Marlins draft Pompey, add arms on Day 2

June 5th, 2018

Pitching was a priority for the Marlins on Day 2 of the Draft, as the club took four arms from rounds 3-10 after taking three position players with their picks on Day 1. Miami also bolstered its depth at catcher and continued to build around a nucleus of outfielders.

The Draft concludes on Wednesday, with exclusive coverage of Rounds 11-40 beginning on at noon ET. Below is a breakdown of the Marlins' action on Day 2:

Round 3: OF Tristan Pompey, Kentucky

Perhaps in an effort to rebuild what was once among MLB's best outfields, Miami made another grab for its spacious gaps at Marlins Park by taking Kentucky's Pompey -- the younger brother of Blue Jays outfielder -- with the No. 89 overall pick. The club selected outfielder Connor Scott with its first-round selection on Monday.

Like Scott, the Canadian native Pompey offers versatility, with the ability to play all three positions, though his arm profiles best in left. He's a switch-hitter with power from both sides that could manifest into 15 or more homers per season. Scouts were somewhat apprehensive with his wooden bat skills after he posted a .230 batting average in 23 games in the Cape Cod League, though he did come back to hit .335/.448/.557 in 50 games with aluminum at Kentucky this season. Pompey was ranked MLB Pipeline's No. 51 overall Draft prospect.

Round 4: C Nick Fortes, Ole Miss

Fortes hit .319/.435/.519 as a junior with 11 homers, second most among Ole Miss players, and made strong defensive strides at catcher that could transition well at the next level, particularly blocking and defending. Scouting reports suggest his arm strength could improve, which might be reflective in him splitting time at first base.

Fortes' strength from the right side of the plate and general athleticism -- he started all 65 games for the Rebels this season -- could lead to accelerated development as a prospect.

Round 5: RHP Chris Vallimont, Mercyhurst College

Vallimont didn't pace any major Draft prospect rankings, yet he wowed as a junior at Mercyhurst College in Pennsylvania, striking out a school-record 147 batters and allowing only 40 hits in 80 1/3 innings. He is the 19th player selected from Mercyhurst, and fifth since 2014, when was taken by the Mariners in the fifth round.

Vallimont's 16.5 strikeouts per nine innings were the highest in Division II, and he helped guide Mercyhurst to their second Division II Baseball Championship Tournament, being named an All-American.

Round 6: C Cameron Barstad, Junipero Serra (Calif.) H.S.

During his first full season at his natural position at catcher this spring, Barstad sustained a hairline fracture of the scaphoid bone under his left thumb that he played through for an extended period before being properly diagnosed. Catcher is a deep position at Junipero Serra, which forced Barstad to play the outfield for much of his first three seasons, but he thrived behind the plate when healthy.

Barstad caught what was considered one of the region's deepest pitching rotations, and was hitting well over .400 at the time he had a cast installed on his left arm. Barstad is a commit to Pac-12 powerhouse Oregon.

Round 7: RHP Cason Sherrod, Texas A&M

Sherrod has one of the more remarkable stories in this year's Draft, having overcome a hearing deficit that leaves him unable to hear roughly half of everything. According to ESPN, Sherrod's parents discovered the deficit when he was a toddler while watching TV, as he could not hear with the volume all the way up.

Today, as he has since high school, Sherrod wears hearing aids that help him on the mound, though he overcame insecurity of wearing them for much of his adolescence, and often relied on lip reading, per ESPN. Perhaps it's no surprise that many teammates and coaches at Texas A&M considered Sherrod the hardest worker on the team. As a senior, the right-hander went 5-2 with a 4.17 ERA and 43 strikeouts in 45 1/3 innings over 26 relief appearances.

Round 8: RHP Peyton Culbertson, Arkansas State

Culbertson has plenty of velocity -- he sits in the mid-90s as a starter and can touch triple digits out of the bullpen -- but he's lacked swing-and-miss stuff, with just 48 strikeouts in 50 2/3 innings this season at Arkansas State. His secondary stuff doesn't play as well, according to scouting reports, but his cutter and changeup are touted with some upside. Culbertson went 2-5 with a 3.73 ERA for an ASU team that struggled, splitting time in the rotation and the bullpen. In the Cape Cod League last year, the right-hander gave up 11 runs in 10 1/3 innings over five outings.

Round 9: RHP Jake Walters, Alabama

Walters was the elder statesman of the Crimson Tide staff -- he made a program-record 52 starts, missing just one over his four-year career -- accumulating 292 strikeouts over his career, third most in program history. He posted a 2.89 ERA in conference play this season, which was fifth best in the SEC, and he tossed some of Alabama's best games, including a shutout against Missouri. Walters became the first player in this year's class taken from the traditionally baseball-rich program.

Round 10: RHP Tanner Andrews, Purdue

As Purdue's baseball reputation in college baseball continues to rise, so has Andrews'. The right-hander became the school's highest selection since right-hander Nick Wittgren was taken in the ninth round -- by the Marlins -- after Purdue's 2012 Big Ten championship season. Andrews went 7-5 with a 2.94 ERA over 98 innings and was named to the All-Big Ten third team.