#13 2b, Drew Anderson, 22 Dayton .246/.298/.371 .753 OPS at Billings last year. Wouldn’t be surprised if Anderson was back with the Dragons next year.

#14 RHP, Jared Sanders, 24 Dayton 4.39 ERA/55 1/3 IP/72H/29BB/29K 0 games started. Had a .96 WHIP at Billings last year, all in relief.

#15 3B, Jarrett Reininger 22, Billings .274/.338/.410 this season. .715 OPS at GCL last year got him to Billings this year and he’s improved to .748.

#16 CF Travis Kaats No information on him this year, but his .522 OPS at Billings last year were nothing to write home about.

#18 LHP Charles O’Neal 21 Started last year in the GCL where he threw 45 1/3 innings with a 2.58 ERA and a 1.32 WHIP, was promoted to Billings where he threw a couple of scoreless innings. This year’s stats are a little confusing. Started the season in Sarasota (A) where he had 5.87 ERA/15 1/3 IP/14H/9BB/13 K. He was taken off the Sarasota roster on 5/15, and shows up on Billings roster on 6/21 (Extended ST?) where he’s put up 6.63 ERA/19 IP/25H/14BB/14K. After a promising start last year, he’s slide back this year. Not sure what next year will hold for him.

#19 LHP Andrew Jenson 24 lists him as GCL, but has no stats. He was at Billings last year in 19G (0 starts) he had a 2.00 ERA with a 1.39 WHIP. I’d assume he’s been injured all season.

#21 SS Blake Honey 19 GCL .200/.250/.360 which is sadly an improvement on his .418 OPS from last year.

#22 3B Matt Levering 23 Played in 4 games at Billings in ’04, no numbers on him this year. Injured? Released? Who knows?

#23 OF Pedro Hawkins, 21 No info for ’05. Had a .663 OPS with GCL in ’04.

#24 RHP Adam Gillihan, 21 lists him as being GCL, but no stats. Only threw 4 1/3 last year at Billing.

#26 RHP John Dillard, 24 GCL 4.70 ERA/15 1/3 IP/19H/7BB/15K 12 games 0 starts. Pitched 22 games in relief at Billings last year with a 7.17 ERA and only a 1.64 WHIP but over a walk per inning.

#27 RF James Langham, 22 Billings .197/.282/.368 2nd year in GCL (last year .589 OPS).

#29 LHP Terry Sparks, 22 GCL 4.11 ERA/15 1/3 IP/9H/15BB/10K in 10 games (0 starts) 2nd year in GCL, last year had a 2.38 ERA with a 2.03 WHIP in 10 games.

#30 LHP David Griffin, 24 Sarasota 18.00 ERA/3IP/7H/3BB/1K I’m not convinced he was at Sarasota (A) might have been the GCL Reds, as he wasn’t that effective at Billings last year (6.48 ERA/1.92WHIP in 15 games). I would assume he’s injured.

#32 RHP Robert Wachman, 23 Last year pitched at GCL (45 IP / 5.12 ERA/1.40 WHIP) and got a quick look at Dayton (8 1/3 innings). This year at Billings (5.92ERA/38IP/48H/12BB/43K).

#34 SS Drew Phillips, 24 Had 615 OPS at Billings in ’04, but no stats listed for ’05

#36 LHP Todd Johnson 24 Had 3.56 ERA/1.19WHIP in 18 games at Billings in ’04. Has been hurt all season, had thrown only 10 2/3 innings this year, yet to be scored on as he comes back from, I believe, arm problems of some sort.

#40 RHP Brad Morenko, 24 Brad is the rising star of this draft class. After playing last year at Billings, he started the year in Dayton, where in the first half he had 2.49 ERA/61 1/3 IP/62H/9BB/34K and was named to the Midwest All Star team. He was promoted to Sarasota (A) where he was 4.98/21 1/3 IP/29H/3BB/6K before being injured and lost for the season.

#43 RHP Ben Parker, 25 Neither “The Cube” nor has any information that this guy has ever played an inning, but the Reds website say he was signed on 6/30/04?

#45 RF Brandon Roberts This is strange. The Reds website shows him signing on 6/14/04 and played last year at GCL and Billings. But the Reds also drafted a Brandon Roberts this year and there is a Brandon Roberts playing well at Billings. The Reds website has them 4 years different in ages…so, I don’t know who is who here…sorry.

#48 IF Brad Key, 22 .695 OPS at Billings in ’04, at Dayton this year has had .225/.268/.315 in limited time.

Conclusion: It’s difficult to compare one drafts after one and two years, but I would say, at this point, the ’05 draft looks more promising than the ’04 draft. Bailey still looks like a winner and Morenko’s climb is wonderful, but no one else has put up eye-popping numbers or climbed so quickly as to catch your attention.

2 Responses

  1. Billingsfan

    I judge talent strictly on sound – I look for names that sound like baseball names – Mickey Mantle, Johnny Bench, Willie Mays – masculine but personal – no Charles or James’s allowed. (On this basis , Rafeal Palmiero doesn’t cut it.) Here are the likely winners from your list: Homer Bailey; BJ Szymanski (love that “sm” sound!); COdy Strait; Travis Kaats; Blake Honey (alright – I admit, he sounds like a private investigator); and Pedro Hawkins (love the cultural mix there.) Those are your prospects.

  2. Billingsfan

    Meant “love that “szm” sound.