Dodgers 2018 Draft: Highlights from Day 2

John-Rooney
(Photo Credit: d1baseball.com)

The Dodgers on Tuesday announced their eight selections from the second day of the 2018 Draft, picking Hofstra University left-handed pitcher John Rooney (third round), Clear Falls (TX) High School right-hander Braydon Fisher (fourth round), University of Louisville infielder Devin Mann (fifth round), University of New Orleans left-hander Bryan Warzek (sixth round), Sacramento State outfielder James Outman (seventh round), University of Kentucky second baseman Luke Heyer (eighth round), North Carolina State University outfielder Josh McLain (ninth round) and University of Florida infielder Deacon Liput (10th round).

Los Angeles drafted eight of its first 10 players from the college ranks and through 10 selections they have taken five pitchers, three infielders and two outfielders.

The Dodgers started the second day of the draft by selecting Hofstra University left-handed pitcher John Rooney in the third round. In his junior season, the Schaghticoke, New York native finished 8-2 with a 1.23 ERA (13 ER/95.0 IP) in 13 starts and struck out 108 batters against just 27 walks, including three complete games. Following the 2018 season for the Pride, he was voted a Second Team All-America selection by Baseball America, Colonial Athletic Association Pitcher of the Year, semifinalist for National Pitcher of the Year and ECAC Pitcher of the Year. Rooney is Hofstra’s single season and career leader in strikeouts with 108 and 271, respectively, and is the first player from Hofstra to get selected before the 10th round since 2013.

Los Angeles nabbed its first position player with the 164th pick (fifth round), choosing infielder Devin Mann, a junior out of the University of Louisville. The 6-3, 205-pounder started all 64 games for the Cardinals in 2018 primarily playing second base and shortstop, batting .303 with 65 runs, 17 doubles, four triples, seven home runs, 52 RBI and 15 stolen bases. Over his three seasons with Louisville, he slashed .288/.408/.458 with 37 doubles, six triples, 15 homers and 113 RBI in 167 games. In 2016, he was named to the ACC All-Freshman Team after starting in 19 of his 39 games played.

The Dodgers then selected two more pitchers, picking their second high school player in the fourth round in right-handed pitcher Braydon Fisher from Clear Falls (TX) High School and left-handed pitcher Bryan Warzek from the University of New Orleans (sixth round). During his senior season, the 6-4, 180-pound Fisher pitched 66.2 innings, while posting a 1.62 ERA and striking out 102 batters against 22 walks. The 17-year-old, who is currently committed to Lamar University, holds records for no hitters, lowest ERA and most hits at Clear Falls High School. Warzek, a 21-year-old junior, went 5-2 in 14 starts this season for the Privateers with a 2.82 ERA (30 ER/95.2 IP) and struck out 127 against 41 walks. Warzek earned first-team All-Southland Conference honors his sophomore and junior seasons, and is the highest drafted baseball player out of the University of New Orleans since 2008.

Los Angeles also nabbed collegiate position players James Outman, a junior outfielder from Sacramento State in the seventh round and infielder Luke Heyer from the University of Kentucky in the eighth round. Outman appeared in 60 games for the Hornets, hitting .253 with 43 runs, 15 doubles, three triples, 11 home runs, 40 RBI and 12 stolen bases along with a .363 on-base percentage. Throughout his three-year collegiate career, Outman posted a .249 average with 35 doubles, 23 home runs and 99 RBI. He was selected to the All-WAC Tournament Team for his work during his sophomore season and was named the Summer Collegiate Player of the Year by Perfect Game in 2017. Heyer started his collegiate career at College of Central Florida before transferring to the University of Kentucky. The senior from Lithia, Florida is a versatile defender, seeing time at second base, third base and in the outfield during his time with the Wildcats. He hit .348 this season with 17 doubles, 18 home runs and 57 RBI in 55 games and was voted to the SEC First-Year Academic Honor Roll in 2017 as a junior.

