The 2011 MLB Rule 4 Draft

(7:04 P.M.) The Pirates are officially on the clock.

(7:16) First two picks in and we’ve already got a surprise. Gerrit Cole did indeed go first overall to Pittsburgh, and Seattle then surprised everyone by taking Virginia left-hander Danny Hultzen 2nd overall.

(7:19) Arizona takes Trevor Bauer of UCLA 3rd overall.

(7:25) The Orioles take Oklahoma high school pitcher Dylan Bundy.

(7:27) Was it me or was Gerrit Cole’s explanation of why he didn’t go with the Yankees before a bit lame?  He said it wasn’t his time and then rambled a bit.  It seemed like even he didn’t know why he didn’t at least listen to an offer.  (Tamar)

(7:32) The first position player is off the board, as the Royals have selected high school outfielder Bubba Starling. This could be the first difficult sign of the draft too, as Starling could be headed to the University of Nebraska to play football. (Brien)

(7:37) Anthony Rendon, who many projected to go second, is now off the board as the Washington Nationals take the Rice third baseman.  THere was some question over his medicals, as he has had a couple ankle surgeries along with a shoulder injury.  Happy 21st birthday to him as well.  (Tamar)

(7:43) Arizona takes Archie Bradley, a right-handed pitcher out of high school in Oklahoma.  He could be headed to the University of Oklahoma to play quarterback, but after seeing how excited he and his family were it looks like will be playing baseball.  (Tamar)

(7:47) The Cleveland Indians take the top ranked shortstop in the draft, Francisco Lindor out of Florida.  The switch hitting infielder is just seventeen, turning eighteen in November.  Lindor is committed to Florida State. (Tamar)

(7:53) We get back-to-back Florida shortstops, as the Chicago Cubs take Javier Baez.  (Tamar)

(7:59) Another middle infielder off the board as the Padres take Cory Spangenberg, a second baseman out of Indian River State College in Florida.  He has a verbal commitment to University of Miami. (Tamar)

(8:06) The Houston Astros take New Britain, CT native and UConn Husky outfielder George Springer with pick number 11.  (Tamar)

(8:11) The Milwaukee Brewers take RHP Taylor Jungman from the University of Texas.  (Tamar)

(8:16) The Mets take the State of Wyoming’s highest draft pick ever, as they choose Brandon Nimmo from Cheyenne East High School.  The interesting part of this story is that there isn’t high school baseball in Wyoming so he had to get noticed playing Legion baseball.  (Tamar)

(8:22) Another interesting story with the Florida Marlins’ pick.  They take Tampa, Florida RHP Jose Fernandez.  He was caught trying to flee Cuba when he was younger, arrested and told he would never be able to play baseball again.  He later defected and is now a first round draft pick. (Tamar)

(8:27) Milwaukee takes another pitcher, as they pick Jed Bradley out of Georgia Tech.  Bradley is a big southpaw listed as 6’4 and 224 lbs. (Tamar)

(8:33) The Los Angeles Dodgers take LHP Chris Reed out of Stanford University. (Tamar)

(8:39) The Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim take C.J. Cron out of the University of Utah.  He’s a big (6’4, 235 lbs) first baseman who hits for power. (Tamar)

(8:44) With the 18th pick in the draft, Oakland takes Sonny Gray, a RHP out of Vanderbilt University. (Tamar)

(8:52) Another Connecticut native and UConn Husky goes, as the Red Sox take Matt Barnes a lanky right-handed pitcher.  (Tamar)

(9:07) Apologies, had to run out for a second.  The Rockies took LHP Tyler Anderson out of Oregon with the 20th pick.  The Blue Jays took Tyler Beede, a RHP out of Lawrence Academy in Massachusetts and St. Louis took second baseman Kolten Wong from Hawaii.

