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Jack Zduriencik’s Impact: Past, Present, and Future

 

The Brewers opening-day-2011 starting lineup will feature five homegrown players. Their presence reflects a knack for drafting and developing positional players; something often attributed to one man; former Brewers scouting director Jack Zduriencik. Baseball America’s executive of the year in 2007 may have moved on to Seattle, but his Milwaukee legacy may be only beginning to bloom. With free agency looming for a number of the Jack Z picks, the Brewers stand a good chance to replenish their system with compensation picks. And for the 2011 season, the last of Jack’s first round picks were used as bate to lure two proven starting pitchers.

 

In terms of sheer numbers, the Brewers during Jack Z’s years (1999-2008) rank close to the bottom with only 39 players having reached the major leagues. Seven teams topped the 50-player mark with Oakland leading the way 

with 56.

 

A's

56

 

Cubs

45

Giants

54

 

Mariners

42

Rays

53

 

Nationals

41

Cardinals

52

 

Blue Jays

41

Diamondbacks

52

 

Yankees

41

White Sox

51

 

Rockies

41

Rangers

50

 

Royals

40

Braves

49

 

Brewers

39

Angels

49

 

Astros

39

Dodgers

48

 

Orioles

38

Padres

46

 

Indians

37

Tigers

46

 

Pirates

37

Marlins

46

 

Reds

37

Twins

45

 

Phillies

37

Red Sox

45

 

Mets

35

These numbers, however, represent quantity rather than quality. It’s difficult to gauge how many inferior players slipped into major league lineups due to desperation/injury, and/or a franchise’s need to save face with their bonus babies. On the flip side, many superior players were stuck at AAA; blocked by superstars at their respective positions?

 

What’s more significant is what players do during their window of opportunity and beyond. It’s here where Jack Z’s legacy grows. Every year during his stay in Milwaukee, the Brewers drafted at least one player whose eventual effectiveness helped the Brewers return to the playoffs in 2008. This same nucleus minus Hardy remains the heart of a team now ready to go the distance, a team that finally took a risk and dealt some of Jack Z’s picks in exchange for pitching. The excellent return replaces a void left when Sheets and Sabbathia departed.

 

 

WAR

# Pick

Ben Sheets (1999)

20.9

10

Corey Hart (2000)

10.2

321

JJ Hardy (2001)

9.9

56

Prince Fielder (2002)

15.8

7

Rickie Weeks (2003)

7.9

2

Yovani Gallardo (2004)

9.6

46

Ryan Braun (2005)

14.5

5

No other team in baseball can claim the same draft consistency as the Brewers had under Jack Z. The Red Sox, Phillies, Angels,  and Athletics fared extremely well, especially in the pitching department with a better playoff presence as a possible result. Other teams like the White Sox failed to develop a single player of the Brewer’s caliber and the Astros, other than Hunter Pence in 2004, came up completely empty.

Some players were left off the list below because they were traded away before ever appearing on the major league level. Most notably are Dan Haren (Cardinals-2001), Adrian Gonzalez (Marlins-2000), and maybe the worst trade in Expos/Nationals history that sent Brandon Phillips, Grady Sizemore, and Cliff Lee to the Indians in 2002. The Indians then reversed their good fortune and traded their three most promising picks; Luke Scott, Jeremy Guthrie, and Kevin Kouzmanoff. Many other players were drafted multiple times and never signed.(Ian Kinsler-Diamondbacks in both 2000 and 2001 before eventually signing with Texas in 2003.)

 

The draft and development process is far from being an exact science. In comparison to the rest of baseball, the Brewers did quite well under Jack Zduriencik. And when that unfortunate day arrives and the Brewer nucleus flees for free agent riches, Jack Z’s legacy will ripple on with compensation picks that hopefully develop into the next wave of major league Brewers. If that’s the case….the wheel…Jack Z’s wheel will keep on turning in Milwaukee. For now, we have the 2011 Brewers that may very well prove to be the realization of Jack Z’s vision. 

ATHLETICS

WAR

Pick 

DODGERS

WAR

Pick

YANKEES

WAR

Pick

Barry Zito (P-1999)

31.9

9

Jonathan Broxton (P-2002)

6.2

60

Phil Hughes (P-2004)*

4.9

23

Rich Harden (P-2000)

15.5

510

Russel Martin (2B-2002)

13

511

Brett Gardner (OF-2005)

6.2

109

Nick Swisher (1B-2002)*

15.9

16

Chad Billingsley (P-2003)

12

24

Joba Chamberlain (P-2006)*

4.7

41

Joe Blanton (P-2002)*

10.8

24

Matt Kemp(OF-2003)

12

181

 

 

 

Huston Street (P-2004) *

9.7

40

Clayton Kershaw (P-2006)

9

7

ROCKIES

 

 

Kurt Suzuki (C-2004)

8.6

67

 

 

 

Jason Jennings (P-1999)

9.2

16

Dallas Braden (P-2004)

5.1

727

PADRES

 

 

Garrett Atkins (1B-2000)

9.9

137

Andrew Bailey (P-2006)

6.4

188

Jake Peavy (P-1999)

27

472

Clint Barmes (SS-2000)

7.2

287

Trevor Cahill (P-2006)

6

66

Jason Bartlett (SS-2001)

13

390

Troy Tulowitzki (SS-2005)

18.6

7

 

 

 

Khalil Greene (SS-2002) **

8.1

13

 

 

 

 

 

 

Matt Latos (P-2006)

2.8

333

ROYALS

 

 

GIANTS

 

 

 

 

 

David Dejesus (OF2000)