With the final two picks on Day 2 of the First-Year Player Draft, the Dodgers picked up senior outfielder Josh McClain from North Carolina State University in the ninth round and junior infielder Deacon Liput from University of Florida in the 10th round. Both McClain and Liput were selected by Los Angeles in the 2017 First-Year Player Draft in the 14th and 29th round, respectively, but did not sign. McClain started 60 games for the Wolfpack this season, hitting .344 with 51 runs and four home runs. He was also named to First-Team All-ACC performer in 2017 with the Wolfpack. Liput was voted to the 2016 SEC All-Freshman Team, 2017 SEC All-Defensive Team and was announced as a finalist for this year’s Brooks Wallace Award, which is presented to college baseball’s top shortstop. In 2018, the Oviedo, Florida native started 45 games at shortstop, committing only two errors, and hit .286 with 43 runs, 13 doubles, eight home runs and 36 RBI.

The draft concludes Wednesday with rounds 11-30 starting at 9:00 a.m. Los Angeles time.

(Lauren Douglas furnished the information provided in this report)

 

 

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5 thoughts on “Dodgers 2018 Draft: Highlights from Day 2

  1. I think the Dodgers should give free season tickets to the first person who can correctly pronounce the name of the city that Rooney comes from.

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  2. Out of that bunch the Dodgers drafted yesterday, the ones that caught my eye were John Rooney, Braydon Fisher, Devin Mann, and Deacon Liput.

    Rooney is an interesting story. He only started pitching full-time when he entered college (was primarily a basketball player in high school until he was successfully swayed in pursuing a baseball career instead, sounds like how Matt Kemp initially got into it as well), so there might still be some untapped potential left in that arm of his. I honestly do wonder how much his overall stuff develops even further if the Dodgers have him enroll in that Driveline program (along with last year’s 2nd round pick Morgan Cooper) I keep hearing so much about of late.

    Braydon Fisher is another one of those “throwback” Logan White picks in which the extremely projectable H.S. pitcher is taken in the early rounds. Not sure if the front office can lure him away from his college commitment, but if they do that would a nice acquisition indeed. Heard he’s quite athletic, too. Bodes extremely well for his future on the mound.

    I like Devin Mann a lot for what he brings to the table: good size and athleticism for a middle infielder, a natural feel for hitting, and loads of defensive versatility. If the coaching staff finally gets his hands on him and helps him find his true swing path like they previously did with Chris Taylor and most recently INF/OF prospect Drew Jackson, he could wind up being a legit sleeper pick for them in due time.

    Liput might be the most polarizing one on this list, though. For all his notable tools and baseball savvy, the fact that he was suspended for an undisclosed off-field incident prior to this season bears some room for pause. Had to overcome a terribly slow start after missing his first 14 games, but finally did so in dramatic fashion (much to his own benefit as much as his team’s, for that matter). I also noticed this is the second time he was drafted by the Dodgers so apparently they’ve been on to him for some time now and like what they’ve seen out of him from a purely baseball standpoint. If he’s past his personal issues, he could be a really good value pick for a 10th round signing as I strong feel he probably would’ve went several rounds higher if not for that unfortunate suspension.

    So far, this draft was nowhere near as deep and fertile as the one the Dodgers had two years ago (STILL buzzed at the amount of high-end talent they were able sign in that one, my goodness…). However, if they’re able to lock down those first two picks they took on the first day as well as the ones I’ve already mentioned here at the very least then I’ll consider it another solid showing by the front office for the second straight year. As always, good work Dennis!

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  3. Manuel, with such a small signing pool, do you think they will be able to sign most of these guys? Will any of these guys be difficult to sign?

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    1. I think the one signing from Day 2 that might be a slight challenge to reel in is Fisher because of his college commitment as well as where he was drafted (4th round tends to be borderline in that sense; 2nd round Grove pick could very well determine how much Fisher would get in terms of bonus money), but the rest of the ones on that list shouldn’t be too much of a problem to lock down. I also noticed they drafted some notable names on the last day like hard-throwing JUCO reliever Trey Dillard in the 16th round and power-hitting college OF Niko Hulsizer in the 18th. My guess is if, say, Fisher opts to honor his college commitment instead then one of those two players that were drafted way late gets a crack at that money and signs at the last minute. Hopefully, neither of these players ends up holding out for too long because the current Dodger farms system is pretty loaded as it is already, not much room to go around these days compared to years past, lol…

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