Commentary

Draft philosophies: American League

Helping explain the possibility of Taillon to Baltimore, Cowart to Boston and more

Originally Published: June 2, 2010
By Jason A. Churchill | ESPN Insider
Getty ImagesThe Orioles took Matusz at No. 5 two years ago; it's gone well for the most part, so taking a pitcher high seems likely.

The first round of the 2010 Major League Baseball draft is quite close -- June 7, to be exact -- so we thought that we'd take a look at organizational philosophies, as we did last year. We broke it up into two URLs: The one below focuses on the American League.

These philosophies are not 100 percent exact, because this season there are six first-year scouting directors, so some things may shift. The blurbs are generally a good indicator of what organizations tend to do with regard to prep versus college, hitters versus pitchers, and more.

Essential resources as you read this: the 2010 MLB draft order, Keith Law's first mock draft , the most recent top 100 draftable prospects list, and the collection of draftee player cards. You can find all those resources in the sidebar on the right as well.

Onto the AL team philosophies:

Baltimore Orioles:
Scouting Director: Joe Jordan
This will be Jordan's sixth year of heading the draft for the Orioles. With the exception of the top of the 2006 draft (3B Billy Rowell, RHP Pedro Beato), Jordan and his staff have not made many mistakes. There has been more success with pitching, such as Zach Britton in Round 3 back in 2006 and Jake Arrieta in the fifth round a year later. Brian Matusz, No. 5 overall in 2008, cruised through the minors and has shown flashes of No. 1 potential. As for trends and philosophies, if there are any, it appears Jordan and his scouts have a feel for the arms, which is another reason we have them tabbing Jameson Taillon at No. 3 overall next week.

Boston Red Sox:
Scouting Director: Amiel Sawdaye
Sawdaye is a first-year scouting director, but we don't expect drastic changes in the way the Red Sox approach the draft and value players. The club has taken a college pitcher within the first 77 overall picks in each of the past four years, but that is probably just the way the drafts have landed. The Red Sox have gone with prep players in Round 1 twice in a row -- Casey Kelly, Reymond Fuentes -- and have a fairly balanced farm system that allows them to simply draft the best player available. The Red Sox are also known to like the two-way talent, and Georgia prep star Kaleb Cowart could be of interest to Boston in Round 1.


We gave you the first two teams for free. For the rest of the American League, you must be an ESPN Insider.