Angels hang around the mound
Ten pitchers -- plus UCLA's Page -- taken on first day of draft
As an organization, the Angels value pitching and they didn't hide the fact on Day 1 of the First-Year Player Draft.
Pitchers led the Angels' 17 selections with 10 taken on Tuesday, while the club also drafted three catchers, two outfielders and a pair of infielders in the opening 18 rounds. The 50-round draft concludes on Wednesday.
High school players had a slight edge over those from four-year colleges, eight to seven. The Angels also took two players from community colleges.
Hyun Choi "Hank" Conger was the Angels' No. 1 choice. The catcher from Huntington Beach High School was taken with the 25th pick, which the Angels got as compensation from Cleveland for losing free agent pitcher Paul Byrd.
The Angels lost their own pick, the 26th, to the Dodgers for signing pitcher Jeff Weaver.
Another highlight was outfielder Jarrad Page, a four-year starting strong safety from UCLA. He was taken in the seventh round. Outfielder Clay Fuller, younger brother of Angels' Minor League outfielder Cody Fuller, was selected in the fourth round.
The Angels selected four players from Southern California: Conger, Page, left-hander Robert Fish from Miller High in San Bernardino in the sixth round and left-handed pitcher Nate Boman from the University of San Diego in the ninth round.
"We want to be the best team in Southern California. We want to prove that on the field," director of scouting Eddie Bane said. "We want to be the best in the Minors and throughout the organization."
Here is a look at Day 1 draft action:
1st round, 25th overall: Hank Conger, S/R, C, 6-0, 205, Huntington Beach (Calif.) High School
Conger hit .449 with 11 homers and 27 RBIs to lead the team. He also led the Oilers with 25 runs scored and seven doubles in 78 at-bats.
3rd round, 102nd overall: Russell Moldenhauer, L/R, OF, 5-11, 200 Boerne (Texas) High School
Moldenhauer hit five home runs, drove in 21 RBIs and scored 25 runs for the Greyhounds. The left-handed hitter has committed to the University of Texas and led his high school squad to a 26-10-1, second-place finish in his senior year.
4th round, 132nd overall: Clayton Fuller, S/R, OF, 6-2, 180, Smithson Valley High School, Bulverde, Texas
Fuller led all of Region IV (Texas) with 48 runs and completed his senior season with six home runs and 24 RBIs. He also pitched in high school and has orally committed to play for Baylor next season.
5th round, 162nd overall: Kenneth Herndon, R/R, RHP, 6-5, 200, Gulf Coast CC, Southport, Fla.
Herndon was drafted for the third time on Tuesday. He was first tabbed by the Royals in the 38th round out of high school and last year the Twins took him in the 23rd round. Herndon went 10-0 mark and 2.15 ERA, 59 strikeouts and four complete games this season.
6th round, 192nd overall: Robert Fish, L/L, LHP, 6-2, 215, AB Miller High School, San Bernardino, Calif.
Fish had an 8-4 record while striking out 102 batters and walking 28 in 69 2/3 innings in his senior year with six complete games and one shutout.
7th round, 222nd overall: Jarrad Page, S/R, OF, 6-1, 205, UCLA
Page not only played outfield for the Bruins; he was their starting strong safety. Page was taken by the Kansas City Chiefs in the seventh and final round of April's NFL Draft. Page hit .195 in two years at UCLA, with four home runs, 28 RBIs and 37 runs scored.
8th round 252nd overall: Matthew Sweeney, R/L, 1B, 6-3, 210, Magruder High School, Rockville, Md.
Sweeney hit .600 with 11 home runs and 36 RBIs. He also struck out just once in 77 plate appearances. Sweeney, who hit .463 as a junior with six homers and 28 RBIs, has signed to play with Potomac State next season.
9th round, 282nd overall: Nathan Boman, L/L, LHP, 6-0, 180, University of San Diego
Boman didn't play his junior year after shoulder surgery cut short his sophomore season. He struck out 122 batters in 99 innings with six saves in his collegiate career. The Angels also drafted Boman with their 39th pick in 2003.
10th round, 312nd overall: Leonardo Calderon, L/L, LHP, Lake City CC, Loaiza, Puerto Rico
Calderon posted an 8-3 record in 2006. He appeared both as a starter and reliever and ended with a 3.29 ERA, including 89 strikeouts and 51 walks in 66 innings, and held batters to just a .201 clip against him.
11th round 342nd overall: David Pellegrine, L/R, RHP, 6-4, 195, Northeastern
Pellegrine posted a 6-5 record with 69 strikeouts and 42 walks in 92 1/3 innings last season and ended his college career with an overall 12-8 mark and a 4.26 ERA.
12th round, 372nd overall: Jordan Walden, R/R, RHP, 6-4, 215, Mansfield (Texas) High School
Walden has the size the power to dominate. He's been clocked as high as 97 mph and mixes in a good curve. He was slowed by a groin injury this past season.
13th round, 402nd overall: Blake Holler, L/L, LHP, 6-4, 180, Stanford
Holler amassed an 11-5 record in his Cardinal career, sporting a 4.58 ERA with 117 strikeouts and 52 walks in 132 2/3 innings primarily as a reliever. Holler's best year was his sophomore campaign when he was 5-2 with a 3.48 ERA, one save and 51 strikeouts in 54 1/3 innings.
14th round, 432nd overall: Chris Armstrong, L/L, LHP, 5-9, 170, Owasso (Okla.) High School
Armstrong struck out 503 batters in 303 1/3 innings and walked 117 in his high school career, compiling a 40-4 mark and 2.10 ERA. The left-hander started the state title game in each of his four years at Owasso and won two of them -- in 2003 and 2004.
15th round 462nd, overall: Scott Knazek, R/R, C, 6-1, 215, Rider University
Knazek scored a team-high 47 runs in 2006 with 34 RBIs and four home runs. He also threw out 21 of 39 baserunners. The right-hander hit .285 at Rider, with a season high of .316 during his sophomore year.
16th round, 492nd overall: Scott Carroll, R/R, RHP, 6-5, 200, Southwest Missouri State
Carroll played both football and baseball last season. The redshirt sophomore was a transfer from Purdue and compiled a 6-4 record with a 3.73 ERA, a complete game, 55 strikeouts and 32 walks in his first season with the Bears. He's been clocked in the mid-90s and also throws a splitter and a curveball.
17th round, 522nd overall: Tadd Brewer, R/R, 2B, 6-2, 190, Lipscomb University
Brewer hit .266 in his senior season with a team-high 35 RBIs, nine stolen bases and 22 errors.
18th round, 552nd overall: Charles Brewer, R/R, RHP, 6-2, 180, Chaparral High School, Paradise Valley, Calif.
Brewer, no relation to Tadd, did not lose in 18 decisions in his high school career and went 11-0 with a 1.51 ERA as a senior. Brewer struck out 54 batters in 69 innings and committed to play for UCLA.
Mike Scarr is a reporter for MLB.com. Associate reporter Greg Wagner contributed to this report. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.