Continue draft talk here. The Pirates went cheap with the fourth overall pick, grabbing Boston College catcher Tony Sanchez. (For much more on him, see below.) It was, in my opinion, a pretty dreadful pick, but it should mean that their next three picks today could end up being almost as important as the first one--they'll have plenty of cash to throw around.
9:20: The Pirates have chosen pitcher Victor Black, from Dallas Baptist, with the 49th overall pick. Here's some info:
STRENGTHS: Can hit 95 MPH; good slider, made strides with changeup, dominating performances this spring. WEAKNESSES: Was ineffective in previous seasons due to command problems; stamina could be an issue; like Arnett, he's made a lot of progress in a short time but needs to prove he can sustain it. PROJECTION: supplemental round; could be interesting for home-state Rangers at 44.
Sounds like a legit pick at #49. The Bucs do have to sign him, because it's the compensation pick for not signing Tanner Scheppers last year. He apparently throws very hard and can also throw his breaking ball and changeup for strikes. He didn't pitch until the end of his high school career, so hopefully he'll be able to get through the minors without injury problems.
The Pirates pick high school pitcher Brooks Pounders at #53. Note to Bill Virdon: his hometown is pronounced "Te-MEC-u-la." The Sporting News describes him as a "fringe first-rounder." He's a big guy and was also a hitter in high school, but the Pirates announced him as a pitcher. He's committed to USC. He throws four decent pitches, which is unusual for a high schooler, and he's very big, but he doesn't throw that hard yet. Here's some video of him hitting; he's a big dude for a high school pick, so there could be weight issues going forward.
With their third-round pick, the Pirates took Florida community college CF Evan Chambers. He's a small guy--5'9"--who was ranked near the bottom of Baseball America's top 200 draft prospects list. They recently described him as a 5th- or 6th-round talent.