Mattison's Cardinals Shadow Drafts

Since 2006, Dustin Mattison has been selecting his shadow draft picks during each year's MLB First-Year Player draft. In part one of a two part series, he reviews those selections.

For several years, I have been doing a shadow draft for the St. Louis Cardinals. The idea is not my own; I actually thought about doing it after reading about John Sickels and his Minnesota Twins shadow draft. Unlike Mr. Sickels, I only draft the first 10 rounds and not 20 or more like he does at his Minor League Ball website.

So since 2006, I have drafted a player at the same time the Cardinals used their pick. Like the Cardinals, I try to let bonus demands factor into my decision but I do believe in spending more in the draft than the real life club. Like Mr. Sickels' project, players that do not sign are not included in my shadow farm system.

Like the Cardinals, I have had some hits and misses. Also, I have agreed with some of the Cardinals' picks through the years including two during the 2009 draft. My very first pick, Adrian Cardenas, now in the Oakland A's organization, did not turn into the impact player I thought he could be. But even so, I feel he would rank highly in this team's minor league system today.

While reading my picks, don't get the idea that I feel I know more about the draft than Jeff Luhnow and his staff. I don't. I have always found this a fun way to prepare for each year's draft.

Of the 45 picks I have made that signed, seven have made the big leagues. They include Brian Bocock, Jeff Manship, Justin Masterson, Chris Perez, Rick Porcello, Marc Rzepczynski, and Jess Todd.

During this time, the team spent $18,227,500 while I spent $26,329,000 or about 30% more than the real Cardinals. But as you will see, that money brought in a pitcher that already has 14 big league wins and is under his team's control for five more years. Also, I have brought in some high upside arms forming the base for a relatively inexpensive pitching rotation for the big league roster.

Something is obvious when I look over my draft picks. I love high upside arms and athletic middle infield types. My draft picks since 2006 follow.

It should be noted that Christian Friedrich would have most likely received a signing bonus similar to Brett Wallace in 2008 had he been picked at the same spot.

2006 My Pick Bonus Cardinals Pick Actual
1 Adrian Cardenas SS  925000 Adam Ottavino 950000
1s Chris Perez RHP  800000 Chris Perez 800000
2 Justin Masterson RHP  510000 Brad Furnish 600000
2 Jon Jay OF  480000 Jon Jay 480000
2s Blake Wood RHP  460000 Mark Hamilton 465000
3 Marcus Lemon SS  1000000 Gary Daley 325000
4 Dustin Richardson LHP 107000 Eddie Degerman 100000
5 Brian Jeroloman C  165000 Shane Robinson 175000
6 Jonah Nickerson RHP  150000 Tyler Norrick 45000
7 Kent Gerst OF  75000 Luke Gorsett 60000
8 Brian Bocock SS * 72500 Allen Craig  15000
9 Jeff Manship RHP * 300000 Matt North 150000
10 Tommy Pham SS  325000 Blair Erickson **
5369500 4165000
1 Rick Porcello RHP  3580000 Pete Kozma  1395000
1s Justin Jackson SS  675000 Clayton Mortesen 650000
2 Eric Sogard 2B 400000 David Kopp 459000
2 Jess Todd RHP *  400000 Jess Todd 400000
3 Kyle Russell OF ** Daniel Descalso 255000
4 Marc Rzepczynski LHP 110000 Kyle Russell **
5 Michael Taylor OF 131000 Thomas Eager 134000
6 Cole St. Clair LHP ** Oliver Marmol 115000
7 Christian Colon 2B ** Deryk Hooker 100000
8 Tyler Henley CF 150000 Tyler Henley 150000
9 Jaime Pedroza SS  70000 Mike Stutes **
10 Paul Koss RHP  75000 Beau Riportella 123000
5591000 3781000
1 Christian Friedrich LHP 1350000 Brett Wallace 1840000
1s Tim Melville RHP  1250000 Lance Lynn 938000
2 Robbie Ross LHP  1575000 Shane Peterson 683000
3 Brandon Crawford SS  375000 Niko Vasquez 423000
4 Adrian Nieto C  376000 Scott Gorgen 250000
5 Zach Putnam RHP  600000 Jermaine Curtis  181000
6 T.J. House LHP  750000 Eric Fornataro 150000
7 Anthony Ferrera LHP  150000 Anthony Ferrara 150000
8 Nick Buss OF  95000 Ryan Kulik 58000
9 D.J. Mitchell RHP  400000 Aaron Luna 150000
10 Delta Cleary OF  250000 Alex Castellanos 70000
7171000 4893000
1 Shelby Miller RHP  2875000 Shelby Miller 2875000
2 Chris Dwyer LHP 1450000 Robert Stock 525000
3 Robbie Shields SS  315000 Joe Kelly 341000
4 Z. Von Rosenberg RHP  1200000 Scott Bittle 75000
5 Ryan Jackson SS  157500 Ryan Jackson 157500
6 Brooks Raley LHP 750000 Virgil Hill 150000
7 Brody Colvin RHP 900000 Kyle Conley 100000
8 Jacob Stewart OF ** Jason Stidham 100000
9 Kendal Volz RHP  550000 Nick McCully 100000
10 Tyler Lyons LHP ** Hector Hernandez 85000
8197500 5388500
* Made MLB debut
** Did not sign

Up next, my shadow Cardinals' farm system top prospect list.

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