Over the weekend I came across a Tigers program, excuse me, magazine from 2001 with Steve Sparks on the cover. Inside there’s an article reviewing the Tigers’ draft from that year and it includes some notables:
Fifth Round (147th overall pick): 3B Ryan Raburn, South Florida Junior College. Raburn is a 6-0, 185-pound third baseman who swings a strong bat from the righthand side of the plate. He is solid defensively at third base and he has the potential to develop plus power.
Eighth Round (237th overall pick): SS Donald Kelly, Point Park College. The second-highest player ever drafted from Pointe Park College, Kelly is a tall, lanky, true shortstop with a plus arm. The 6-4, 190-pounder was named the 2001 American Mideast Conference Player of the Year after leading Point Park with a .450 batting average, 68 hits, 45 runs and 39 stolen bases. In both 2000 and 2001, Kelly was named First-Team All-American Mideast Conference at shortstop.
Here are a couple one-time Tigers you’ll recognize:
Third Round (87th overall pick): 3B John Hannahan, University of Minnesota. The 6-2, 205-pound Hannahan is a lefty swinging third sacker who Tigers scouts describe as a real grinder and a good solid player. (We knew John, of course, as Jack.)
Fourth Round (117th overall pick): C Michael Rabelo, University of Tampa. Rabelo swings the bat well from both sides of the plate, possesses a plus arm and is very intelligent.
By the by, Detroit’s first-round pick that year (11th overall) was Kenny Baugh out of Rice University. The second-round selections included RHP Preston Larrison from University of Evansville (55th overall), and Matthew Coenen out of Charleston Southern University (65th overall).
Not a stellar draft, but at least 10 years later there are a couple of players impacting this team’s postseason run.