Cardinals' Draft featured balancing act

June 15th, 2017

ST. LOUIS -- An MLB Draft that, for the Cardinals, got off to an unusual start, finished with a flurry on Wednesday, as the Cardinals made 30 selections on Day 3 to complete their 2017 Draft class.

Scouting director Randy Flores and his staff worked under challenging parameters leading up to and during the Draft. They were the lone club without a Day 1 selection, and with a total bonus pool ($2.176 million) significantly lower than all the others, the Cardinals had to stray away from their usual blueprint.

:: 2017 MLB Draft coverage ::

The financial limitations mitigated the club's aggressiveness in going after high school talent, though they did end up with eight high school players in their 38-player class. It also drew the club to more college seniors, of which the Cardinals drafted 16. Those are considered easier signs.

"It was impressive to hear and feel the buy-in from them that we wanted to do well and that started to work right away," Flores said. "There was no change in their productivity. Kudos to everyone on our staff for being engaged at all spots and not losing hope when we thought a guy that we had was going to be ours was taken or we were outgunned. It was staying alert for opportunities that presented themselves today and yesterday."

• Cards select CF Hurst with top pick

Though they waited until the eighth round before drafting a pitcher, the Cardinals went heavy on arms during Day 3. They opened the day by taking pitchers with 13 of their first 18 picks, and the organization nabbed 23 pitchers (seven lefties, 15 righties) in all.

The breakdown of position players includes four catchers, six middle infielders, two third basemen and four outfielders.

"The hope when you look at our draft is that you see balance," Flores said. "It was pitching heavy, sure, at certain points. But it was also position [player] heavy early. You could say that it was power-based, but it was also hit-tool based early. The hope is that, in time, our staff and our department, when you look back sees variance in the type of players that we took."

• Cards take power hitter on Day 3

The Cardinals' Day 3 selections included a high school outfielder who hit a home run out of Marlins Park (Terry Fuller, 15th round), a right-hander who twirled Seton Hall University's first perfect game (Shane McCarthy, 18th round), a college pitcher who underwent Tommy John surgery (Kodi Whitley, 27th round), and a 6-foot-7 right-hander who pitched on the same Florida State University staff as his identical twin (Jim Voyles, 38th round).

One day earlier, the Cardinals began restocking the farm system with new talent by using their first five picks on position players. Scott Hurst (94th overall), Kramer Robertson (124th overall) and Zach Kirtley (154th overall) were each drafted out of college.

• Day 2 overview 

Now, the Cardinals turn their attention elsewhere. They'll start scouring the country for talent ahead of the 2018 Draft, and will work against a July 7 (4 p.m. CT) deadline to sign members of this year's class.

"About a dozen of our guys are getting on flights tomorrow morning to go start scouting for next year," Flores said. "It is a load, a bear of a schedule. But our guys love it, and their work was rewarded today by providing some flexibility and fits when maybe others didn't foresee us having fits for those types of player."