Dodgers Draft - Day One Recap

Aaron Miller, via Baylor

Here are some notes on the Dodgers' first four picks of the 2009 draft:

36) Aaron Miller, LHP (Baylor)

Rated as the 8th-best left-handed pitcher in the draft by Baseball America, Miller was a two-way player at Baylor.  Said Dodger Assistant General Manager of Scouting Logan White:

Aaron is a physical athlete who has had a limited amount of time on the mound.  With the help of our player development staff, we see a bright future for him as a left-handed pitcher in the Erik Bedard mold.  He is a terrific competitor and a first-class person with great makeup.

Keith Law of ESPN wasn't as high on the pick:

He doesn't have great physical projection and may not have the velocity to work as a starter in pro ball. But as a two-pitch reliever with a good breaking ball, he's a good third-round value.

Ken Gurnick noted Miller is a FOK (Friend of Kershaw):

Miller, a friend of Dodgers starter Clayton Kershaw from their Texas high-school days, worked out for the club at Dodger Stadium on Monday to seal the deal and indicated he will be a quick sign because he wants to "get innings under my belt."

56) Blake Smith, OF (Cal)

Another two-way player, the Dodgers tabbed Smith as an outfielder.  From Jonathan Okanes of InsideBayArea.com:

Smith was considered a prospect both as a pitcher and outfielder. When it was announced the Dodgers had selected him, he was labeled as a pitcher on the broadcast by the MLB Network. Smith said he received a phone call from the team's area scout a few minutes later informing him they wanted him as an outfielder.

"This is higher than I thought I would go as a hitter," Smith said. "I was not expecting it at all. You never know what's going to happen. If it doesn't work out for me hitting, at least I have the possibility of getting back on the mound. I have a backup plan, which a lot of people can't really say."

65) Garrett Gould, RHP (Maize HS, Kansas)

Gould was considered a first-round talent, but slipped in part because he has committed to play next season for Wichita State.  Law noted Gould has a good fastball with a downhill plane and a power curve, although he also has some delivery issues.  Gould told Bryan Holmgren of KWCH-TV in Kansas:

"It's always been my dream growing up. I think it's every kid who's played baseball's dream to play in the Major Leagues." he said. "Now that it's here it's definitely exciting to finally get to see all of my hard work pay off."

It has been rumored that Gould is seeking $1.1 million bonus to sign with the Dodgers, even though Gould has said those reports were inaccurate.  Whatever the figure is, the Dodgers have avoided such a bonus in the last few years, with Alex White in 2006 and Kyle Blair in 2007, so a Gould signing could indicate a philosophical shift in the organization.

96) Brett Wallach, RHP (Orange Coast College)

Wallach, the son of former Dodger third baseman and current Albuquerque manager Tim Wallach, was analyzed thusly by Tot Holmes of Scout.com:

Brett possesses a near-perfect frame for a pitcher; at 6-foot-3 he's lanky and very projectable. His fastball ranges from 88-89 mph, and his solid body promises more velocity in the future.

Wallach features a slurve with a late break. His changeup is his best pitch, showing remarkable drop while thrown with the same arm speed as his fastball.

He has a smooth delivery and most scouts feel he is a complete package. He combines a big league lineage, projectable frame, smooth delivery, and an excellent feel for three pitches.

The MLB draft resumes Wednesday at 8:30am, with round four.  Click here to listen.

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