The Dodgers started off Day 3 of the 2013 MLB Draft by taking catcher Spencer Navin out of Vanderbilt University with the 334th overall pick.
Navin’s coach had this to say about him:
“Spencer may be the most talented catcher we have had in our program,” Vanderbilt coach Tim Corbin told the school’s official website. “He’s tough, durable and possesses overriding arm strength. He competes as well as anyone we have on our club. We will be very reliant on his leadership behind the plate. He is a very competitive hitter as well and a big part of our offense.”
Baseball America ranked him 398th.
A two-year starter for the Commodores, Navin has a solid 6-foot-1, 205-pound frame and has shown he can handle premium stuff from Vanderbilt’s top-flight pitching staff. His best tools are his receiving and solid-average arm strength. He makes a fair amount of contact, draws some walks and has athletic ability, with decent speed. But he probably profiles as a big league backup because of his modest hitting ability.
MLB.com profiled him as well.
The two things that stand out the most for Navin are his overall strength and his arm. The Vandy backstop is strong and durable with an above-average to plus throwing arm that can really control a running game. He’ll occasionally drive the ball because of that strength, but isn’t really a natural hitter. He is a natural leader who still needs to improve his receiving, but looks like he has the tools to do so. Navin isn’t among the top catchers in this class, but college backstops, especially ones for top programs, who show they know what they’re doing behind the plate, tend to do well, even if they profile best as a future backup.
Additionally, Minor League Ball‘s Matt Garrioch ranked him 256th.
He’s a junior, so the option of returning to school is always there.
The backup profile here would seem to be discouraging, but when you look at the Dodgers system, they could desperately use catching depth.
With the 364th pick, the team took third baseman Adam Law out of Brigham Young University. Bloodlines? You better believe it. He’s the son of Vince Law and the grandson of Vernon Law.
Adam is expected to play third for the Dodgers.
Law’s father, Vance, was also an infielder during an 11-year career from 1980-91 and was an All-Star with the Chicago Cubs in 1988. Law’s grandfather, Vernon, debuted with the Pirates in 1950 and won the 1960 Cy Young Award. The right-hander won 162 games during a 16-year career with Pittsburgh.
While Law was primarily a shortstop and second baseman with BYU, the Dodgers drafted him as a third baseman.
As a junior this season, Law led the Cougars with a .365 batting average, 76 hits, 14 stolen bases and a .440 on-base percentage. He also had 10 doubles, four triples, four home runs and 46 RBIs in 53 games with a .510 slugging percentage.
Not much information out there besides that. As for signability, he’s a junior.
Left-handed pitcher Ty Damron out of Krum High School in Texas was the Dodgers choice with the 394th selection.
Here’s some information on him via his high school coach:
Damron is a strikeout pitcher. In a state playoff game in May, the southpaw struck out 17 batters in six innings and did not allow a hit. The only baserunner he allowed came on a walk.
“He’s got an upper-80s fastball from the left side, with, I think, the frame and the potential to throw harder,” Damron’s high school coach, Ray Miller, told the Denton County Record. “He’s got the potential to be a legitimate low-90s guy from the left side.”
He’s a Texas Tech University commit.
With the 424th pick, the team selected left-hander Michael Johnson out of Dartmouth University.
Not much information on him out there, but here’s a mini-profile:
As a senior, Johnson went 7-0 with a 1.82 ERA and 47 strikeouts in 59 1/3 innings. The southpaw held opponents to a .208 batting average in nine starts and led Dartmouth to its fourth straight appearance in the Ivy League championship game.
Johnson was 8-2 with a 4.73 ERA during his first three seasons at Dartmouth, striking out 66 in 102 2/3 innings. But he improved dramatically this season and was named to the All-Ivy League First Team.
“I focused a lot more on my legs and my flexibility,” Johnson told the Boston Globe. “I felt, at times, my freshman and sophomore years, my flexibility inhibited me a bit from not getting through to my front side.”
Johnson uses a fastball, slider and changeup. He’s listed at 5-foot-11 and 185 pounds.
As a senior, signability shouldn’t be an issue.
Left-handed pitcher Billy Flamion out of Grossmont College in California was taken by the Dodgers with the 454th pick.
This season, Flamion pitched seven innings and struck out nine. But the southpaw walked six and allowed six runs on four hits. With the Ducks in 2012, Flamion struck out 12 and walked 11 in 13 innings as a freshman.
While Flamion hit .287 with two home runs, 24 RBIs and 26 runs scored in 36 games this season, the Dodgers drafted him as a pitcher.
He’s a sophomore, so he has options besides signing professionally.
With the 484th pick in the 2013 MLB Draft, the team took righty Peter Miller out of Florida State University.
He had this to say about being drafted:
“It’s exciting (to be drafted); it’s been a long journey. I am definitely excited but I’m just trying to focus on finishing this year off first before I even worry about the draft. It was a complete surprise to be selected by the Dodgers.”
Signability-wise, he’s a junior, so he could go back to school and try to increase his stock.
The 514th pick in the 2013 MLB Draft was right-handed pitcher Greg Harris out of Los Almitos High School in California. A bloodlines pick, he’s the son of Greg Harris, who played 15 years in the MLB.
Second baseman James McDonald was taken with the 544th pick out of Arizona State University.
A junior, he has the option of returning to school.
Shortstop Blake Hennessey out of Arlington Country Day High School in Florida was taken with the 574th pick. His dad, Scott Hennessey, is a scout with the Dodgers.
He has a middle infielder’s frame at 6-foot-1, 175 pounds. He’s an above-average runner but not a blazer, and his arm strength should help him stay on the left side of the diamond. He also shows present strength and gap power. His savvy and athleticism should help him get the most out of his tools, but teams may not be willing to sign him away from Oklahoma State.
Perfect Game also profiled him:
Blake Hennessey is a 2013 SS/3B with a 6-2 178 lb. frame from Ponte Vedra, FL who attends Arlington Country Day HS. Long and lean athletic build, good present strength. 6.86 runner, quick feet defensively, good range, works through the ball, good arm strength, looked solid at shortstop and very good at third base. Right handed hitter, very busy load with big leg raise trigger, loose extended swing, timing works well, gap to gap contact, has bat speed, ball comes off the barrel well. Projectable player in all areas. Good student, verbal commitment to Oklahoma State.
So why did he fall so far in the draft? Likely because he’s a strong commit to Oklahoma State University, so his signability is in doubt at this round.
Outfielder Mike Ahmed of Holy Cross University was taken with the 604th pick in the 2013 MLB Draft. His brother, Nick Ahmed, is in the Diamondbacks organization.
Here’s a profile of Mike via Holy Cross Athletics:
Ahmed concluded his junior season with another solid performance on the mound, at the plate and in the infield. Playing in 45 games making 43 starts he batted .279 with 39 hits and a career-high 28 RBIs. His four homeruns ranked second in the Patriot League and he held a 4.11 ERA over 30.2 innings pitched. During his nine appearances and six starts throughout the season, Ahmed posted a 3-4 record. Before the season Collegiate Baseball named Ahmed Patriot League Player of the Year. Ahmed was named to the first team All-Patriot League at the conclusion of the season for the second consecutive season. As a co-captain, Ahmed helped lead the team to their first ever regular season Patriot League championship title.
In his career, Ahmed has played 134 games and holds a .283 batting average with 126 hits, 93 runs, 64 RBIs and 12 homeruns. On the mound, he holds a 5-5 record over 56.0 innings in 28 appearances. He holds a 4.66 career ERA while striking out 54 batters.
A junior, he has options should he choose to not sign.