Every major league draft comes with debate: should a team focus on polished college players? Or should they go with the raw talent of high school players?
Neither is necessarily right.
Neither is necessarily wrong.
Plenty of major league all-stars have come from each method.
But if there were a poster child for why you take a college player, Indians prospect Drew Pomeranz may just be it. His confidence and maturity during Monday night’s news conference at Canal Park were impressive.
The 6-foot-5, 230-pound left-hander never once looked uncomfortable or struggled with an answer as a small group of reporters asked him numerous questions.
He even stuck around for a few extra minutes to chat after the sound recorders and television cameras were put away.
He was calm and collected.
Obviously, it isn’t his first experience with the media.
But, his comfort level with it all was still impressive and refreshing.
When asked if he was nervous at all for his first Double-A start Friday night, he shrugged, with a “no never” type demeanor, and said it was just another baseball game.
He also raved about how great of a choice it was for him to go to college instead of signing with the Texas Rangers out of high school. The Rangers drafted Pomeranz in the 12th round of the 2007 draft and he said he was “dead-red” on wanting to sign.
The financial parameters came close, but didn’t add up at the time. So, he went to Ole Miss instead and now calls that decision the “best thing that ever happened to me.”
Pomeranz talked about how important it was for him to go to college and “grow up.”
He now encourages every baseball player (with the choice) to go to college, unless they are looking at a ridiculous signing bonus.
Who knows where Pomeranz would be now if he would have signed with the Rangers out of high school.
He could already be in the majors.
Or he could have struggled as an 18-year-old professional baseball player.
But one thing is sure now, at 22 years old he is better equipped to sustain success at the professional level, which is allowing the window for possible failure to diminish with each successful start and each promotion to a new level. He is already in Double-A during his first professional season.
Read into this however you want…
The Arizona Diamondbacks had two scouts at Monday night’s game against Altoona (Pirates Double A). The trade deadline (July 31) about two weeks away.
Of course, a lot of scouts come to games regardless. And even more when the trade deadline approaches. The Orioles and Phillies were both represented Monday too. That was all the teams I was aware of, but I am sure more were present.
As far as the Diamondbacks are concerned, it could have been routine scouting (most likely), or they could have been scoping certain players on either of the rosters for a potential trade.
Hey, the Pittsburgh Pirates are in the thick of a race, too.