(9:13) The Nationals used their second pick of the round to take RHP Alex Meyer out of Kentucky. (Tamar)

(9:19) The Tampa Bay Rays take RHP Tyler Guerrieri, a high schooler out of South Carolina whose fastball has touched 98 mph.  That leaves the Yankees as the only AL East team who has not made a pick in the draft yet. (Tamar)

(9:23) Goodness gracious, the Nationals have really put a lot of high end talent into their organization. Over the past three seasons, the Nationals have drafted Strasburg, Bryce Harper (basically the consensus #1 prospect in baseball right now) and now the best hitter in this draft plus a quality arm in Myers. The crew down there is doing a heck of a job. (Brien)

(9:29) With their second first round pick, the Red Sox take high school catcher Blake Swihart. Given the state of catching in that organization, I won’t be shocked if they’ve got him signed by the end of business tomorrow and starting behind the plate in Fenway this month. (Brien)

(9:36) The Reds pick up Robert Stephenson, a RHP from California. (Tamar)

(9:44) The Braves use their first pick of the draft to take Sean Gilmartin, a southpaw from Florida State. (Tamar)

(9:47) San Francisco goes with a middle infielder whose favorite infielder is Derek Jeter.  Joe Panik is coming out of St. John’s College in New York. This was a bit of surprise, as Panik didn’t look like he was going to go this early. (Tamar)

(9:54) The Twins take Levi Michael, a shortstop out of UNC-Chapel Hill.  He is a switch hitting shortstop. (Tamar)

(9:58) This now turns into the Tampa Bay Rays show… (Tamar)

(9:59) If you’re keeping score at home, the Rays just took Mike Mahtook, an outfielder from LSU, with the pick they got from the Yankees. His offensive tolls aren’t extremely well rated, and his biggest attributes are his intangibles if you listen to the MLB Network analysts, which is a nice way of saying he doesn’t really stand out. Still, it will be interesting to watch this guy develop. (Brien)

(10:05) With their third pick of the evening, the Rays take Jake Hager, a shortstop from Las Vegas who has committed to Arizona State. (Tamar)

(10:12) Bud Selig just cracked a “Joe Torre can’t do anything without Don Zimmer” joke. I laughed.

(10:18) Only 60 seconds per pick in the compensation round, so no more pick by pick updates. Sit tight, the Yankees will be up before you know it. Until then, Tamar and I will be entertaining you with our insight and biting wit. (Brien)

(10:19) The Nationals have picked 3 Boras clients with their first three picks in the draft. Boras and Rizzo, total BFF’s.

(10:24) There goes one of the possible picks for the Yankees as the Rays nab Brandon Martin, a shortstop from Cali.  (Tamar)

(10:26) Ok, I let it go through the first round, but I can’t hold back any more; MLB Network’s draft coverage is absolutely terrible! And I know I bag on them a lot, but this is just embarrassing. Harold Reynolds thinks literally everyone is a “great player,” John Hart has graded approximately 171 guys as top-15 talent, and Greg Amsinger is acting like a total clown. Just totally embarrassing. But at least there’s no Mitch Williams I guess. (Brien)

(10:30) You took the words right out of my mouth, Brien!  Harold Reynolds kills me. I want to know if he wanders around his house alone shouting out people’s names. (Tamar)

(10:36) The Rays take Tyler Goeddel at 41st overall. This was a guy a lot of people might fall to the Yankees, and his hit tool graded out very well. I know Mike Axisa of RAB was particularly enamored with him. But, alas, Tampa Bay grabs him 10 picks ahead of the Yankees. (Brien)

(10:40) Five more picks until the Yankees finally get to go!  Who’s excited? (Tamar)

(10:49) Lee Mazzilli just announced the Yankees’ first pick of the 2011 draft.  They take Dante Bichette, Jr. who is committed to Georgia, but will almost certainly sign with the Yankees. (Tamar)

(10:52) I do not really care for this pick, and judging from the instant reaction on Twitter, no one else does either. Honestly, other than that I don’t really even know what to say about it. It’s even more puzzling than the Cito Culver pick was last year. (Brien)

(11:04) And with a nice moment between Joe Torre and Don Zimmer, that’s it for the televised portion of the 2011 draft. Be sure to check back tomorrow for more information on Dante Bichette Jr., and of course updates on the rest of the Yankees’ picks. I expect there will be at least a couple of intriguing guys picked by the Bombers tomorrow. (Brien)