Randy Smith: After watching him in Instructs, I think the biggest thing he needs to do is get healthy and stay on the field, that way everyone is going to be able to see the athleticism and competitiveness that we saw when we drafted him. Right now, the big key for him is just getting more at-bats and getting a little better on his jumps in the outfield. As I said, he looked very good in instructs, and we were really encouraged by what we saw. I do think the Midwest League will be a challenge for him, and that is the goal we have for him coming into spring training, but he is a good enough athlete to do it.
After shortstop B.J. Guinn came down from Eugene, he hit pretty well. Everyone raves about his defense and athleticism; do you think his bat will be able to play at upper levels?
Randy Smith: He was probably our most improved player from June through the end of the season. I think he was a little rusty after the draft since he had a bit of a layoff. Defensively in Instructs, he was very good, and he's starting to incorporate his legs into his swing more and keeping the ball out of the air; which he is going to have to do at the plate. He's a good athlete, and I really like what I've seen from him.
Scouting Director Jason McLeod was pretty excited about being able to sign outfielder Jose Dore out of Orlando in this year's draft. I know he only had a few at-bats in Arizona, but what did you think about him?
Randy Smith: The first thing is his arm strength, he has a pure right field arm. Offensively, he has power; when he hits the ball its loud, hard contact. He's going to be a pull hitter, but he needs to get better going the other way, especially driving the ball to left-center. So far, though, we like what we see, he is really strong for a kid his age.
Outfielder Corey Adamson really seemed to make some strides as a hitter this year in the AZL. What did you see that impressed you about him?
Randy Smith: I thought he had a good year, really I would have been happy if he hit .220, but he kept getting better every month. The Aussies have so far to catch up when they come over here just because of the competition level they have at home; so the strides he made this season were very impressive. His outfield play has improved, but he also needs to get better jumps.
You found some pitchers in some unlikely places this past draft and the first one that stands out is Adam Schrader from Southwest Minnesota State. What can you tell us about him?
Randy Smith: Finding those guys was pure scouting and Jason and his team deserve a lot of credit. Schrader is an interesting guy, good size and still has room to fill out more. He had a good Instructional League and can run it up into the low-90s; so yeah, we have some plans for him next year.
Mark Hardy, a big lefty out of the University of British Columbia, made it all the way to San Antonio for a spot start. Reports of his velocity fluctuate, can you tell us a little about what it actually is and what he throws?
Randy Smith: The size and being lefty is an obvious benefit and the first thing that comes to mind with him. He has a fringy to average fastball right now, sometimes it will be a little more; other times a little less depending on the game. Has a nice curve and generally a good idea of what he's trying to do. He was a good late round pick and we are counting on him next year to pitch some innings for us.
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