Bobby Heck conducted a chat yesterday about the draft. Allow me to break it down for you, so you don't have to read the Chronicle. Also note that Bobby Heck let it slip they signed 3rd-Round Comp pick Jonathan Meyer.
On the Astros' best steal of the draft:
Probably Dallas Keuchel was a guy we thought dollar for dollar, although we haven't signed him yet because he's in the College World Series. He is a college lefthander in the SEC who had success, and you usually don't find him in the seventh round.
29th rounder Garen Wright a center fielder from Putnam High in Oklahoma. He was a multi-sport athlete in high school. His size and athleticism are very intriguing. He turned down multiple Division I basketball scholarship offers. He also turned down multiple Division I baseball scholarships. He wanted to get out and play. He's a not a fast-track guy. He's more of a developmental players. We're excited about his tools and upside. It's fair to say he wasn't treated like a 29th rounder.
On 2nd-round pick Tanner Bushue:
He's an athletic kid with a natural athletic and simple delivery and good arm action. We project him to have a plus fastball and a plus curveball and to be a good strike thrower. We're comfortable at this time saying he projects as a major league starter.
On Jason Castro's progress:
He's been in Double-A for a week now and is hitting over .350. There's still more work for him to be major-league ready, but just a year ago he was in Omaha with Stanford at the College World Series and now he's halfway to the big leagues. That says a lot about the progress he's made.
On how the Astros assign players to the Single-A level:
Tri-City is geared mostly toward college players. The NY-Penn league is mostly toward college players. The Appalachian League is geared to second-year profesional players, advanced high school draft picks and junior college draft picks. The Gulf Coast League is more a first-year landing spot for players from Latin America as well as some of your high school draft who may need additional acclimation to profesional baseball.
On 4th Round pick Telvin Nash:
We see Nash as a potential power hitter with 30-plus home run potential. He was another two-sport athlete from the Atlanta Area. Griffin High school, the same high school Tim Beckham, who was the first pick in the 2008 draft. Telvin passed on some Division I football scholarships and needs to catch up as far as games he's missed in the falls when he played football while others were playing baseball.
On Danny Meszaros:
That's exciting for a kid that wen't from the 48th round in last year. Clarence Johns and I signed him in a Courtyard Hotel in Cape Cod. He went straight from there to Tri-City, had success there and has had continued success at Lexington and to Double A. I'm very proud of him, happy for him and happy for the Astros.
Best fastball is shared by fourth-rounder B.J. Hyatt and 17th rounder Justin Harper, both of whom throw up to 95-mph. Best curveball is Tanner Bushue, the second-round pick. Best changeup is possessed by 7th-rounder Dallas Keuchel.
On P Mark Jones:
This is a pitcher that was dug up by our area scout Everett Stull, our area scout in the mid atlantic states who is a former major league pitcher. He thinks he has a chance to be a starter down the road. He thought he'd have a 3-4 pitch mix when it was all said and done and liked the progress he made in the spring.