MLB Draft Breakdown: 2021

By: Austin Alexander – July 14, 2021 In a year that professional scouts will admit there was far less draftable prep talent in South Carolina than years of yore, two young men managed to have their names called over the three-day event! The more you peer into this year’s draft, the event itself took on a very different look due to drastic changes within the rules pertaining to signing players and by reducing the draft by 20 rounds over past seasons (only 5 in 2020), thus affecting who and how many guys were selected. The longer you follow the draft, the more you think you understand it. Just the opposite is true, however. Especially the past two years! Any baseball sage will tell you it is really a crapshoot. Many variables come into play when you sit back and look at the picks, the rounds they fell in and the names that got passed over. One term people must understand is “signability”. Especially near the top of the draft. In many cases, most of the players selected in the first 4-7 Rounds coulbe be similar in ability. Maybe in the Top 15 Rounds? Conventional wisdom tells you that the first pick in the draft must be the best player and that the last pick is the whatever-th best player in the country. Not so. A player’s signability can vault him near the top of the board; low signability can force that player to fall through the draft entirely. Scouts often spend as much time researching a player’s signability than they do evaluating their talent. We’ve all heard of clubs that take a kid in the top two rounds and cannot come to terms with him. Sometimes it is because the area scout has not done his due research or he should have known better than to select that player that high in the draft. But it has also happened before that a player and his family or advisor was not truthful as to their dollar figure. Sometimes a player’s “advisor” or his known desire to attend school will force his draft stock to fall, though he may be a first rounder ability-wise. Clubs have until midnight of July 31 (up from first day of class once upon a time) to agree to terms with a draft pick. Some of the early rounders will forego the drama and sign quickly so they can begin their journey to the big leagues. Others will drag it out until the deadline in an attempt to drain every penny out of a club. Many players chosen will continue to be under the watchful eye of the organization that selected them in case they make a significant jump during the summer, in which the club may, then, offer a contract or “up the ante” in an attempt to sign the player. Draft picks are made largely on a players present “tools” and how he “projects” down the road. Many selections will turn the heads of baseball people. More selections will blow the mind of casual fans because the layman only sees black or white, ie. base hit versus out, win versus loss. Understand, just because a pitcher strikes out TJ White does not automatically vault that arm to prospect status. If a good high school pitcher beats Bishop England with Daniel Brooks on the mound, it does not mean he will see his name on a draft board. When a “punching judy” flairs one into the outfield off of Billy Barlow, that does not guarentee that he will even play past high school. If a fast runner steals two bases off of Cole Messina, if Will Taylor gets burnt for a double…it does not necessarily mean that offensive player has a future in professional baseball! See where I am going with this? Scouting is not a science. Players do get over-scouted and some do get over-looked. By in large, however, these guys who scout for a living are good at what they do. VERY good, in fact! They run up tens of thousands of miles riding through the countryside away from their families looking for the next Clayton Kershaw and Mike Trout. Sure, they’ll miss on guys from time to time but they are still smarter than most of us and their eyes keener than you can imagine. Did they find the next MLB All-Star in our state in 2021? Only time will tell. *Note: Players accounted for either played high school or college baseball in South Carolina this spring. -2021 MLB Draft in Review- Selected Day 1 (1 Rd) Day 2 (2-10 Rds) Day 3 (11-20 Rds) Total SC Players 0  13 11 24 College players 0 12 10 22 HS players 0  1  1 2 Pitchers 0  7 9 16  Catchers 0  1 1  2 Infielders 0  1  0 1 Outfielders 0 4 1 5 Division I 0  11 10  21 Division II 0 0 0  0 Junior College 0 1 0  1   NAIA 0 0 0 0 HS 5A 0 1 1 2 HS 4A 0  0  0  0 HS 3A 0 0  0  0 HS 2A 0 0  0  0 HS 1A 0 0 0 0 SCISA 0 0 0 0 Rd 1-10 11-20 * 13 11 By College (22): 8-South Carolina, 6-Clemson, 2-Coastal Carolina, 2-USC-Upstate, 2-Wofford-2, 1-Florence-Darlington Tech, 1-Charleston Southern *Note: Players accounted for either played high school or college baseball in South Carolina this spring. -2019 MLB Draft in Review- Selected Day 1 (1-2 Rd) Day 2 (3-10 Rds) Day 3 (11-40 Rds) Total SC Players 1  6 26 33 College players 1 6 24 31 HS players 0  0  2 2 Pitchers 0  5 13 18  Catchers 0  0 3  3 Infielders 1  0  8 9 Outfielders 0 1 2 3 Division I 1  5  14   22 Division II 0 1 6  8 Junior College 0 0 1  1   NAIA 0 0 0 0 HS 5A 0 0 1  1 HS 4A 0  0  0   0 HS 3A 0 0  0   0 HS 2A 0 0  1  1 HS 1A 0 0 0 0 SCISA …

