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Marlins Draft Redux: 2000

Ramp

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With the draft quickly approaching, I figured I would take the time to look at the Marlins first 5 rounds of each draft since 2000. We will focus on what the Marlins saw in these kids, what they have done, and where they are currently. We will also look at which players were taken after them who are currently in the major leagues.

After going 64-98 in 1999, the Marlins had the honor of selecting first in the 2000 MLB amateur draft. With that pick, the Marlins selected 1b Adrian Gonzalez, out of Eastlake HS in Chula Vista, California. The Marlins signed the then 6'2 lefthander to a $3mil signing bonus. The team were drawn to his smooth stroke and how flawless he was around the bag at first base. Right away he was compared to Rafael Palmeiro with the bat, and Mark Grace with the glove. High praise for an anyone, especially an 18 year old. There were not many weaknesses seen by scouts, but some wondered if he ever would hit for more than 20 homeruns in a season. They expected him to be more of a doubles hitter. In his first few seasons, he hit 17 homeruns but most of his slugging percentage came from his 30+ doubles in each season. Eventually, he was "passed" by Jason Stokes on the 1b depth chart and the Marlins decided to move him to Texas in the summer of 2003 in exchange for reliever Ugueth Urbina. That move certainly worked out well for the Marlins, but the Rangers couldn't find a spot for Adrian, especially with Justin Morneau manning first base. He was then shipped to San Diego (along with Chris Young) where he would finally get the chance the play everyday. Last season, he hit .304/.365/.500 with 38 doubles and 24 homeruns in an extreme pitchers park. The Marlins definitely made the right decision on Gonzalez back in 2000, especially when you look at the rest of the first round with the likes of Adam Johnson, Luis Montanez and Mike Stodolka taken right after him.

In round 2, the Marlins selected yet another first baseman with the 41st overall pick. This time it was Jason Stokes out of Coppell HS in Coppell, Texas. Jason was known mainly for his "light tower" power as he set a high school record with 23 homers in the spring of 2000. The reason why he dropped so far in the draft was because of signability issues as he was all set to attend the University of Texas before the Marlins gave him $2.027mil in August right before fall semester started. He showed a nice compact swing to go with the confidence that makes some of these young kids special. His main weakness was that he was a terrible fielder, and with Adrian Gonzalez being a very polished first baseman, Jason was tried in the outfield but he couldn't handle it out there. He injured his back and never returned to the outfield. It was 1b or bust. In 2002, he won the Midwest League MVP after hitting .341/.421/645 with 27 homeruns in only 349 at bats. That's when it was determined that he had passed Adrian Gonzalez on the 1b depth chart. Since then, he has had trouble with nagging injuries from his hand, to his hamstring, to his thumb. He hasn't been able to stay healthy and his batting average had taken a dive too. He was traded just a few weeks ago to Oakland in exchange for a catcher (John Baker). Another terrible round, other worthy names selected in round 2 were Xavier Nady and Chad Qualls.

After taking two first basemen with their first two picks, the Marlins went in a different direction with their 3rd round pick. At pick 71, they chose lefthanded pitcher Rob Henkel out of UCLA. Right after signing for $650,000, Henkel would struggle with shoulder issues for the rest of the season which saw his velocity drop into the low 80s.. Luckily he was able to able to rebound and his velocity came back to the 88-92 range. He dominated high-A Jupiter in 2002 but that was really the last time he showed any dominance. Luckily for the Marlins, they decided to send him to Detroit in the winter of 2002 in exchange for Mark Redman (who would help them towards a WS championship). Rob was released by the Red Sox in February of 2007. The notables in the third round were outfielder Grady Sizemore and starting pitcher Chris Young.

With their pick in the 4th round (101 overall), the Marlins drafted outfielder Anthony Brewer. The 6 footer out of Simeon HS in Chicago, Illinois was drafted based more on his high ceiling than anything. Rated a 70 (on the 20/80 scale) in speed, that was the only thing he showed in his 3 seasons with the Marlins. He hit a combined .201/.300/.294 in his 3 seasons (missed 2001 due to injury) before being released after the 2003 season. He hit just 8 homeruns in his career, but did manage to steal 46 bases while striking out 258 times in 834 at bats. Instead of Brewer, the Marlins could have had outfielder David DeJesus or pitcher Cliff Lee.

