SECAUCUS, NJ: MLB commissioner Bud Selig speaks during the MLB First Year Player Draft held in Studio 42 at the MLB Network in Secaucus, New Jersey. (Photo by Mike Stobe/Getty Images)
The Red Sox had three selections among the first 37 picks of Major League Baseball's 2012 first-year player draft, and they took college players with each one. As college players, the ceilings aren't as high as those of say, a Henry Owens or a Blake Swihart, who both came out of high school with a few years more of dream left on them in last year's draft.* But that's not to say they don't have their own potential, either.
*It's also important to note that, by the time Boston's first pick came up, there were no real Owens or Swihart types on the board -- the 2012 draft class is far shallower than its 2011 counterpart.
Pick #24 - Deven Marrero, SS: Marrero was expected to go in the top 10 of some mocks, but ended up sliding all the way to Boston at #24. Statistically, his bat didn't impress much in his last year of college with Arizona State, but the Red Sox like his swing:
"He has a very quiet swing - functional. He's a guy that sprays the ball around the field. He has what we call sneaky power - a guy that obviously doesn't look like the biggest player on the field but can definitely juice the ball out of the stadium. He's certainly somebody who we feel like has a chance to impact the baseball."
Pick #31 - Brian Johnson, LHP: Johnson's Baseball America scouting report said he was essentially a soft-tossing lefty with the potential to have a much more full repertoire in short order, a lefty who, while not possessing the loftiest ceiling, had a high floor and was expected to be a back-end starter in the bigs. The Red Sox saw a bit more velocity in his arm than that 88-91, apparently:
"The fastball is at 90-94. He can pitch with a plus fastball, can spin a breaking ball, throws two different breaking balls, obviously has a feel for his changeup, very repeatable delivery and it's a guy that throws strikes
Plus fastball from a lefty, with a repeatable delivery? Maybe there's a bit more to this college arm than was first thought, in the same way there was with someone like Brandon Workman.
Pick #37 - Pat Light, RHP: Monmouth's Light is a bit more of a mystery, in that it hasn't been determined whether or not his plus-plus fastball is a better fit for relief, or if he'll develop the rest of his repertoire enough to be a successful starter. When you have a plus-plus fastball, though, these kinds of questions aren't necessarily a bad thing, especially with the #37 pick.
"He's a guy that we feel like has three pitches, certainly will need to develop a little bit more of a changeup and a breaking ball, but for us, it's a power fastball that's one of the best fastballs in the draft."
The draft continues Tuesday starting at noon eastern, and we'll have coverage of the rest of the picks from the first 10 rounds throughout the day.