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Jake's Take: All Eyes on Evan

Coming into the draft, the Rays had 2 true "need" positions. The first being Starting Pitchers who are "ready" or "soon-to-be-ready" and the second being the (not-so)hot corner. The consensus opinion with Rays fans was that we were going to draft Houston starter, Brad Lincoln, and we were going to make sure that his stay in the minors would be a short one(especially considering his workload for the year, thus far). Our Plan 1B was to draft the former Rays draftee who ditched us for UNC. Going into draft day, Rays fans disregarded the grumblings of a Plan C(aka Dirtbag Thirdbagger, Evan Longoria).

Well, those grumblings shouldn't have been ignored. The Rays did infact draft the non-relation to hot actress Eva Longoria. Not only did we draft him, but within an hour of drafting him...we also signed him to a contract.

Basically, what happened afterwords on Rays Msg Boards can be familiarized as what happened in NY when Philly drafted Donovan McNabb over the obvious choice of a running back.

Ironic today being the 6th day of the 6th month of the 6th year of this millenium, seeing that many Rays fans vehemently trashed the Rays draft after the first 3 picks. Basically, Rays fans believe that this draft was actually a step backwards in the progress towards being a future contender in the AL East, AL and World Series.

However, I ask "What's so wrong with the Longoria pick?

Everyone in this draft had their fair share of pros and cons in regards to their projectability(or apparent lack thereof)

Longoria plays 3B, he's an average-to-above average defender, he's a great contact hitter with great plate discipline and he shows glimpses of power. In regards to his cons, scouts say that for the "Best Positional Player" in the draft, Longoria has a very low ceiling and would be more effective if he switched to 2B or OF, where his production would go from "average" to almost "superstar" levels at that position.

I personally am indifferent on this pick, seeing that none of the players that we had our eye on are in the majors yet. However, I wish the best of luck to our newly signed draftee and future Visalia Oak.