Phils Pick RHP Kevin Gowdy, Plus Day 1 Wrap and Sentimental Rambling
With the first pick in round two, and 42nd overall on the night, The Phillies picked RHP Kevin Gowdy from Santa Barbara High School in (wait for it) Santa Barbara, CA. He’ll be an overslot sign to buy out his commitment to UCLA, and he’s been ranked #24 overall by Keith Law, #33 by John Sickels at Minorleagueball.com, #39 by Baseball America, #37 by MLB.com. Sickels is right at the average, and pick 33 this year was worth $1.9M. So probably we can start there and go up. The club likely knows what he’ll take and is ready to nab someone else tomorrow morning at 3.1 with some or all of whatever bonus money’s leftover.
I will admit to not having a ton of knowledge about Gowdy before a couple minutes prior to him being picked tonight. He’s a name I heard a couple times and filed away. But make no mistake, he’s not a name to forget. From what I have read tonight, he is a pro-ready pitcher who could move quickly through the system on his way to a mid-rotation ceiling. He’s been around the showcase circuit for a couple years, and was on the USA U-18 team.
Some Twitter reactions:
Really like the Gowdy pick. Rare combination of advanced stuff and projection.
— Christopher Crawford (@CVCrawfordBP) June 10, 2016
Love that pick. Gowdy is a loose, projectable RHP. Low-90s FB; solid CB and projectable CH; clean, easy mechanics. Overslot deal. #phillies
— CJ Wittmann (@CJWittJr) June 10, 2016
#Phillies are gonna get a personal favorite of mine in Kevin Gowdy.
— Nathan Rode (@NathanRode) June 10, 2016
From this, and what else I have read, including a nice profile and scouting piece from BA’s Hudson Belinsky, it sounds like a good FB now, plus two potential plus off-speed pitches, and room to grow into his frame, which generally implies added FB velocity is a possibility.
Combine this with the Moniak pick at #1, and you’ve got probably millions of dollars leftover to make a play for whoever is left on the board tonight. We’ll see if my prediction comes true, and an unexpected name pops up from a previously “immoveable” college commitment, (think Cavan Biggio from a few years ago), or if they’re going to land a familiar name like Cali prep RHP Jared Horn, who’s been mentioned as an overslot candidate, or prep LHP from Florida, Jesus Luzardo, who had Tommy John surgery this March.
In all, not a bad day, from my perspective. Gowdy seems like a good get, and I like Moniak plenty. They’re hopefully guys who slot into the active roster in 3-4 years when the club has been in contention for at least a year or two. We’ll see what they can pull off first thing tomorrow, and how much they leave themselves for the later rounds in the day and Rounds 11-30 on Saturday, but Klentak and Almaraz, et al, have started to fill out the next wave of talent to go along with the collection of guys sitting in extended spring training and on the Lakewood roster.
The group that you hope becomes reasonably priced everyday contributors for when you lock up your regulars to longer-term deals, or spend big money in the free agent market. Or the group that becomes the upper-level trade bait every club covets when they part with their own stars in down times. Is Mickey Moniak the Nick Williams we send out to get the Cole Hamels we need? Will Kevin Gowdy build himself into the next Zach Eflin, poised to take a step up when a starter goes down? Time will tell. The players’ work and the development staff’s tutelage can make a young man a part of a championship payoff. That’s why these players are so important. And that’s why I follow prospects. And that’s why I follow the draft.
Would have been better if Mike Schmidt had said that last part with a fancy quote thrown in and some clips of his playing days and Harry Kalas and oh dear, that “18 years ago” bit got me earlier…I’m gonna go to bed before I get all weepy again.