At Worst He'll Be Scott Rolen
MetsDaily.com recently did an interview with John Sickels. When they were discussing David Wright, John had said that barring injuries, David Wight should be Scott Rolen at worst. Ummm....I'll take that. They also briefly went over Milledge, Humber, Petit, and Gaby Hernandez. Basically he said Milledge is the real deal. He's got the speed and glove to play center, the arm to play right, the ability to hit for average and power, and ability to swipe bases. He also expects his plate discipline to improve which is good to hear as well. He actually rated Petit higher than Milledge in his book and said that he expects him to help out much sooner. As far as Humber, he said he is not in the Mark Prior category (but who is?), but projects to be very solid #2. He also stated that his fastball comes in faster than it seems due to his delivery. The good news is his fastball registers the mid 90's on the gun so the thing must look like it is on fire coming to the plate. He also pointed out that Humber has two distinct curveballs. Finally he gave a quick shout out to Gaby as a guy to watch this next season, but most of us did not need him to tell us to get this guy on our radar. Overall, it was a pretty informative interview. Check it out to hear the multitude of information I failed to pass along.
Seriously, I do not care how many important stolen bases anyone thinks he steals, the guy had a 65% stolen base percentage in 2004. The guy got thrown out by our very own Mike Piazza. Besides, Dave Roberts got thrown out once and stole the most important base of the year in the playoffs against the Yankees.
If the Rangers somehow sign Delgado—it's the best situation for him, but Florida and the Mets continue full-court presses—they might be open to talking about deals for Mark Teixeira, who homered every 12.1 at-bats in his last 90 games a year ago. They haven't approached Boras about a long-term deal while getting Michael Young and Hank Blalock committed through 2008 and '09, respectively. … Milwaukee won't discuss a multiyear contract with ace Ben Sheets until he throws in spring training. Sheets had back surgery after throwing 237 innings last season.
I do apologize for posting something having to do with a second rate sport for people to lazy to watch their team play more than one a week, but the draft is always interesting. It is of interest to me especially since I'm a lowly Dolphins fan and they own the second pick. Here you go, Mel Kiper's mock draft for those of you who do not have ESPN Insider....
1. San Francisco 49ers: Alex Smith (jr.), QB, Utah
A smart player who will pick up an NFL system quickly, Smith has good size, is mobile enough to hurt teams with his running ability and is also an efficient passer who can make all the necessary throws.
2. Miami Dolphins: Cedric Benson, RB, Texas
A strong, tough runner with good speed for his size, Benson would help fill the void left by the retirement of Ricky Williams. But there is speculation the Dolphins will attempt to fill their running back need through trade, perhaps for Buffalo's Travis Henry, so stay tuned.
3. Cleveland Browns: Aaron Rodgers (jr.), QB, California
Rodgers is a smart, accurate passer with a quick release. His arm strength is adequate and he is a better prospect at this point in his career than former Cal QB Kyle Boller, now the starter for the Baltimore Ravens.
4. Chicago Bears: Ronnie Brown, RB, Auburn
Perhaps the most complete back in the draft, Brown can carry or catch the ball with equal skill. He has size, instincts and quickness that allowed him to put up excellent numbers at the college level.
5. Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Carnell Wiliams, RB, Auburn
A creative, deceptive runner with tremendous natural skills. Williams can get tough yards inside despite lacking ideal size, a point illustrated by his 29 rushing TDs over the last two years.
6. Tennessee Titans: Adam Jones, CB, West Virginia
A good cover man who will also contribute as a kick returner, Jones has very good closing speed and is a willing tackler in run support. That may be his most important quality with the NFL hurting pass defenses by focusing on downfield infractions by defensive backs.
7. Oakland Raiders: Dan Cody, DE, Oklahoma
A fiery, intense player who always goes all-out, Cody is similar to former NFL standout Kevin Greene in his ability to play on his feet as an outside linebacker, or in a three-point stance as a defensive end.
8. Arizona Cardinals: Travis Johnson, DT, Florida State
Johnson improved his stock immensely this year. He ties up offensive linemen and is able to gain penetration against the run as well as collapse the pocket in passing situations.
