Six Picked in First Day of Draft

Shortstop Tony Delmonico, a 6-foot, 194 pound infielder from Florida State, hit .378 for the Seminoles, finishing second on the team with 91 hits and 69 runs batted in. He posted a .460 on-base percentage and a .4573 slugging average. He also stole 13 bases and was only caught four times. He also led the club with 26 errors.

#6 Tony Delmonico
The 21-year old transferred to Florida State after two years at Tennessee. He hit .329 with 12 home runs and 85 RBIs in his first two seasons as a Volunteer while starting in 113 games at Tennessee.

In 2007, he led the Vols in runs scored (53), home runs (9), RBIs (49) and walks (35). Five of his team-high nine home runs came during the final three weeks of the season while he hit .325. His 74 hits ranked second on the team and placed him second all-time at Tennessee after just two seasons. He was named to the SEC All-Tournament team after belting two home runs and driving in four runs en route to posting a .364 average in three games.

As a freshman in 2006, Delmonico started 54 games, hitting .335 with 68 hits, 36 RBIs and three homers and recorded a team-best .421 on-base percentage.

Delmonico also led the Volunteers with a .360 average in SEC play his freshman year and for his efforts he was named a Louisville Slugger Freshman All-American and earned a spot on the SEC All-Freshman Team...he was also named to's All-SEC second team.

He graduated in three years from Farragut High School in Knoxville, Tenn. and was the 10th-ranked overall prospect at the 2004 East Coast Showcase in Wilmington, N.C. and was the only junior to be ranked.

He earned All-State and District MVP honors as a junior in 2005 while helping the Admirals to a third-place finish in the state playoffs. He hit .387 as a freshman at Farragut in 2003 as the Admirals went 48-1, posted a ranking of No. 2 in the country and won the state championship.

#5 JonMichael Redding
Redding just completed his sophomore year at Florida Community College, Jacksonville. A right handed pitcher, he was 8-5, 2.02 with 123 strikeouts over 124/2 innings. He appeared in 21 games, 17 of them starts and held opponents to a .222 average.

At Lowndes high school in Valdosta, Georgia, pitcher/shortstop JonMichael Redding batted .410 with three home runs, and had a .535 on-base percentage. As a pitcher, he went 3-2 with a 3.03 ERA despite elbow troubles that kept him off the mound part of the season.

#4 Devaris Strange-Gordon
The Dodgers selected the son of big league pitcher Tom Gordon, shortstop Devaris Stange-Gordon, out of Seminole (Fla.) CC. He's smallish like his father at 5-foot-11, 160 pounds but is also a relative latecomer to baseball, only starting to play in high school at Windermere, Florida.

#3 Kyle Russell
Outfielder Kyle Russell topped NCAA Division I with a Texas school-record 28 homers in 2007, yet that wasn't enough to answer questions about his bat. But he had a poor history with wood bats and a seven-figure asking price made him available to the Cardinals in the fourth round.

He couldn't make a deal with the Cardinals an he returned to Texas for an up-and-down junior season. He hit one homer in March and 12 in April and there are some scouts don't feel his swing will work with wood.

He has power to all fields, though this spring he has been more pull-conscious. He's a good athlete with a right-field arm, but if he is to make it to The Show, it's his bat that will have to carry him.
Russell was drafted in the same round he did a year ago, although the Dodgers may not match the 2007 $800,000 bonus the Cardinals supposedly offered him last year.

#2 John Lindblom
The Dodgers selected 6-5, 240-pound John Lindblom of Purdue as their second pick in the 2008 Free Agent Draft. the 61st pick overall. The righthander was 1-2, 3.38 for the Boilermakers in 2008, recording an even dozen saves.

The highest-drafted player from 2005 who still has yet to turn pro, Lindblom turned down $300,000 as a third-round pick of the Astros.

Lindblom struggled as a starter before the Boilermakers made him a reliever late in the season. He was moved to the bullpen in the fourth weekend and pitched 8.1 innings in Big Ten action in relief, allowing zero runs and two hits while striking out eight, limiting Big Ten hitters to a .080 average in six appearances. He didn't allow a run in his final seven appearances of the season.