21.7

104

Noah Lowry (P-2001)

8.3

30

TIGERS

 

 

Zack Greinke (P-2002)

22.8

6

Matt Cain (P-2002)

20.1

25

Curtis Granderson (OF-2002)

21

80

Billy Butler (3B-2004)

5

14

Brain Wilson (P-2004)

5.4

723

Justin Verlandeer (P-2004)

19

2

 

 

 

Tim Lincecum (P-2006)

18.3

10

 

 

 

BREWERS

 

 

Buster Posey (C-2008)

2.8

5

MARLINS

 

 

 Ben Sheets (1999-P)

20.9

10

 

 

 

Josh Beckett (P-1999)

23

2

Corey Hart (2000-OF)

10.2

321

RAYS

 

 

Josh Johnson (P-2002)

16

113

 JJ Hardy (2001-SS)

9.9

56

Josh Hamilton (OF-1999)

15.7

1

 

 

 

Prince Fielder (2002-1B)

15.8

7

Carl Crawford (OF-1999)

26.1

52

TWINS

 

 

Rickie Weeks (2003-2B)

7.9

2

B.J. Upton (SS-2002)

13.1

2

Justin Morneau (C-1999)

21

89

Yovani Gallardo (2004-P)

9.6

46

Evan Langoria 3B-2006)

18.1

3

Joe Mauer (C-2001)

39

1

Ryan Braun (2005-3B)

14.5

5

David Price (P-2007)

6.7

1

Denard Span (OF-2002)

7.2

20

 

 

 

 

 

 

Scott Baker (P-2003)

11

58

ASTROS

 

 

CARDINALS

 

 

Matt Garza (P-2005)

9.6

25

Hunter Pence (OF-2004)

6.7

64

Albert Pujols (3B-1999)

83.8

402

 

 

 

 

 

 

Yadier Molina (C-2000)

6.2

215

RED SOX

 

 

ORIOLES

 

 

Brendan Ryan (SS-2003

10.9

113

Kevin Youkilis (3B-2001)

25

243

Brian Roberts (SS-1999)

22

50

Colby Rasmus *(OF -2005)

5.7

28

Jon Lester (P-2002)

18

57

Erik Bedard (P-1999)

17.1

187

 

 

 

Jonathan Papelbon (P-2003)

15

114

Nick Markakis (OF)

18.3

7

DIAMONDBACKS

 

 

Dustin Pedroia (SS-2004)

18

65

 

 

 

Chris Capuano ( P-1999)

8.4

238

Jacob Ellsbury (OF-2005)*

6.3

23

INDIANS

 

 

Lyle Overbay ( 1B-1999)

18.1

538

Clay Bucholz (P-2005)*

6.8

42

Jeremy Guthrie (P)

14.4

22

Brandon Webb ( P-2000)

27.6

249

 

 

 

 

 

 

Carlos Quentin ( OF-2003)

5.6

29

CUBS

WAR

Pick

PIRATES

 

 

Stephen Drew ( SS-2004)

8.9

15

Mark Prior (P-2001

14

2

Ryan Doumit (C-1999)

5.8

59

Mark Reynolds ( SS-2004)

5.9

476

Geovany Soto (C-2001)

8.1

318

Jose Bautista (3B-2000)

5.9

599

Justin Upton ( SS-2005)

8.4

1

 

 

 

Nate McLouth (2B-2000)

6.9

749

Max Scherzer ( P-2006)

5.6

11

MARINERS

 

 

Paul Maholm (P-2003)

7.9

8

 

 

 

J.J. Putz (P-1999)

10

185

Andrew McCutchen (OF-2005)

6.4

11

WHITE SOX

 

 

Adam Jones (SS-2003) *

7.7

37

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

REDS

 

 

RANGERS

 

 

NATIONALS

 

 

Joey Votto (C-2002)

13.5

44

Mark Teixeira (3B-2001)

36.7

5

Chad Cordero (P-2003) **

7.8

20

Jay Bruce (OF-2005)

4.9

12

John Danks (P-2003)

16.9

9

Ryan Zimmerman (3B-2005)

18

4

Drew Stubbs (OF-2006)

5.8

8

Ian Kinsler (SS-2003) **

19.2

496

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

BLUE JAYS

 

 

PHILLIES

 

 

BRAVES

 

 

Alexis Rios (3B-1999)

12

19

Brett Myers (P-1999)

12.2

12

Kelly Johnson (SS-2000)*

14.5

38

Aaron Hill (SS-2003)

16

13

Marlon Byrd (OF-1999)

14.5

306

Brian McCann (C-2002)

18.1

64

Shaun Marcum (P-2003)

9.9

80

Chase Utley (2B-2000)

38.7

15

Yunel Escobar (SS-2005)

13.2

75

Ricky Romero (P-2005)

5.6

6

Gavin Floyd (P-2001)

8.7

4

Tommy Hanson (P-2005)

5.1

677

 

 

 

Ryan Howard (1B-2001)

20.9

140

Jason Heyward (OF-2007)

4.4

14

 

 

 

Cole Hamels (P-2002)

17.1

17

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

ANGELS

 

 

 

 

 

METS

 

 

John Lackey (P-1999)

26.4

68

 

 

 

Angel Pagan (OF-1999)

9.5

136

Mike Napoli  (C-2000)

11

500

 

 

 

David Wright (3B-2001) *

31.1

38

Joe Saunders (P-2002)

8

12

 

 

 

 

 

 

Howie Kendrick (2B-2002)

9.6

294

 

 

 

 

 

 

Jered Weaver (P-2004)

19.9

12

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  

 

 

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