No stress for Phils as Draft deadline passes

No stress for Phils as Draft deadline passes

ATLANTA -- Phillies senior vice president and general manager Ruben Amaro Jr. wasn't sweating it out as the clock hit 5 p.m. ET on Friday, marking the deadline for signing 2014 June First-Year Draft picks.

Amaro had already done much of the heavy lifting and gotten most of the heavies signed, as the Phillies inked their first 21 Draft picks and 27 of their top 28.

Unlike recent years, the team's Draft was more college-concentrated, as 24 of their top 26 picks had college experience.

Down the road, Philadelphia could soon have a definite SEC feel to it, as top pick (No. 7 overall) Aaron Nola (LSU), a two-time SEC Pitcher of the Year, fourth-round RHP Chris Oliver (Arkansas) and 17th-round third baseman Damek Tomscha (Auburn) are SEC alumni. This is the second time the Phils have selected Tomscha, who has been drafted in three of the last four years.

Among some other interesting picks are third-round selection Aaron Brown and fifth-round selection Rhys Hoskins. Brown, a 6-2, 220-pound talent from Pepperdine, can do it on the mound (12-1 with a 2.07 ERA) and in the outfield (.310 average with a team-leading 12 homers and 47 RBIs). Brown frequently helped his own cause, as four times he homered in games in which he also was winning pitcher. Hoskins is a 6-foot-4, 225-pound power-hitting first baseman who hit 12 homers in 203 at-bats his junior year at Sacramento State.

Other players worth watching are Florida State left-hander Brandon Liebrandt (sixth round), the son of former Major League pitcher Charlie Liebrandt, and Arizona State shortstop Drew Stankiewicz (11th round), the son of former Yankees shortstop Andy Stankiewicz.

Among the unsigned is outfielder Tom Flacco (32nd round), the younger brother of Baltimore Ravens Super Bowl-winning quarterback Joe Flacco. Flacco is committed to Western Michigan, where he will likely play football.

Jon Cooper is a contributor for This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.