Infielder Nick Vilter. Mandatory Credit: union-tribune.com
Round 9. SS Nick Vilter UC-Riverside (CA) JR (6’4’’, 220)
First off, I love this pick. The Padres went out and grabbed one of the most high upside college players in Vilter, who was unfortunately hampered by a hand injury this past season for the Highlanders.
Vilter led the West Coast Conference with 10 HRs and a .550 slugging percentage. With a Padres team that has an absolute anemic offense these are the kind of picks that fans like to see. Vilter probably won’t stick as a shortstop in the big leagues, but his bat is good enough to make him a projectable 3B or OF.
The Padres were very high on Vilter and were enamored by his bat, making him an easy selection in the 9th round. “We were very, very excited to get Vilter in the ninth round; we talked about him a lot,” said Assistant General Manager Chad McDonald to Jeff Sanders of UT-San Diego, also stating that Vilter’s hand checked out OK. “He swung the bat as good as anyone in college baseball to start the year.”
Round 10. LHP Thomas Dorminy Faulkner University (AL) JR (6’0’’, 195)
Dorminy makes it three college arms in four rounds for the Padres, showing a focus on experienced pitching in the back half of their top 10 picks.
There’s no doubt that Dorminy has the stats to be selected in the 10th round, 131K’s in 109 IP. However, the question remains if those stats will translate, considering he was playing NAIA competition. Dorminy was recommended by Padres scout Andrew Salvo and had this to say about him to Corey Brock of MLB.com, “He’s a pitch-ability lefty who throws up to 93 mph with a feel for a curveball and changeup,” Salvo said. “Maybe a Randy Wolf /Ted Lilly comp. He’s a good athlete and an outstanding competitor.” Dorminy was originally slated to go to University of South Florida but opted to go the JC route, and finally ended up at Faulkner.
The Padres draft team did a good job of grabbing some high upside hitters in the first couple rounds, and are now adding good experienced pitchers to boot.