2006 Ranking: N/A
Cardinal: Selected in the fourth round of the June, 2006 First-Year Player
Draft. Received a $100,000 signing bonus. 2006 G W-L IP H BB K ERA WHIP
Jason Scott (31): Many Cardinal fans got an early glimpse of Degerman's unorthodox, over-the-top delivery when he was pitching for Rice in the College World Series prior to signing. Drafted as a fifth-year senior, he is 23-years-old, but it probably won't take him long to advance through the system. Scouts don't like his delivery, but he has used it's deceptiveness to compensate for stuff that is said to be just "fairly average". His fastball does, however, sit in the low-90s, and he also throws a changeup and curveball. I see him starting the season at Palm Beach.
Leonda Markee (NR): Degerman was my twenty-sixth best pitching prospect this season. He barely did not make my Top 40, along with Gary Daley (Birdhouse's #35 pick) and another pitcher that will be revealed shortly. I ranked Daley above Degerman because he pitched at a higher level and is over two years younger than Degerman. By my calculation Degerman had the 12th-best DIPS numbers out of ninety-five pitchers I ranked in the Cardinals' minors for 2006, although using this stat to project future success below the AA level is questionable at best. He is in a group of pitchers that were just outside my Top 40 but for whom a good argument could be made for inclusion. I liked some others just a bit better.
Ray Mileur (28): Degerman went 2-1, 2.76 in nine starts for State College in the New York-Penn League, with a 53/20 K/BB in 42 innings. Degerman did well in his debut, the only flaw being his higher-than-ideal walk ratio. He held opposing batters to just a .227 batting average and his K/IP and H/IP marks were strong, and he gave up just one homer. He is expected do well in A-ball in '07, probably starting the season with the Swing of Quad Cities.
His best pitch is his curveball, but he keeps his fastball low in the strike zone, changes speeds well with excellent deception and velocity. Degerman has experienced success at every level he has played at and he should tear up the lower levels and move up to Double-A Springfield sometime in 2008.
Brian Walton (27): Despite being older than some of the newly-signed prospects here at 23 years of age, Degerman is a very polished pitcher, with a great out pitch - a huge curveball - plus a decent fastball. The fifth-year senior, drafted in the fourth round out of Rice University, was a Roger Clemens Award finalist and excelled against elite college competition.
Like Mark Worrell, Degerman's odd delivery, or deceiving mechanics for the positive thinkers, often gets all the attention. There is substance there too, as Degerman impressively whiffed 52 in 43-1/3 innings while posting a 2.76 ERA at State College following a long college season.
Granted, Degerman was at a level where he was expected to do well, but he is positioned to move up quickly. Degerman could begin 2007 at Palm Beach and progress to Springfield if he continues on this trajectory.
STAFF COMMENTS KEY: Staff Member (Individual Ranking), NR = Not Rated
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