The Baltimore Orioles opted to go long-term over short-term on the first night of the 2013 First Year Amateur Draft, selecting three high school players in SP Hunter Harvey, CF Josh Hart, and C Chance Sisco. All three are considered to be excellent athletes for their respective positions and have high ceilings, though it may take a few years to reach them, unlike recent O’s first round picks Kevin Gausman and Manny Machado.
Harvey, a 6’3’’, 175-pound right-hander from Catawba, North Carolina, is the son of former MLB pitcher Bryan Harvey. He has a fastball that can reach the mid-90s and what some scouts called the best breaking ball of all prep pitchers in the draft. He is raw, however, and needs to work on his command before he begins to excel. He would also benefit from continuing to develop his changeup. The Orioles should have no trouble signing Harvey, as he was never really planning on pitching at the college level.
Hart hails from Lilburn, Georgia, stands at 6’1’’, 190-pounds, and was thought by some to be a first-round lock (the O’s snagged him with compensatory pick 37). He is known for his fantastic speed and athleticism, and his defensive ability has been compared to Phillies CF Ben Revere. The main question some teams had with Hart is his power, which may or may not develop. Even if it doesn’t, the Orioles landed themselves a speedy potential leadoff hitter who puts up a great average and plays his position better than most others. Not bad for a compensatory selection. He did commit to Georgia Tech, but is said to be willing to sign with the Orioles and forgo college.
Sisco, a C that recently converted from SS, is from San Ramon, California. The 6’2’’, 193-pound left-handed hitter is said to be a “gap to gap” hitter with power potential. He has an average arm behind the plate and needs to work on his defense before moving up too far in the system. Of course, Buck Showalter could always decide to change his position to a corner spot, since he does have experience at Shortstop. A high risk, high reward player, but you can afford to do that in the 2nd round when you have as much faith in your current MLB team (and prospects) as the Orioles do.
The Houston Astros kicked off this year’s Draft festivities by taking Stanford P Mark Appel at pick #1, after passing on him last year in favor of P Carlos Correa. Appel ended up not signing with Pittsburgh and re-entering this year’s draft. 3B Kris Bryant, SP Johnathan Gray, SP Kohl Stewart, and OF Clint Frazier rounded out the top 5 picks, going to the Chicago Cubs, Colorado Rockies, Minnesota Twins, and Cleveland Indians, respectively.
The draft will continue on Friday afternoon with rounds 3-10, and will conclude on Saturday with rounds 11-40 (goodness, that seems like a lot). Teams have until July 12 at 5pm to sign their draft picks.
The Orioles take on the Rays at Tropicana Field tonight at 7:10pm ET.