Rangers, Giants took advantage with boatload of picks

The Rangers and Giants were the big winners on the first day of the draft, stockpiling a number of promising players.

Originally Published: June 8, 2006
By Keith Law | Scouts Inc.
With five rounds in the books, let's run through the first-day highlights and the best guys left on the board for Day 2, which got an early start on Friday:

Best drafts, Day 1

1. Texas
As you might expect, the two teams that pulled in the best hauls were two of the teams with the most picks -- but having extra picks doesn't mean you'll take the best players. The board played into Texas' hands a bit; the Rangers were primed to take some power arms, and ended up with two of the best, Blake Beavan at No. 17 and the somewhat underrated Michael Main at No. 24, a guy I thought could go in the top dozen picks but who slipped because of a poor performance in the state tournament in Florida. They got good value in Julio Borbon at No. 35, since several teams were on him in the first round and he's likely to perform well in the low minors. Tommy Hunter at No. 54 gives them a quick-to-the-majors power set-up guy if they choose to leave him in the pen (which I think is his best role -- he has has a reliever's body and a reliever's repertoire). And they took a nice gamble on John Gast, who needs Tommy John surgery but would otherwise have been a top-100 player, in the fifth round.

2. San Francisco
The Giants also had a draft-pick bonanza, and like Texas, started off with two power arms in the raw but highly coveted Madison Bumgarner at No. 10, followed by one of the more eccentric arms in the draft in Tim Alderson, a guy with an odd delivery who only pitches out of the stretch but whose stuff is electric. They got a potential steal at No. 29 in Wendell Fairley, a top-10/top-15 talent who slipped for nonbaseball reasons, and then got a strong up-the-middle bat in Nick Noonan, a shortstop (probably headed for second base) whom I prefer to first-rounders Kevin Ahrens and Peter Kozma.


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