Tuesday, February 19, 2013

2013 Draft: Under the Radar Prospects

Come June, MLB Draft headlines will be dominated by elite players and known names taken at the top first round.  Those players will be thrust into the spotlight, expected to provide their respective teams with wins, homeruns, and all-star appearances.  Many of them will but not all-stars are drafted in the first round of a draft.  Not every valuable major leaguer was a once a big-time draft prospect.  Some guys fly under-the-radar up until they are drafted, even on the way to a productive major league career.  The four guys profiled below are draft prospects who aren't considered elite draft prospects at this time. A strong spring could propel them into that stratosphere or they could be potential diamonds in the rough for a team to take in the later rounds come June.

Ryan Tella

Measurables: 6'0, 175 lbs 
Bats: R, Throws: R 
DOB: 05/18/1991 
Position: OF 
School: Auburn (Junior)

Tella was drafted in the 12th round by the San Francisco Giants in 2012 after being drafted in the 34th round by the Minnesota Twins in 2011.  In both instances, Tella declined to go pro.  That may pay off come June when Tella could find himself in the top three rounds of the draft.  Tella doesn't have loud tools that make him stand out; but he does have a variety of baseball skills that could make him valuable.  He's got a short, compact swing that should allow him to hit for average. He's also got a good plate discipline, although he will have to polish his two-strike approach.  Tella also has good bat speed that gives him more pop than is expected considering his size.  Defensively, Tella has the ability to stick in centerfield and has an above-average arm.  Overall, he could develop into an adequate lead off option at the major league level.  

Trey Williams

Measurables: 6'1, 210 lbs 
Bats: R, Throws: R 
DOB: 03/09/1994 
Position: 3B 
School: Junior College of the Canyons (Freshman)

About this time last year, Trey Williams was considered a potential top ten pick overall in the 2012 draft as a bat-first third baseman coming out of high school.  However, winter turned into spring and summer and Williams saw his stock drop until he was drafted by the St. Louis Cardinals in the 11th round. Williams did not sign and also didn't fulfill his commitment to Pepperdine, instead choosing to go the Junior College route with an eye on the 2013 draft.  When he's on, Williams has plus power and a solid glove at third-base.  When he's not, his attitude becomes an issue as does his pitch recognition.  The overall offensive potential will most likely result in Williams being drafted higher than the 11th round this coming June.

Stephen Alemais

Measurables: 6'0, 175 lbs 
Bats: S, Throws: R 
DOB: Unknown 
Position: SS 
School: All Hallows High School (NY)

The first thing that stands out about Alemais is his glove.  There's no doubt he will be able to stick up the middle defensively long term.  He's athletic and smooth, with soft hands and plenty of arm for shortstop.  Questions about Alemais revolve around his ability to hit.  He's not particularly large and injuries have hampered him recently in his high school career, so there's little information if he'll be able to hit for enough power to make the big league level.  The level of competition in New York has not helped Alemais stand out either.  A strong spring could shoot him up draft boards, but either way some team will like the glove enough to draft him high in June and then hope the bat develops into something passable. 

Scott Moss

Measurables: 6'6, 195 lbs 
Bats: L, Throws: L 
DOB: Unknown 
Position: P 
School: Deland High School (FL)

Moss fits the mold of a projectable high school pitcher.  Not even weighin 200 pounds, Moss towers over almost everyone, standing at 6'6.  The young left-hander already has good present velocity as he can touch 90 mph with his fastball.  He also features a curveball that's the definition of inconsistent, but also flashes plus on occasion.  Moss has the size and arsenal to gain serious helium this spring if he shows more on the radar gun.  Even if that doesn't happen, his frame and present stuff will make him quite the intriguing draft prospect.  Some team will take him and hope physical maturity brings them a front-of-the-rotation starter.


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