Signed, Sealed, and Delivered

It seems like an eternity ago that Major League Baseball held its annual draft but really it has only been a couple of months when the teams met at the MLB TV studios for the first-year player draft. After that hectic two day event the real work began.

The teams had until midnight ET August 17 in order to sign their draft picks. Any selection not signed by then, the team loses negotiating rights to the player. For high school players they are not eligible to be redrafted until after their sophomore year of college. Sophomores are not eligible to be redrafted until after they have graduated.

This has been an extremely busy time for the Arizona Diamondbacks as they had a glut of picks in the early rounds as a result of other teams signing their free agents last off-season. Arizona had 11 of the top 200 picks in this year’s draft.

General Manager Josh Byrnes and his staff have been working long hours with the scouting department to sign as many of these draft picks as possible and slotting them onto appropriate rosters.

Going into the final day of negotiation the Diamondbacks had only one player remaining to sign in of those drafted in the first 24 rounds. Seventh round pick,, third baseman Matt Helm from Chandler Arizona, was the only hold out. This was somewhat expected. Helm was slotted to be a second or third round selection but injuries this past year pushed his stock down allowing him to slip to the Diamondbacks.

Helm had made a commitment to the University of Arizona on a baseball scholarship. It would take the Diamondbacks reaching into their pocketbook to keep them from losing this draft pick to Tucson.

As the deadline approached the Diamondbacks negotiated with Helm and his family offering him the financial security necessary to make his decision easier. Helm signed just before the deadline. After physicals and the paperwork is completed Matt Helm will board a plane to Yakima Washington to begin his professional baseball career with the Yakima Bears.

Arizona Diamondbacks Signed Draft Picks – 2009
Round Name B/T Ht Wt DOB POS
1 Robert Borchering S/R 6’4” 195 10/25/1990 3B
1 Allen Pollock R/R 6’2” 200 12/05/1987 CF
1a Matthew Davidson R/R 6’2” 210 03/26/1991 3B
1a Christopher Owings R/R 5’11” 170 08/12/1991 SS
1a Michael Belfiore R/L 6’3” 220 10/03/1986 LHP
2 Eric Smith R/R 6’3” 213 10/15/1988 RHP
2 Marc Krauss L/R 6’3” 235 10/05/1987 LF
3 Keon Broxton R/R 6’0” 187 05/07/1990 3B
4 David Nick R/R 6’2” 180 02/03/1990 SS
5 Ryan Wheeler L/R 6’4” 220 07/10/1988 1B
6 Bradin Hagens R/R 6’1” 180 05/12/1989 RHP
7 Matthew Helm R/R 6’2” 205 09/01/1990 3B
8 Paul Goldschmidt R/R 6’4” 240 09/10/1987 1B
9 Robert Anderson R/R 6’1” 170 11/30/1987 RHP
10 Tyson Van Winkle R/R 6’0” 195 02/02/1988 C
11 Richard Allen R/R 6’2” 170 07/03/1991 RHP
12 Charles Brewer R/R 6’4” 205 04/07/1988 RHP
13 Patrick Schuster R/L 6’2” 165 10/30/1990 LHP
14 Brent Greer R/R 6’0” 185 10/16/1987 SS
15 David Narodowski R/R 5’10” 195 08/03/1988 OF
16 Ryan Robowski L/L 6’0” 175 02/03/1988 LHP
17 Andrew Wolcott R/R 6’6” 240 09/08/1987 RHP
18 Roidany Aguila R/R 5’10” 160 10/22/1990 C
19 Randall Hamrick R/R 6’1” 195 08/27/1986 SS
20 Adam Worthington R/R 5’10” 190 06/20/1987 RHP
21 Daniel Taylor L/L 6’0” 205 07/25/1987 LHP
22 Evan Button L/R 6’0” 195 09/05/1986 SS
23 Christopher Odegaard R/R 6’3” 215 04/17/1987 RHP
24 Marshall Gemberling R/R 6’3” 205 12/09/1986 RHP
26 Daniel Kaczrowski R/R 5’9” 170 06/17/1987 SS
27 Willie Hale R/R 6’7” 200 12/11/1985 RHP
28 Brian Budrow S/R 6’3” 220 11/12/1986 RHP
31 Keith Cantwell R/R 6’6” 215 09/09/1987 RHP
32 William Harvil L/R 6’5” 230 06/17/1987 RHP
33 Bradley Wilson R/R 6’1” 185 05/26/1987 RHP
40 Tim Sherlock L/L 6’1” 185 11/30/1986 OF
44 Zachary Varnell R/R 6’1” 200 06/25/1986 C

Overall the Diamondbacks were very successful signing each of the first 24 round picks and 32 of the 50 players drafted. It was interesting to me to see that two of the players they could not sign had ties to the Diamondbacks. Diamondbacks Area Scout Luke Wrenn’s son Taylor went unsigned. Diamondbacks announcer and former player Matt Williams son Jake also chose college over signing and will go to the University of San Diego to play baseball.

With draft picks now under contract the focus will now be one of player development as the minor league coaches attempt to mold these young ball players to reach their potential so that we hopefully will see this new crop of Arizona Diamondbacks at Chase Field within a few short years.

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