D-backs have decided on No. 1 Draft pick
'It has been a wonderful process,' Ladnier says of preparation
PHOENIX -- The first part of Sunday was spent wrapping up a discussion about outfielders that could be available late in the Draft, but then the talk in the D-backs Draft room returned to the No. 1 overall pick.
"We had a conversation and went through them again and talked about them," D-backs scouting director Deric Ladnier said early Sunday evening. "Just respectfully to the group because you have varying opinions always on players -- whether you take a position player, whether you take a pitcher, whether you take a high school guy, whether you take a college guy. I've known who I've personally thought was the best pick for a while, but out of respect for the process and the fact that you could change your mind, you have to go through the process. And we've done that and we're done."
So the D-backs have decided who they will take with No. 1 overall pick in the Draft, which gets underway at 4 p.m. MST on Monday. They just aren't telling anyone outside of the organization who that player is.
The D-backs have, however, let a group of five players know that they were among those being considered for the first pick. They did not tell any of the five which one they would be selecting.
"We've reached out to the group of guys that we're considering just to let them know that we were considering them," Ladnier said. "We haven't said, 'We're taking you.' It's more of a professional courtesy than anything so that they can be aware. I would assume all of them want to be the No. 1 pick in the country."
Speculation has focused on a pair of Vanderbilt teammates -- shortstop Dansby Swanson and right-hander Carson Fulmer -- along with high school catcher Tyler Stephenson.
Stephenson's name picked up steam when it was speculated that Arizona could cut a pre-draft deal with him that would save them money for use later in the Draft.
"We've never gone into this thing saying that we're going to make a deal," Ladnier said without specifically mentioning Stephenson. "We've gone into this thing saying we're going to draft the best player for this organization and negotiate the best deal we can for this organization."
The D-backs began Draft deliberations around 10 days ago and at the urging of general manager Dave Stewart spent a lot of time initially discussing players that could be taken in the 10th round or later.
Now with the Draft board finally arranged, Ladnier was asked how he felt about the way the process unfolded.
"I feel outstanding," he said. "The guys all of them from [chief baseball officer] Tony La Russa to the interns that are working in that room diligently, it has been a wonderful process. And quite frankly it's gone seamlessly, which I'm very proud of. I'm proud of the people that worked in that room. They've done remarkable things in my personal opinion."