MLB Draft Coverage
2014 MLB Draft Reactions: Day One Live Blog
2014 MLB Draft Rankings: The Draft Board
2014 MLB Draft Podcast: Jim Callis
6. Bryan Emery, RF, Colombia
Projected Bonus/Team: $2.1 million, Padres
Confidence/Other Contenders: Low, Rockies & Yankees: The price will be around $2 million, maybe a bit more with these three teams mentioned the most. Padres seemed most likely, but then GM Josh Byrnes was fired and now it's unclear if that affects their international operations.
6'3/190, B/R, July 2nd Age: 16.33
Some scouts think Emery may be the best player in the whole July 2nd crop and his trainer, Ivan Noboa, is notorious for pulling rabbits our of his hat, including the biggest bonus of all-time to the unlikely Rangers signee RF Nomar Mazara. The reason why Emery is such a mystery man with uncertainty surrounding what he'll get is Noboa plays his negotiations very close to the vest and refuses to let his players play in games, so the opinions of his players vary wildly from team to team. Emery works out all over the diamond but fits in right field long-term with an above average arm and above average speed. Emery is a switch hitter that has arguably the purest stroke in the whole class and could grow into 20+ homer power, but the lack of game at bats give scouts doubts even though the tools are there.
7. Anderson Espinoza, RHP, Venezuela
Projected Bonus/Team: $2.0 million, Red Sox
Confidence/Other Contenders: High, None: bonus has been rumored around $2.0 million since December, though the exact number varies source to source.
5'11/170, R/R, July 2nd Age: 16.31
Espinoza isn't big, though some source have said he's grown to 6'0 recently and could still add another 10-15 pounds to his frame. While the projection isn't there, the above average stuff already is, similar to the top pitcher in last year's market, Rangers RHP Marcos Diplan, who got $1.5 million. Espinoza is bigger and mostly sits 90-93 but has hit 97 mph at his best with more feel and a smoother delivery than Diplan, making him a superior prospect. He also has an above average curveball that some call plus and a changeup that's flashed above average potential. There's easy mid-rotation projection and it's still early, but you can't rule out frontline potential if everything comes together.
8. Juan De Leon, RF, Dominican Republic
Projected Bonus/Team: $2.0 million, Yankees
Confidence/Other Contenders: High, None
6'1/175, R/R, July 2nd Age: 16.80
De Leon is another player that's easy to immediately like, as he has plus bat speed, above average speed and arm strength and a chance for 20+ homers if he reaches his physical potential. There's a chance he fits in center field but he's probably a right fielder, though his arm has played below average at times for scouts. The power potential is above average and the hitting tools are there, but De Leon will take wild pull-happy cuts at times, but his trainer (hilariously named Banana) is known for developing hitters well and De Leon has shown an ability to make adjustments and hit in games. Yes, the buscone named Banana is one of the best hitting coaches on the island.
9. Jonathan Amundaray, RF, Venezuela
Projected Bonus/Team: $1.5 million, Yankees
Confidence/Other Contenders: High, None: bonus has been rumored to be a few different numbers around $1.5 million, but Yankees have been the destination since December
6'2/175, R/R, July 2nd Age: 16.14
Amundaray, offers a lot of tools that scouts like, but accounts of his ability to hit in games varies from scout to scout, which dictates whether they think the Yankees are getting a good deal here. He, like many Venezuelan players, don't train for showcases like the Dominican players, so his showing in controlled events doesn't necessarily blow scouts away and many top decision makers won't travel to Venezuela, so their looks were limited before he was off the market. While he didn't get ahold of one in the BP video above, Amundaray flashes above average power projection and some feel to hit in games, though has trouble with breaking stuff right now and his mechanics will vary. His arm is above average and fits in right field and while he's a solid-average runner, he's still raw defensively. There's some projection and adjustments necessary, but there's physical projection and a classic right field profile.
10. Pedro Gonzalez, 3B, Dominican Republic
Projected Bonus/Team: $1.4 million, Rockies
Confidence/Other Contenders: High, None: the Padres were mentioned early and the number had been mentioned at $1.6M and a couple numbers higher, but the consensus settled here.
6'5/170, R/R, July 2nd Age: 16.68
Gonzalez looks more physically like a younger Carlos Correa or Manny Machado than Adrian Rondon, though Gonzalez is a legit 6'5 and that's both the most impressive and most worrying thing about him. There's never been a shortstop that height and very few good contact hitters have limbs that long, but Gonzalez shows advanced contact and defensive ability for his size and age. Most think he slides over to third base, where he could be above average across the board defensively. He doesn't have much power now but should grow into 15-20 homer power and if he can maintain his looseness and barrel awareness, could grow into a non-typical but everyday player. It's also worth noting he speaks fluent English, which helps mitigate one of the factors that holds Latin players back early in their careers.