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Crew sees early results from '09 Draftees

Crew sees early results from '09 Draftees

With the 2009 season and Arizona Fall League (where several 2009 draftees got their first taste of pro ball) in the books, we take a look at the early results of each club's '09 Draft class: how their top picks did; late-round picks that fared well; which picks are likely to move up the ladder quickest; and which picks clubs were unable to sign.


NL East
ATL | FLA | NYM | PHI | WAS

AL East
BAL | BOS | NYY | TB | TOR

NL Central
CHC | CIN | HOU | MIL | PIT | STL

AL Central
CWS | CLE | DET | KC | MIN

NL West
ARI | COL | LAD | SD | SF

AL West
LAA | OAK | SEA | TEX

Since the Brewers have become well-known of late for their quantity and quality of upper-level hitters, they've focused a little more this spring on the acquisition of polished pitching to add to the fold, using two of their three first and supplemental first-round picks on a pair of highly-regarded college arms in Indiana's Eric Arnett and Kennesaw State's Kyle Heckathorn. Both signed quickly and got their pro careers under way at short-season Helena.

It took a little longer to ink their third first-round pick (and their second pick overall), speedy Tennessee outfielder Kentrail Davis, so he will make his pro debut in 2010.

Overall, out of 53 picks over the three-day event, Milwaukee signed 32, including their first 23 picks. Their top 20 showed a fine balance with 10 pitchers and 10 hitters, and they appeared to be going the fast-track route by taking 16 college or junior college products within that first 20.

2009 DRAFT RECAP

Top five picks

1. Eric Arnett, RHP: With the 26th pick overall, the Brewers took the polished right-hander, who became just the second first-round pick out of Indiana University. They brought him along slowly as he worked on consistency and learning to repeat his delivery. Armed with a sinking fastball that can clock anywhere from high 80s into low-mid-90s, as well as a slider with plus potential, he posted a 4.41 ERA in 14 games at Helena, striking out 35 in 34 2/3 innings.

1S. Kentrail Davis, OF: The 39th overall pick was a late sophomore sign out of Tennessee and has yet to make his pro debut. A great athlete with a "fireplug" build at 5-foot-9 and 200 pounds, the left-handed hitter has a quick bat and good speed along with raw power potential and is a fine athlete.

1S. Kyle Heckathorn, RHP: Taken with the 47th pick, Heckathorn is a big guy with a heavy fastball in the mid 90s, which has peaked at 98. His best pitch could make him a late-innings guy if he doesn't add more of an arsenal, but he might be a good fit for that role. At 6-foot-6 and 225 pounds, he posted a 6.04 ERA in a brief six-game stint at Helena, walking four and striking out 15 batters in 22 1/3 innings.

2. Max Walla, OF: Walla was drafted out of high school in New Mexico and hit .201 in 32 games in the Arizona League in his debut. He has raw power, a solid bat and good makeup.

2. Cameron Garfield, C: The Brewers had back-to-back picks at Nos. 73-74, which they used on Walla and Garfield, the latter a high schooler from California who has all the tools but is still working on putting them together. He'll get his reps with no rush in an organization deep in catching as he works on his mechanics. An ankle injury slowed him during his senior year, but he's a good catch-and-throw guy and one of the best defensive players in the Brewers' draft class. He hit .248 with four homers and 21 RBIs at Helena.

Best of the rest

Speedy SS Joshua Prince (3) out of Tulane swiped 26 bases in just 36 games at Helena, leading the league, and finished with 38 steals between Helena and Class A Wisconsin, good for fourth in the organization. He had led Division I with 48 steals before the Draft. ... OF D'Vontrey Richardson (5) signed too late to play, but the star quarterback out of Florida State has great speed and athleticism and raw power. ... OF Khris Davis (7) out of Cal State-Fullerton is the son of longtime scout Rodney Davis and hit .237 with two homers in the Arizona League. ... OF Chadwin Stang (8) is another speedster. Drafted out of community college in Texas, he hails from western Canada. ... LHP Jon Pokorny (9) out of Kent State had a 3.38 ERA in 16 games at Helena, striking out 43 in 40 innings. ... Power-hitting 1B Sean Halton (13) out of Lewis-Clark State led the organization with a .340 average at Helena, adding six homers and 43 RBIs. Fast Risers

Obviously, the top trinity of Arnett, Davis and Heckathorn will be fast-tracked. Also keep an eye on the shortstop Joshua Prince to speed his way up the ladder. Later picks who could move quickly if 2009 is any evidence, would be second baseman Mike Browstein (14) and Michael Fiers (22) who raced through the system in 2009.

Unsigned

With 32 of their 53 picks signed, including the first 23, there weren't many that got away. SS Brian Vigo-Suarez (21), the first unsigned pick, was a Texas high school star who will play at Navarro College. Right-hander Austin Pressley (23) was a high school pick from Ohio who heads to a local community college and will try his luck again in 2010. LHP Lex Rutledge (26) fell because of signability and headed, as expected, to Samford University.

Lisa Winston is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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