6/6 Cubs go for best fit in Draft

The Cubs had narrowed their list of candidates for the No. 2 pick overall to four: pitchers Mark Appel and Jonathan Gray, and third basemen Kris Bryant and Colin Moran. The Astros selected Appel No. 1 in the first round Thursday, and many expected the Cubs to take Gray. There is a need for pitching in the Cubs organization. Jason McLeod, head of scouting and player development said they were not going to draft because of need.

“We talked a lot about acquiring pitching and getting power pitching, and those players are out there in this draft, and they went one and three,” said McLeod of Appel and Gray, who was taken by the Rockies at No. 3. “Ultimately, we’re going to make the decisions that we feel are best for this organization both in the short and long term and Kris Bryant was the player for us when we made that pick.”

Gray had been projected by many as the No. 1 pick but that seemed to change after reports that he tested positive for the medication Adderall during baseball’s pre-Draft drug testing program. The positive test will not result in a suspension but will make Gray subject to additional follow-up testing once he begins his pro career. Adderall is banned by MLB unless a player has a valid use exemption.

McLeod said they did their homework.

“Obviously, it was something that wasn’t expected to come up,” McLeod said of the test results. “We looked pretty deep into that. Ultimately, it didn’t affect how we felt about him as a player and as a person. That really had no bearing on it, other than we had to do more due diligence on it and figure more things out. We certainly wish health and success to Jon. He was very open with us. The Rockies got themselves a very talented player.”

– Carrie Muskat

6 Comments

I do not believe for a minute that the medication was not a factor in this decision. This is an attempt to sell something I`m not buying. Read between the lines. Good pitching far outweighs offense in deciding baseball outcomes. Most knowledgeable observers will tell you good pitching will stop good hitting. Is why we should have focused on taking an outstanding hurler with our top five pick. Our future is at stake here.

It was tough passing on Gray but I am pretty excited about Bryant however considering 3B has been the black hole of late. It’s not going to be Vitters, Valbuena is not an every day answer as evidenced by the cast off Ransom getting platoon starts and it certainly isn’t Stewart….this is probably the way Theo thinks of correcting his Stewart debacle???

Many scouts feel Bryant is not a good fit at third base, joey.

Too bad. Could his hitting be SO great that Theo has him in mind as trade bait for next year’s starting staff? I am hoping Bryant will be “good enough” at 3B and get better (taking your word here as SOME scouts may think he IS a good fit at third base??) with some on the job training.
Regardless of his defensive skills as of now he would rank our best prospect at 3B wouldn’t you agree jhosk?

I`m surprised you are not projecting him for the left field slot, joey, considering your past views on the need to fill that position with a legit right handed bat. Bryant`s best fit would be first base, but since that is a non-starter, the outfield is the logical place for him.

Your son can be proud of his alert response in that matter, mamma. Hope the young man is drafted by Cubs one day. Speaking of wooden bats, I’ve heard it said the highly regarded Cape Cod summer league utilizes wooden bats. Do you know if that is true?

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