In the fifth round, the Marlins selected outfield masher Jim Kavourias. The 6'4, 230 pounder mostly known for his power hit 23 homeruns for low-A Kane County in 2001 as a 21 year old. That was the last success he really had, as once the talent level increased, his numbers decreased. A career .233/.312/.414 hitter, he managed to hit 20 homeruns in Jupiter in 2003, but he walked just 34 times to his 97 strikeouts in 389 at bats. In 2004, the Montreal Expos selected him in the Rule 5 Draft before returning him back to Florida. He then hit .153/.223/.252 as a 24 year old in Jupiter, before being released at the end of the season. He has since played some independant ball. In round 5, we took Big Jim over third baseman Garrett Atkins, and closer Bobby Jenks.

The rest of our draft was pretty weak but we did manage a steal in the 17th round by taking a shortstop from North Alabama. I think you may have heard of this guy, he goes by the nickname of Hammer.
 

Guest

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That move certainly worked out well for the Marlins, but the Rangers couldn't find a spot for Adrian, especially with Justin Morneau manning first base.

Mark Texiara?
 

TSwift25

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That move certainly worked out well for the Marlins, but the Rangers couldn't find a spot for Adrian, especially with Justin Morneau manning first base.

Mark Texiara?

Teixeira?

:thumbup

At the time, I was upset with the 2000 draft. I remember that Gonzalez was criticized mostly as a signability pick, and that Stokes was a waste of a pick because he was unsignable. The person I was highest on was Henkel...and now we know why I'm not a scout :p .

But seriously, you look back at that and you have to give Deallin' Dave credit. He got 2 real quality players with his 2 picks. Gonzalez has grown into the mold of player many thought he'd become, and Stokes was just one of those myriad baseball flameouts who kept teasing just enough to stick around for a while and still be somewhat highly thought of.

However, you look at some of the first round talent that came out that year (Baldelli, Utley, Sean Burnett, Bonser) and you realize that it was a pretty deep draft...plus, some of the outfielders in that draft are just so damn tempting to fantasize in center for us (Baldelli, De Jesus).

Whatever, the draft pretty much directly lead to the 2003 playoffs as Gonzalez kept living up to his promise and Urbina worked out.

IMO, one of only 2 drafts (the other being 2002) that you can look back on and not throw your hands up in disgust over that falls in this period.

Great idea Ramp, I LOVE this stuff.

:thumbup :thumbup :thumbup
 

FlummoxedLummox

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Awesome write-up. Very informative and well written.
 

Guest

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I am just happy we started incorporating in promising position players again along with promising pitching...Raynor, Cousins, Langley, Hatcher, Jacobs, etc.
 

Ramp

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That move certainly worked out well for the Marlins, but the Rangers couldn't find a spot for Adrian, especially with Justin Morneau manning first base.

Mark Texiara?
lol funny... I was thinking "do not put Morneau, do not put Morneau".... and then I did

anyway, 2001 should come out sometime today

and swifty, thats 2000 first round sucked

linkage
 

Guest

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Interesting note about Morneau...us and the Devil Rays had picks before the Twins in the 3rd round in '99...the D-Rays took Doug Waechter and we took Josh Wilson, 4 and 3 picks ahead, respectively.

What a crap shoot. Just like Amezaga being the player selected the pick before Albert Pujols.
 

isd71

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Interesting note about Morneau...us and the Devil Rays had picks before the Twins in the 3rd round in '99...the D-Rays took Doug Waechter and we took Josh Wilson, 4 and 3 picks ahead, respectively.

What a crap shoot. Just like Amezaga being the player selected the pick before Albert Pujols.

Yeah I looked up Pujols one day and about passed out when I saw that he wasn't a non draft free agent singed out of the Dominican or Venezuela but was an 11th round pick out of some Juco.

Thanks for doing this Ramp its always fun to look back and dream of what could have been.
 

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The more I think about it, the more I think "man, how awesome would it of been to take Sizemore", even though he got a ginormous signing bonus for a 3rd rounder.

The article in this weeks SI doesnt dissuade my line of thinking at all.
 

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