Atlanta kicked off the second day of the 2014 MLB Rule IV draft by grabbing a trio of pitchers in rounds three through five. As the afternoon wore on, however, they started grabbing position players. Four of Atlanta's last five draft choices from day two were hitters, with three of those four being of the college variety. Let's take a look at who Atlanta grabbed in rounds six, seven, eight, nine, and ten.
Sixth Round, 193rd Overall: Keith Curcio, Center Fielder, Florida Southern College
After taking a power bat in first round pick Braxton Davidson, the Braves drafted an athletic, speedy outfielder in Keith Curcio (who is not a dyslexic dark wizard) with their sixth round pick. Curcio has an excellent eye at the plate and combines it with a line drive swing. There's not much power in his swing to speak of, but the bat-to-ball ability is there. He's got plus speed, but some scouts are worried he could end up as a tweener: not quite fast enough to play center and not a good enough hitter to play the corners.
Here's what Baseball America thinks of Curcio.
A first-team Sunshine State Conference player as a sophomore, Curcio led the Mocs in batting average, slugging percentage (.349/.421/.448) and steals (29). Without any loud tools, Curcio earned NWL co-MVP honors. A lefthanded hitter, Curcio has good bat-to-ball skills and finished second in batting average (.367/.442/.471) with the third-lowest strikeout rate (7 percent). Despite his contact ability, scouts said Curcio would have to prove his hitting ability at every level because of a lack of overall strength and bat speed.
At 5-foot-10, 180 pounds, Curcio lacks the physicality of an impact bat, but he fits the mold of a grinder with secondary skills, as he walked significantly more (33) than he struck out (24). He has a line-drive swing with a gap-to-gap approach and well below-average present power. Curcio is an above-average runner and finished third in steals (28). This summer, Curcio saw time in center field, which is where he will play with Florida Southern, but he fits a tweener outfield profile because he is not a true burner, though coaches did praise his defensive instincts. Although he has a quick release, Curcio’s below-average arm will push him to left field if he has to move off center. Curcio has the athleticism to handle second base and has seen some time there in college.
Seventh Round, 223rd Overall: Luke Dykstra, Second Baseman, Westlake High School (CA)
With their seventh round pick, the Braves tapped into a famous bloodline, grabbing Lenny Dykstra's son Luke. Dykstra boasts impressive discipline at the plate, as well as a pretty good knack for contact. Dykstra is known for his tenacious on-field fire and constant drive to improve himself. In scouting speak, he does all the little things right. Combine that with a solid, if unspectacular, offensive profile, and you get a player that Baseball America tabbed as the 110th best prospect in the draft.
Braves Director of Scouting Tony DeMacio said, of Dykstra: "He's just like his dad; he plays with his hair on fire. He's a little taller than his father, plays in the middle of the diamond, swings the bat and can run. He's a baseball player."
Eighth Round, 253rd Overall: Bradley Roney, Right-Handed Pitcher, Southern Mississippi
Atlanta picked Bradley Roney with their eighth round pick, grabbing Southern Mississippi's closer after he set a Golden Eagle career record with thirty saves. Roney has pitched in relief for his entire college career, and that is probably the role that he will play in Atlanta's system as well. He offers a heater that sits around 92-93, as well as a solid slider. He was a two-way player in college, so there's definitely some potential for growth once he starts pitching full time.
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Ninth Round, 283rd Overall: Jordan Edgerton, Third Baseman, UNC-Pembroke
For their ninth round selection, Atlanta once again went back to the Carolinas, this time to grab UNC-Pembroke third baseman Jordan Edgerton. Edgerton is coming off a monster season in which he hit .369/.429/.608 with 11 HR and 13 SB. Additionally, he also showed phenomenal command of the strike zone, notching 22 walks and only 9 strikeouts. Of course, most of this was against inferior competition, but it goes to show that the Braves got a guy that they believe can do a little bit of everything. Oh, and as a fun little aside, Edgerton has experience being a Brave; UNC-Pembroke's mascot is also the Braves!
Tenth Round, 313rd Overall: Matt Tellor, First Baseman, Southeast Missouri State
Atlanta's final day two selection was Matt Tellor, a first baseman from Southeast Missouri State University. He's got a nice short swing with above average power, but he struggles with strikeouts sometimes. The other knock on Tellor is his defense. A guy playing first base in college will likely not be able to play anywhere else at more advanced levels, and on top of that, he's not great at first. That means he'll essentially need to be an above average major league hitter in order to stick in the bigs. That said, there's definitely some upside here.