Third Round (91st selection)
Niko Vasquez, SS, Durango HS
Out of the same high school that produced Quad Cities River Bandit Tommy Pham. A highly touted prep shortstop, Vasquez fell on draft boards due to him being academically ineligible at the beginning of the season. Committed to Oregon State, he is still considered signable. Always highly touted for his tools, he started putting things together last summer at the Area Code games. Scouts like his strong hands and outstanding bat speed. With a short, compact stroke, Vasquez is capable of producing quite a bit of pop for a guy his size. He is also capable of hitting high velocity pitching.
Vasquez is a below average runner but still shows at least average range at short. He has soft, dependable hands and one of the best infield arms in the draft. Most believe he will have to move off the position and profiles as a third baseman or possibly second base.
Scouting projections have him as a guy that could hit in the .260-.280 range with 20 plus home runs.
Fourth Round Pick (125th overall)
Scott Gorgen, RHP, UC Irvine
Half of the storied College twins, his brother Matt is the closer at California. After his first college season he was a second team Freshman All-American. During his sophomore campaign he got to compete in the College World Series.
His fastball sits 88-92 with late life, good sink, and he controls it with excellent command. Gorgen possess an above average changeup that has a late drop, looking almost like a forkball. It is considered to be one of the best in the draft class. His curveball still needs work but has shown some promise. Baseball America rated him as having the second best command among the college pitchers.
In 2008, the 5'10" junior is 11-3 with a 2.31 ERA 115 strikeouts in 109 innings. Opponents are only hitting .175 against him. Gorgen was named the Big West tri-Pitcher of the Year along with being a Louisville Slugger First Team All-American.
In 2007, his 13 wins were tied for third best in the country. Played for Team USA that summer highlighted by eight strikeouts in 4.2 innings against Russia.
With a Jess Todd like body, he also has an agressive mentality as he goes right after hitters. He has shown that he is durable as well logging over 300 innings in college.
Another plus, Gorgen's make up is supposed to be off the charts.
Fifth Round Pick (155th overall)
Jermaine Curtis, 3B, UCLA
The last couple seasons he has really underachieved but so has the whole Bruins' program. A third baseman at UCLA, he does project as a second baseman in the big leagues. He has average tools across the board but plays up with his all out effort.
In 2008, Curtis played in all 60 Bruins games hitting .306, .357 in Pac-10 play. Stepped up in regional play hitting .421 to earn a spot on the all-tournament team.
Last summer, Curtis played in 33 games on the Cape hitting .295/.401/.495 with three home runs and 24 RBIs.
In the 2007 post season, he was named the Regional MVP after hitting after hitting .500 in the tournament. That postseason the Californian hit .421.
Sixth Round Pick (185th Overall)
Eric Fornataro RHP Miami Dade JC
In 78 innings this season, Fornataro struck out 77 hitters compared to 26 walks. The 6'1" right-hander allowed only 60 hits and posted a 2.87 ERA. In 2007, he attended Pensacola Junior College.
Publisher's note: Dustin Mattison will be appearing on KGIR, ESPN 1220 & 1470 in Cape Girardeau, Missouri, Friday morning to discuss the St. Louis Cardinals' draft results from Day 1. He will be appearing at 9:40 AM CDT and for those outside the Southeast Missouri listening area, Dustin can be heard on the internet at www.kgir.com
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