2014-Draft1[1]

Angels Mid-Round Draft Picks

Yesterday, we explored the Angels top three selections of the draft.  Today, we’ll give you brief rundowns on some notable mid-round selections the Angels made in last week’s draft.

Fourth Round

RHP Jeremy Rhoades – Rhoades looks like a reliever to me.  He has a high impact, high effort, cross his body, almost fall off the mound type of delivery.  The fact that he was once used as a starter is both puzzling and amusing to me.  Possibly even more confusing is the fact that the Angels drafted him with the intention of making him a starter in the short-term.  Good luck with that.  Whatever role he’s in, Rhoades has the stuff you like to see.  As a starter, a 90-92 mph fastball with movement and a fall off the table slider.   As a reliever, it is expected that his fastball may climb into the mid-90’s, but again, the Angels will try and push him to be a starter first.

Fifth Round

RHP Jake Jewell – If you aren’t worried about grabbing a high risk pitcher or position player in the fifth round, than Jake Jewell is a fantastic grab for the Angels.  He has a verbal commit to Oklahoma and with good reason, this kid has tons of projection.  The thing that jumps out immediately about him is his loose arm.  Jewell pumps mid-90’s fastballs without a great deal of effort or pressure on his elbow, which hopefully means his arm will remain healthy in the long-term.  Jewell also has a very good slider and has shown an advanced feel for a change up.  I wouldn’t be surprised to see him transition into a starter, but at this point I can see success in any role he assumes. (Update: Yesterday Jewell signed with the Angels on a below slot bonus, which helps them out considerably with other plays demanding above slot money)

Sixth Round

RF Alex Abbott – Finally!  A position player, and a high-risk high school one at that.  I really like what I see in this kid.  He has a beautiful left-handed swing, loose and fluid, gets the barrel out quickly and can put some backspin on the ball. He’s not overly big (6’0, 190) but is athletic and has a cannon for an arm.  Abbott was used as a CF in the prep ranks but will inevitably move to RF as a professional.  He’s an average runner.  I’d look for continued power to develop in this kid, who has all the tools to turn into something special.

Ninth Round

RHP Jordan Kipper – TCU plays in an especially competitive conference for college ball and Kipper was not only the staff ace for the Horned-Frogs, but one of the better pitchers in the conference.  This is his third time being drafted, so perhaps the Angels will finally get him to sign.

Twelfth Round

RHP Jared Ruxer  – Ruxer is currently on the mend from Tommy John surgery and it appears the Angels are intent on buying low on Ruxer.  Jared has a fastball that sits in the low-90’s and a curve and change up that he spot in the zone.  He has a low three-quarters delivery and projects adequately both in a starting a bullpen role.  Before surgery, Ruxer owned a 2.27 ERA on the season and had a shot at breaking into the top 5 rounds if healthy.

Twelfth Round(2)

RHP Kam Uter – Uter is a high school RHP that has a fastball that reaches the mid-90’s.  He appears to be a difficult sign though as Uter was ranked as one of the best wide-receivers in the country and has a full-ride scholarship to play football at Wake Forest.

Thirteenth Round

3B Zach Houchins – In 2011 he was drafted in the ninth round and chose not to sign and instead attend East Carolina on a baseball scholarship.  He was also reprimanded for posting racially derogatory and homophobic tweets.  As a senior this season, it seems likely he’ll sign as it’s his last chance as a drafted player.

Eighteenth Round

RHP Austin Robichaux – How’s this for a build, 6 ft. 6 inches tall, 170 lbs.  Robichaux is going to need to put some meat on those bones of his but does offer some intrigue as a pitcher.  Autin’s best weapon is a sinking low-90’s fastball that he pounds the strike zone with.  He also offers a change up and slider in the low-80’s.  Definitely a worthwhile selection for the Angels as there is certainly projection left in his frame and room for growth.

Nineteenth Round

C John Bormann – We know nothing about his bat but check out this stat-line from this past season.  Bormann gunned down 61 percent of base stealers.  61%!  The average major league line is somewhere between 25-30%.  If nothing else, that’ll get him the reputation as a defensive first catcher, the Angels love those.

Scott Allen

About Scott Allen

Scott is a writer for The Outside Corner and writer/prospect expert at Monkey With A Halo can be followed on Twitter @ScottyA_MWAH

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