Just one quick response for the mailbag this week, as we are busy putting together tonight’s Hots and Nots list. This week’s question comes from LowellSoxFan, who asks:
I noticed that you guys were the only one of the Mock Drafts to have Reymond Fuentes, the OF the Red Sox drafted, as a first round pick. You had him as the 19th best player overall and had him going to the Angels with the 24th pick. Was this pick a signability pick or just a reach by the Red Sox and why didn’t we hear a lot about him?
I don’t really believe the Red Sox reached with this pick, and instead believe it was an excellent value pick that fits the Red Sox historical draft philosophy. The Red Sox tend to favor players that other teams pass on because they have to go over slot or they lean toward high risk/high reward ‘toolsy’ players like their Casey Kelly pick last year. Fuentes is just that type of player.
I’m not sure why you hadn’t heard a lot about him, as most people have been aware of him, figuring him to be a 2nd/3rd round type of guy entering this Spring. We have had him in the 50-60 range since late April. Playing in Puerto Rico, cross-checking was more difficult, and few teams had visited him before the last couple of months, but my understanding is that there had been a relatively strong scout presence at his more recent outings. We moved him up the board consistently over the last two weeks as he had workouts for three Major League clubs and each time the buzz he created grew louder.
We really expected him to go as early as #17 to the Diamondbacks or #18 to the Marlins, but thought the Angels with back-to-back picks at #24/#25 seemed like a logical landing place. We always expected though that teams that were on Fuentes would also be on Trout, and Trout would go first. When it came to the Red Sox, we really expected that they would have their choice of an over slot steal, or one of the two Catchers, and in all honesty didn’t figure him for Boston.
We really like Fuentes’ upside though. He is extremely slight, but generates significant power…almost ‘Alfonso Sorianoish’. His number one tool though is his speed, which allows him to cover a tremendous amount of ground. But the thing that we liked best is that he has the Baseball awareness to intrinsically understand offensively, when to go the other way, when to use that line drive swing he has, and when to put the ball on the ground and just flat out run. We have a penchant for players that seem to inherently understand how to play the game and we put Fuentes in that category.
Tomorrow, we will recap the best and the worsts of this year’s draft and post our picks for this weekend’s College World Series.
Remember, if you have a question you can post it as a comment to our weekly Mailbag or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.