Now that he no longer has to pace himself, Lindblom throws at 94-95 mph with heavy life as he goes full bore for one or two innings. His hard curveball has improved, and he has quickened his delivery as well. He also mixes in an occasional splitter.

Lindblom throws strikes and has a resilient arm and workhorse build at 6-foot-5 and 240 pounds, but his stuff has been so much more electric out of the pen, suggesting that is his best role as a pro.

In the summer of 2007 he pitched for Cotuit Kettleers of the Cape Cod Baseball League and was named to the league's all-star game, pitching one scoreless inning with a strikeout He appeared in a team-high 17 games, all out of the bullpen and led the team with four wins, going 4-1 with two saves. Over 38.1 innings he had a 4.46 ERA and a team-leading 47 strikeouts.

He attended Harrison High School in Lafayette, Indiana, and was named Baseball America's top overall prospect in Indiana during his senior year. He fanned 265 batters in his high school career, third on the Raiders' career list and was an all-state selection as a senior, posting an 8-2 record with a 2.30 ERA.

During his senior year he struck out 117 in 76 innings and was named the Lafayette Journal & Courier's 2005 Big School Player of the Year, He won all-conference honoree as a sophomore, junior and senior and was presented Harrison's Top Gun Award as a sophomore.

The righthander pitched one season at the University of Tennessee, recording a 4-6, 5.01 record over 17 games, 15 of them as a starter. He pitched 88 innings and struck out 68, holding opponents to a .264 average.

Martin First Round Selection
The Dodgers selected Ethan Martin as their #1 pick in the 2008

Before the season started, Martin was considered one of the top corner infielders available, good power, good strong arm. In fact, his arm was so strong that he was used often as a pitcher, displaying a fastball in the mid-90s and and above average breaking ball and change.

He recorded a 9-1, 1.36 record while pitching in 11 games, all as a starter, striking out 112 in 60 innings (18.7 per nine innings). He allowed only 17 hits (2.6 per nine innings) while walking 22. Among high school pitchers he has the second-best fastball and third-best secondary pitch. If he is used as a pitcher, it will mark the fifth time in seven years the first L.A. selection was a high school pitcher.

The five names would include: Ethan Martin (2008), Chris Withrow, 2007; Clayton Kershaw, 2006; Scott Elbert (2004), Chad Billingsley (2003).

A product of the elite East Cobb program in suburban Atlanta, he was chosen as an Aflac All-American. The Dodgers will have a real decision as to where to use the young man, as they did with Edwin Jackson and James McDonald, converted from infielders to the pitching mound, and James Loney, making the switch from the rubber to first base.

Record Draft of 1968
The Draft Day Holy Grail is the 1968 Dodgers draft, the best in history. Scouting Director Al Campanis coordinated the remarkable effort, Fresco Thompson was the Farm Director and William Schweppe the Assistant Farm Director.

Fifteen players were selected by the Dodgers in one of four sections of the draft made it to the majors, including 12 who signed with the Dodgers. Some of the top names:

* Regular phase: Bobby Valentine (#1), Bill Buckner (#2), Tom Paciorek (#5), Joe Ferguson (#8), Doyle Alexander (#9).
* Secondary phase: Steve Garvey (#1), Sandy Vance (#2), Ron Cey (#3).
* January phase: Davey Lopes (32), Geoff Zahn (#9).

Others who were drafted by the Dodgers and made the major leagues included Ed Crosby, Mike Pazik, Bob Gallagher, Bob Sheldon and Bobby Randall.

The Dodgers, who picked fifth, went on to make 71 selections in the June draft, 17 more than any other club.

On the flip side of the coin, Charley Finley's Oakland As failed to sign their first two choices in the June draft or anyone else who would later play for Oakland.

* Note: Garvey, a third baseman the Dodgers converted to first base; Lopes, an outfielder converted to second base; and third baseman Cey eventually teamed with shortstop Bill Russell, another converted outfielder, to play together in the majors for 8 1/2 seasons. Coach Monte Basgall has been given credit for their success in changing positions. The Dodgers were a combined 268 games above .500 in that stretch and won four NL pennants and the 1981 World Series.

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