Atlanta Braves Thursday Morning 2012 MLB Draft Links

Here are this morning's clippings from local newspapers about some of the players drafted by the Atlanta Braves over the past three days. For links to the original TC reviews of each pick, follow these links: First Pick, Second Pick, Rounds 3-7, Rounds 8-15, Rounds 16-25, Rounds 26-40.

The left sidebar has a widget that will keep up with players who have signed with the Braves, so far we list 8 players who have signed or agreed to deals. Once we know some dollar figures on those deals I'll put up a story detailing and dissecting that information.

Below are links to local stories about each player, with a clipped passage from the article (draft round listed in parenthesis). But first a review of the Braves draft by MLB's Jonathan Mayo, and then a story from the Braves site about the first few picks agreeing to deals:

Draft winners include Cubs, Astros and Pirates | MLB.com: News
This is another organization that broke from what had been slightly more conservative drafting of late. Starting with the high school arm in their backyard in Lucas Sims, the Braves brought in more high-end upside types than they have recently, including high school catcher Bryan de la Rosa and prep outfielder Connor Lien. Getting a Day 1 talent like college lefty Alex Wood in the second round was another nice find.

Signability not an issue as Braves wrap Draft | braves.com: News
Among those expected to sign soon are pitchers Lucas Sims and Alex Wood -- Atlanta's first two selections. The Braves made Sims, a right-hander from suburban Atlanta, their first-round pick Monday night. A few hours later, he told reporters he intended to sign with his hometown team and forgo his commitment to Clemson. Wood was the Braves' second-round pick and said he would forgo his final two years of eligibility at Georgia.

Fernelys Sanchez (16): MLB First-Year Player Draft notebook: GW's Sanchez goes to Braves in 16th round - NYPOST.com
Sanchez was thrilled with the opportunity the Atlanta Braves gave him, taking him in the 16th round (509th overall) after he missed most of the year with a broken left fibula. "I was shocked, I was excited, I’m happy it happened," the gifted outfielder said. "I’m ready to keep doing good things. I’m going to go there and do my best. I’m going to do what I can to keep moving up to the next level."

More after the jump...

Levi Hyams (19): Georgia’s Levi Hyams selected by Atlanta Braves in 19th round | The Red and Black
"I know a lot of juniors who got drafted and wish they had their senior year because you can never get that back," Hyams added. "I came back, and I was a little stressed out about the draft, but when I got the call, I was thrilled. Actually, I was just sitting at home watching a movie, and my parents were the ones following the draft. When they heard my name, they ran downstairs to tell me. I’ve talked with the Braves, and we’re going to finalize everything soon, and I’ll head to mini-camp and see where I go play. I’ve talked to Alex (Wood, a 2nd round pick of the Braves and fellow Bulldog), and we’re looking forward to going to camp together and maybe playing on the same team again. We’re both ready to get started."

Shae Simmons (22) & Trenton Moses (26): seMissourian.com: College Sports: Atlanta Braves select Southeast Missouri State baseball players Simmons, Moses in MLB draft (06/07/12)
Although Simmons has the option of returning to Southeast for his senior season next year, he said that probably won't happen pending some discussions with his family later Wednesday night. "I'll talk to my parents, but I want to start my career now," Simmons said. "I can always go back to school."

Kevin McKague (23): Braves draft Army's McKague | Varsity845U.com
I've been a Braves fan my entire life, so it's pretty special to be drafted by your favorite team," said McKague, the 2012 Patriot League player of the year. McKague, who is 6-foot-5 and 240 pounds, said Atlanta will give him a chance to pitch and play in the field. "I'm perfectly fine with that," McKague said. "It's what I always wanted. I'll be happy to do either. I'm fortunate to have this opportunity to play professional baseball."

Ben Johnson (34): Westwood's Johnson, drafted by Braves, to stick with Longhorns
The Texas Longhorns are likely to lose a lot of their recruiting class to professional baseball, but one player they'll keep is Ben Johnson of Westwood High. Johnson was drafted by the Atlanta Braves in the 34th round Wednesday, but he and his family made it abundantly clear the center fielder will play for the college team he's always loved.

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