With the Season 16 Amateur Draft quickly approaching we have decided to interview a handful of GM's and see what they feel is the most important part of the first round decision process and what exactly is going on with their team and former draft picks this season.
Our first GM to take the spotlight was Augusta Sea Shark head man, Dustintwise.
D.M.F.P: Mr. Wise, thanks for joining us today. With the draft quickly approaching what are you looking for in this seasons draft?
Dustintwise: Well as always, we're looking for somebody who is going to make a future impact on our franchise. Last season we had the 5th overall pick and I feel we used it wisely. We brought in 19 year old RF, Gerald Parkers, and he made his debut with our Low A squad. After a month and a half with the team we moved him up to High A and he continued to play great ball for us.
D.M.F.P: This season you're not getting your first crack at a player until the 14th pick what are your thoughts with that?
Dustintwise: That's a good thing right? (Laughs) We've compiled a list of our 15 top prospects that we're willing to take there with the 14th overall pick and obviously we just have to wait and see if anybody slides a little bit but we feel completely confident with all 15 guys.
D.M.F.P: You mentioned Parkers a little earlier, what's your timetable with him right now?
Dustintwise: As with all prospects you can't rush anything. He's 20 right now and he's done a great job in getting up to the AA level but I don't plan on seeing him making any moves from there anytime soon. My guess is he'll be in AA the remainder of this season and the start of next. Maybe by the time he's 22 he'll be getting his crack at the Majors, we're definitely not looking to rush him though.
After meeting with Dustin we drove down to Boston to meet with defending World Champion, Coonja76.
D.M.F.P: First off, let me say congratulations on winning the World Series last season! Is winning the championship going to change the way you approach this draft?
Coonja: No, no real change. I'll still set my board top to bottom the same as I would have if I had a top 5 pick. I set my board, and wait to see what player drops to my position.
D.M.F.P: What is something you always look for when you're putting together your draft board?
Coonja: I believe in building my franchises with as much overall talent as possible. So, I don't target certain positions, I target talent.
D.M.F.P: And talent your team has! Good luck the rest of this season and if you capture another World Championship we'll be back up to visit.
After our stop in Boston we decided to sight-see for a bit until we wound up in Scranton, PA. Here we met with a very giddy, Kdforester.
D.M.F.P: Thanks for having us on such short notice. What makes you more inclined to take "player a" over "player b" when you look at their talent level and potential.
Kdforester: For me the tie-breaker between choosing one player over another always comes down to the player’s makeup. I want to make sure that when I’m taking a guy he has a good shot at reaching his potential
D.M.F.P: When you look at prospects, do you try and find somebody who is going to fill a hole in your ML line up or do you just try to grab the best overall talent?
Kdforester: As far as planning goes I never look at trying to fill voids in my lineup or projecting what I might need in several years, or at least this is the case in this particular world. In some of my other worlds where I’m building I will try to project the lineup out and adjust my rankings a little. Since my team is competitive I’m really just looking for the best prospect and if at some point he doesn’t fit into my roster I will simply trade him.
Still excited over landing Cal Cook, we had to sneak away from the Schrute's facility so we could head on down to Virginia and meet up with the GM in charge of the first overall pick this season, Pieo.
D.M.F.P: This season you have the first overall draft pick. Are you more excited about being in this position or nervous?
Pieo: Very excited, because it will be used on a great player that will fill a huge need!
D.M.F.P: Richmond has been towards the bottom these past few seasons, do you think your recent draft picks are ready to carry this team back to the promise land?
Pieo: Absolutely they will. However, I feel the young studs I trade for & the three that were already on this team when I took over, will have even more of an impact
D.M.F.P: I'm sure you knew it was coming but, I can't let you go without asking; who is this year's number 1 overall pick going to be?
Pieo: Well, I usually wouldn't divulge this type of confidential intel, but I like you, so I'm very excited to let you know that Don Hill will be bringing his talents down to Virginia Beach and become a Rusty Trombone!
The Richmond staff seemed excited and eager to talk more but it is time to depart. Next up we boarded a plane and headed to Hot-lanta. Here we met Hamilton44.
D.M.F.P: Wipe that smile off your face, we're not hear to talk about the fact your team improved 36 games over the previous season, though that is impressive! We're hear to talk about a dynamic prospect of yours, Derek Hernandez. Last season you selected Hernandez second overall, was he the guy you wanted all along?
Hamilton: Yea, Derek was our number 1 guy. When Montreal grabbed Deivi DeJesus 1st overall, our war room exploded. We knew we were getting our guy.
D.M.F.P: Can't blame either teams for their selections, definitely great 1-2 players! What are you looking for this season as far as prospects go. Are you targeting a pitcher or are you more likely to aim for another Hernandez type talent?
Hamilton: Well, fortunately this year, we have a little wiggle room. We've got 3 first round picks, thanks to some "Type A's" that walked. We are definitely going to look for some infield help but first and foremost, we are looking for pitching.
D.M.F.P: Last season you had the number 2 overall slot this season you have to wait till pick number 10. Are there some players you're afraid you may miss?
Hamilton: Absolutely. There are always guys that your afraid your going to miss on. But picking anywhere in the top 15 to 20, your chances of getting a quality player are pretty damn good. You cant let missing out on a guy hold you back from hitting a homer with another guy.
D.M.F.P: Last question, what's your timetable on us seeing Atlanta in the playoffs?
Hamilton: Offensively, I feel we could compete right now. The pitching, however, is a different story. If I had to put a number on it, id say 2-3 years.
After Hamilton wrapped things up with us we decided to make one final stop and hit the beaches of Miami. Here we met with rookie GM, Riceformvp. We talked not only about his first ever draft, but how he feels about this first season in the spotlight.
D.M.F.P: You're about to take your first crack at the Amateur Draft, what are your expectations this season when you're "on the clock?"
Riceformvp: Well, since this is my first year having to find myself on the clock I am going into the draft with mediocre expectations. I can not let myself down even if I don't get the best draft pick. I will go into the draft with a positive attitude and try to get the best player I can.
D.M.F.P: Very understandable, what are your thoughts on your team and season so far?
Riceformvp: Well, I'm not satisfied, but not dissapointed! I mean, Under a .500 record by 10 games so far is not really that bad. There is plenty of time to pull my record up. If the season ended today I would be kind of happy.
D.M.F.P: Well good luck! Picking 3rd overall is never an easy task but I'm sure you'll get a guy who can help you out and hopefully help you get Florida into the playoffs in the next few seasons!
Well ladies and gentleman, this wraps up Inside the Draft Volume 1. You found out the future number 1 draft pick and got to hear some thoughts from around the league. Tune in next time to hear our newly drafted all-stars and their thoughts on their new teams.