9. Washington Redskins: Braylon Edwards, WR, Michigan
Edwards has the size, speed and athleticism to take over games, and he did that several times in 2004. He also significantly cut down on dropped passes and concentration lapses this past season, pushing his stock even higher.
10. Detroit Lions: Heath Miller (jr.), TE, Virginia
A tremendous pass receiver and a willing blocker along the line, Miller would give quarterback Joey Harrington another weapon to complement his wide receivers. He'll also be a help to running back Kevin Jones in the rushing attack.
11. Dallas Cowboys: Shawne Merriman (jr.), DE/OLB, Maryland
A workout warrior with incredible physical skills, Merriman would be an ideal end/linebacker combo in a 3-4 scheme.
12. San Diego Chargers (from NYG): Derrick Johnson, OLB, Texas
Has the speed and strength to chase ballcarriers from sideline to sideline and make things happen when he gets to the ball.
13. Houston Texans: Mike Williams (jr.), WR, USC
Williams did not play in 2004 but dominated the college game for two seasons while at USC. His 6-foot-5, 230-pound frame gives him a big advantage over defensive backs, and he would make a perfect complement to young standout receiver Andre Johnson.
14. Carolina Panthers: Jammal Brown, OT, Oklahoma
Brown's long arms, good feet and balance allow him to engage defenders easily and move them off the ball or away from the quarterback.
15. Kansas City Chiefs: Antrel Rolle, CB, Miami
The Chiefs likely will dedicate most of their draft to defense, and Rolle is a good start. He has the cover skills to shut down wide receivers and also gives up his body against the run.
16. New Orleans Saints: Thomas Davis (jr.), OLB, Georgia
A punishing tackler who played safety in college, Davis has the size and speed to move into the front seven and make an impact at the pro level.
17. Cincinnati Bengals: Erasmus James, DE, Wisconsin
A force along the line of scrimmage, James can play the run, rush the passer and command double-team blocks. There are some durability questions, though, after he missed parts of the last two seasons with injury.
18. Minnesota Vikings: Shaun Cody, DL, USC
A versatile lineman who can play end or tackle, Cody would be a great fit for a Vikings team that has struggled at times along the defensive front.
19. St. Louis Rams: David Pollack, DE, Georgia
Pollack plays with tremendous intensity and his motor does not stop. He makes up for a lack of size with good initial quickness and great closing speed.
21. Jacksonville Jaguars: Alex Barron, OT, Florida State
Barron is equally adept in the passing and running games and has light feet for a player his size.
23. Seattle Seahawks: Darryl Blackstock (jr.), OLB, Virginia
Blackstock is a solid all-around talent who shows flashes of greatness and has tremendous natural physical skills.
24. Green Bay Packers: Channing Crowder (so.), MLB, Florida
A tremendously productive player who adapted quickly to the collegiate game, Crowder has the ideal physical skills for a man in the middle.
26. Denver Broncos: Matt Roth, DE, Iowa
Roth is similar to David Pollack: undersized with a great motor and intensity. Roth was productive during his senior year and has good physical ability.
26. New York Jets: Carlos Rogers, CB, Auburn
A consistent, durable corner who can cover and support the run, Rogers has played against some of the best talent in the nation during his career.
27. Atlanta Falcons: Brandon Browner (so.), CB, Oregon State
A consistent cover man with good size, Browner would make a nice complement to Atlanta's top pick last year, CB DeAngelo Hall.
28. San Diego Chargers: Roscoe Parrish (jr.), WR, Miami
Parrish has speed and would be a good option to round out a receiving corps bolstered by the addition of WR Keenan McCardell and the emergence of TE Antonio Gates.
29. Indianapolis Colts: Bryant McFadden, CB, Florida State
Did not intercept many passes, but that's because teams respected his ability and avoided his side of the field. McFadden has the size to match up with big receivers.
30. New England Patriots: Justin Miller (jr.), CB, Clemson
A good fit for a team thin in the secondary this season.
31. Philadelphia Eagles: Justin Tuck (jr.), DE, Notre Dame
Good size and strength. Would be an asset for a team that thrives on pressuring the quarterback.