- Keith Law, ESPN Insider
The top ten as I see it right now: 1. Strasburg, 2. Ackley, 3. Tate, 4. Sanchez, 5. Crow, 6. Matzek, 7. Zack Wheeler, 8. Scheppers, 9. Turner, 10. Jenkins. The Rockies could take Alex White or Tim Wheeler at 11.
I said this the other day, but I don't think Mike Minor is very likely at 3; the thinking behind the Padres taking Minor is that Grady Fuson likes high-probability college players who move quickly and justify their selections in short order, but Minor's not the top choice of the other decision-makers there. Taking Minor with the three pick with so many high-ceiling players on the board would be a mistake.
•Yesterday's hot rumor had Ackley asking for more than Pedro Alvarez received last year, but it didn't check out, and he doesn't seem to have indicated to clubs what his price tag is.
•Kyle Gibson's draft status is in question after he sat 83-87 last weekend with what he told me was "forearm muscle tightness" from throwing so much this season. He indicated that neither his shoulder nor elbow is an issue for him, but several teams have told me they've either backed off him entirely or are waiting to see medical reports.
•The Rockies are "heavy heavy" on Norco CA RHP Matt Hobgood for one of their two first-round picks, more likely 32 than 11, since they're expected to take a college player at 11, such as Tim Wheeler or Alex White.
•The Angels are considering Albuquerque Academy slugger Max Walla with one of their sandwich picks.
•The Rays, Royals and Phillies are all heavy on Rocky Mountain outfielder Jake Stewart, either in the second or third rounds.
•St. Mary's outfielder Kyle Jensen was the big star at San Francisco's predraft workout on Wednesday. Tim Wheeler also played very well, but is no longer under serious consideration for the No. 6 overall pick.
•Chad Jenkins and Drew Storen both threw at Washington's workout, with the reliever Storen throwing particularly well. Several teams are looking at Storen as a candidate to return to the rotation, including Seattle.
•One scouting director I spoke to on Wednesday said the best word to describe this year's draft class is "bizarre," and said to expect a number of teams to make picks that seem to ignore the consensus board.
•A national guy who was one of the early riders on the James Paxton bandwagon told me he's off after seeing him three times - "good, bad, and ugly" - this spring. He expects his team to pass on Paxton in the first round due to the inconsistent stuff and lack of track record prior to this year.
•In my last first-round projection, I didn't have an appropriate home for Tanner Scheppers -- lots of teams were interested on some level, but none indicated that he was a first choice, and one scouting director told me that taking Scheppers was "our doctor's call," based on the doctor's opinion of Scheppers' medical records. I've since learned that the Reds, Tigers and Rangers continue to show heavy presences at his outings for St. Paul.
Keith Law checks in with the latest MLB Draft 2009 information, with the actual Draft four days away.