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MLB Draft Preview: 2021

Compiled By: DP Staff – July 10, 2021 The combines have concluded, the notes have been made, scouting miles have been logged and final organizational meetings have been had…and now it’s finally draft time! The First Round begins Sunday on the MLB Network at 6 PM. As we mosey around South Carolina throughout the calendar, we are ofte… The new DP website is here. For all the great DP content, subscribe. If you have any login/subscription issues, please contact our support team. Your feedback on the new experience is appreciated as well. Username Password Remember Me     Forgot Password

The State of DP Address

By: Austin Alexander – February 8, 2021 As Diamond Prospects’ revs up the engine for our 16th prep baseball year and while the Holiday Season has now closed, a 2021 campaign awaits us, hopefully! The purpose of this 7th annual The State of DP Address is aimed to accomplish a handful of things, mostly to inform our loyal viewers and pass out a few kudos as well. What a year it has been since that last letter from us to you. 2020 happened like a wrecking ball, shattering so many things and affected every single one of us in various ways. Along with The Pandemic leading to the cancellation of spring baseball and political/social unrest (just to name a few), what a whirlwind the last ten months have been. Each of us have had to re-route, adjust on the fly and tap into creative juices we never knew existed to stay afloat. Fortunately, when the green light came on for hardball, we all jumped on the gas pedal to view and play as much baseball as we could, simply because none of us knew when the rug could be pulled from beneath us. Anyone reading this excerpt probably walked into a dozen or more new venues, just because they were available and baseball was ‘allowed’ on their diamond. Finding cages, bullpen mounds and serviceable dirt came a premium, forcing us to realize how priviledged we were one year ago. So, as we all prepare for a season ahead full of hope and sincere wishes of a baseball campaign that resembles ‘normal’ our goal with the next five minutes of your time is to bring you up to speed, dp-style! DP came into inception a few moons ago, January 2006 to be exact! All the way back then, we burst onto the scene and coaches, players and parents everywhere were thankful…all of a sudden SC high school baseball was getting personal attention…noticed and scouting breakdown was being giving to on-field accomplishments away from the usual local publications. This is where it becomes personal. Awesome contacts and great friends helped vault DP onto a new level! Most reading this now will never understand. Essentially there was a time when prep baseball coverage was minimal…there was a time that parental emails were thankful in that someone rolled through their facility…there was a time before social media, shocker! For what it is worth, many of our emails these days surround why we did not see a given team a half dozen times! Sixteen spring seasons ago when we emerged, folks were so pleased to have us at their game and excited about this new DP thing… Players and most parents now have never known a time before DP, and while we have raised the expectation levels of folks, coaches and scouts remember a void before Diamond Prospects existed. Through the work of an awesome staff, God’s blessing of our goals and plenty of help along the way, it’s very satisfying from my view to know that we have positively affected the landscape of high school baseball and recruiting in this state. We firmly believe that baseball in South Carolina has been advanced since 2006 through the work of so many people that helped us do our job! Our staff of very credible baseball people are deployed each spring, summer and fall to beat the bushes, hunt and fish for prospects. I remain so blessed and our state is so fortunate that we have been able to assemble such a formidable group of scouts and baaeball men to help push our great game forward.  As result of the Covid quarantining that dashed so many dreams last spring, creativity kicked in at the DP headquarters and our first podcasts Zoomed, recorded and were disburst to our loyal supporters. In all, 19 separate interviews or chats were conducted over five months. Based on the analytics, you enjoyed it and we plan to produce more material for your listening pleasure! if you missed any of them, click here to catch up. As the years have moved along, several new events were added through the great ideas of many different people. Our 15th Pro Day was a couple of weeks ago and quickly became a kick-off of the high school baseball season for players, but also the scores of pro scouts that flock to Columbia each January to get an early peak at the top prospects across South Carolina. This year we named the event after the late Hall of Fame scout Lon Joyce. In the previous 14 Pro Day’s, 178 participants have gone on to play professional baseball…which explains why nearly all 30 MLB clubs are represented most winters, averaging more than 90 scouts the past ten years! Pro Day has become a DP staff favorite over the years with all of the high rollers present to see a grouping of prospects that possess tools-galore. Added note, 61% of attendees have been drafted over the years.  The Palmetto Games is an event that has been the most identifyable that we host. It has become the all-star game in our state for the top underclassmen hailing from every corner of South Carolina, it is also a scouting bonanza. The University of South Carolina AD, and then Head Coach Ray Tanner, was instrumental in getting this marquee weekend off the ground back in 2008 and we have never looked back. USC had been our gracious venue each summer for scouts and college coaches to lock in on 120+ players, both committed and uncommitted, as premier prospects go toe-to-toe with the best-of-the-best that the Palmetto State has to offer. Due to Covid reasons, we moved the 2020 Palmetto games to Riley Park in Sumter to celebrate the 13th anniversary. Yankee icon, 1960 World series MVP and Sumter’s own Bobby Richardson spoke to the participants and patrons before the first pitch, such a cool moment and pleasant surprise! In 2009, DP partnered Dynamic Baseball for our first South Atlantic Border Battle played at The College of …

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