Tonight's draft: Strasburg at No. 1 and then what?

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We’ll have pick-by-pick coverage of the draft on Circling the Bases
tonight beginning at 6:00 p.m. ET, but in the meantime here are the top
10 picks projected by Jonathan Mayo of MLB.com and Jim Callis of Baseball America:

Pick/Team         Mayo                     Callis
1. Nationals Stephen Strasburg, RHP Stephen Strasburg, RHP
2. Mariners Dustin Ackley, OF/1B Dustin Ackley, OF/1B
3. Padres Mike Minor, LHP Donavan Tate, OF
4. Pirates Aaron Crow, RHP Aaron Crow, RHP
5. Orioles Zach Wheeler, RHP Zach Wheeler, RHP
6. Giants Tyler Matzek, LHP Tyler Matzek, LHP
7. Braves Alex White, RHP Alex White, RHP
8. Reds Mike Leake, RHP Mike Minor, LHP
9. Tigers Jacob Turner, RHP Rex Brothers, LHP
10. Nationals Drew Storen, RHP Drew Storen, RHP

Mayo and Callis both have the top 10 dominated by pitching, and there’s
quite a bit of agreement within their projections. San Diego State
phenom Stephen Strasburg at No. 1 and North Carolina hitting machine
Dustin Ackley at No. 2 seem all but guaranteed, but no one is quite
sure what the Padres will do at No. 3 and Aaron Crow’s potential
signability issues could potentially shake things up after that.

Interestingly, both projections have Washington taking Stanford
closer Drew Storen at No. 10, which makes sense given that he’s
considered the most MLB-ready reliever in the draft and the Nationals’
bullpen has been historically awful. If they can get Strasburg signed
and take Storen with their second first-round pick, the Nationals’
pitching staff could look a lot different time next year.

Zack Greinke named the Dbacks’ Opening Day starter

SCOTTSDALE, AZ - FEBRUARY 21:  Pitcher Zack Greinke #21 of the Arizona Diamondbacks poses for a portrait during photo day at Salt River Fields at Talking Stick on February 21, 2017 in Scottsdale, Arizona.  (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
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Not a surprise, but a news item on a slow news day is a news item on a slow news day: Diamondbacks manager Torey Lovullo has named Zack Greinke as the club’s Opening Day starter.

Greinke’s first season with the Diamondbacks is not exactly what the club hoped for when he signed a six-year, $206.5 million deal in December of 2015. He dealt with oblique and shoulder issues while struggling to a 4.37 ERA over 26 starts. Greinke hasn’t pitched yet this spring, but will make his spring debut on Friday. He and the club are obviously hoping for a quiet March and a strong beginning to the season.

Either for its own sake or to increase the trade value of a player who was acquired by the previous front office regime.

“La Vida Baseball,” celebrating Latino baseball, launches

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A new website has launched. It’s called “La Vida Baseball,” and it’s all about celebrating the past, present and future of Latino baseball from a Latino perspective.

The site, produced in partnership with the Hall of Fame, has four general areas of focus:

  • Who’s Now: Focusing on current Latino players;
  • Who’s Next: Focusing on top prospects here, in the Caribbean and in Central and South America;
  • Our Life: Off-the-Field stuff, including player’s lives, lifestyles and hobbies; and
  • Our Legends: Focusing on Latino baseball history, Hall of Famers and overlooked players.

As the site has just launched there aren’t yet a ton of stories up there, but there is one about Roberto Clemente, another about Felix Hernandez and some other stuff.

The site is much-needed. Baseball reporters for American outlets are overwhelmingly white, non-Spanish speakers. Reporters, who, generally, gravitate to the players who are the most like they are. Which is understandable on some level. When you’re writing stories about people you need to be able to communicate with them and relate to them on more than a mere perfunctory level. As such, no matter how good the intentions of baseball media, we tend to see the clubhouse and the culture of baseball from a distinctly American perspective. And we tend to paint Latino players with a broad, broad brush.

La Vida Baseball will, hopefully, remedy all of that and will, hopefully, give us a fresh and insightful depiction Latino players and their culture.