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Sunday, February 06, 2005

While waiting for the draft to progress, I thought I'd hop to an impromptu review of the picks made so far, explaining why I made certain selections and identifying what surprised me and what didn't. More to come after each round, I think.

Before anyone takes something I say seriously, consider that my team didn't make the playoffs last year. Opinions are like odometers, and your mileage may vary.

ROUND ONE
My pick: Johan Santana.
Why I made this pick: The top-shelf sluggers that were head and shoulders above the rest at their respective positions were mostly gone, and I didn't want to reach for a position scarcity pick like Mark Loretta this early. Mike got a solid end-of-the-round bargain with Loretta later, but with Santana on the board, I couldn't pass up the league's top pitcher.
Best value of the round: Scott Rolen. Getting a total package talent like this as the third hot corner man taken has to be satisfying. He's right up there with Beltre in offensive performance and defense, and was taken three picks later.
Biggest surprise: The initials are "AJP," and that doesn't stand for "All-Japan Pro wrestling."

ROUND TWO
My pick: J.D. Drew
Why I made this pick: Drew had an MVP-type year, and his simulated equivalent won't cause clubhouse problems or have to dodge virtual batteries. In a pinch, he can start in center field, too.
Best value of the round: Curt Schilling. My second-ranked pitcher lasts longer than Clemens, Unit or Schmidt. Tempted to go with Melvin Mora here, but one of baseball's most underrated players is the fourth third baseman taken and the first pick of the second round, which shows proper respect.
Biggest surprise: Tim Hudson. The pitcher run continues, but is Hud's dropping strikeout rate cause for concern?

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