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Cleveland Indians

Baseball America's Tribe draft card

By sstorm Published: October 28, 2010

In the last post, we looked at Baseball America's published thoughts on the Indians overall 2010 draft, which the magazine rated as the best in baseball. In this post, we'll take a look at what BA's Jim Callis thinks specifically of the 27 players the Indians selected and signed.

CALLIS' QUICK TAKE - The rebuilding Indians nearly doubled their bonus spending in 2010 ($9.4 million) from 2009 ($4.9 million). They handed seven-figure bonuses to Pomeranz, Washington, Wolters and Lavisky and gave over-slot deals to six other players.

BEST PURE HITTER - OF and second-round pick LeVon Washington's speed attracts the most attention, but his bat may wind up being his best tool. He has drawn comparisons to Carl Crawford, and he's a more advanced hitter than Crawford was at the same stage of his career.

BEST POWER HITTER - 1B/OF Chase Burnette, who hit nine regular-season homers and two more in the low Class-A Midwest League playoffs, has the most present power. C Alex Lavisky (eighth round), who signed for $1 million, may have as much raw power.

FASTEST RUNNER - Washington has plus-plus speed, but he's not the 80 runner he was on the 20-80 scouting scale when the Rays made him a first-round pick in 2009. His game speed also plays down another notch, too. OF Henry Dunn (50th round) is also a well above-average runner.

BEST DEFENSIVE PLAYER - SS/3B Nick Bartolone (Sixth-round) has good range, hands and arm strength. SS Tony Wolters (third-rtound), Lavisky and OF Tyler Holt (10th round) are up-the-middle defenders with fine instincts.

BEST FASTBALL - LHP Drew Pomeranz (first round) has a 90-95 mph fastball, and it's not even his best pitch. RHP Tony Dischler (23rd round), the ace of Louisiana State-Eunice's Divison II national juco champions, also can pop a 95. So could RHP Robbie Aviles (seventh round), before he injured his elbow on the eve of the draft and required Tommy John surgery.

BEST SECONDARY PITCH - Pomeranz's curveball has hard 12-to-6 break and is a strikeout pitch.

BEST PRO DEBUT - Burnette was Lake County's best postseason hitter, leading the Captains to the MWL title.

BEST ATHLETE - Washington. The Indians targeted athletes and got several other intriguing ones, including OFs Hunter Jones (11th round), Mark Brown (19th round), Marcus Bradley (49th round) and Dunn.

MOST INTRIGUING BACKGROUND - RHP Cole Cook's (fifth round) father Peter MacKenzie has acted in dozens of movies and television shows, including "It's Complicated" with Meryl Streep. Jones (Tracy), 2B Logan Thompson (33rd round, Robbie) and 2B Aaron Fields (42nd round, Bruce) are all sons of former big leaguers.

CLOSEST TO THE MAJORS - Pomeranz will follow the same path as Cleveland 2009 first-rounder Alex White, beginning his pro career in high Class A with the opportunity to move quickly to Double-A.

BEST LATE-ROUND PICK - Dischler had the talent to go in the first five rounds, and he was a relatively easy over-slot sign, agreeing to a $255,000 bonus. RHP Michael Goodnight (13th round) is inconsistent, but at his best he has a plus fastball and slider.

THE ONE WHO GOT AWAY - The Indians signed their first 14 choices but would have liked to get RHP Burch Smith (20th round), whom they also drafted in the 49th round in 2009. Smith, who has a 90-93 mph fastball and a potential plus slider, transferred from Howard (Texas) JC to Oklahoma.

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