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Braves Announce First Group of Draft Singings

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The Atlanta Braves announced today that they have signed 18 of their 51 draft picks. Here is the list of players who have signed:

Draftee (Round Drafted), Position -- Current Team
Zeke Spruill, (2S), RHP -- GCL
Craig Kimbrel (3), RHP -- Danville
Braeden Schlehuber (4), C -- GCL
Paul Clemens (7), OF/RHP -- GCL
Brett Oberholtzer (8), LHP -- GCL
Kyle Farrell (9), RHP -- GCL
Richard Sullivan (11), LHP -- Danville
Ross Francis (12), RHP
Travis Adair (13), SS -- GCL
Jason Hanson (14), 3B -- GCL
William Hiller (15), OF -- GCL
Robert Brooks (20), SS -- GCL
Tyler Barnett (21), SS -- GCL
Casey Hodges (23), RHP -- Danville
Shayne Moody (24), SS -- Danville
Calvin Culver (26), OF -- GCL
Chris Sheehan (30), OF -- Danville
Adam Bullard (43), RHP

This represents a good haul for the first announcement of signings. Many of these players are already playing for the Braves in the GCL; as far as I can determine, everyone but Bullard and Francis have made an appearance for one of the two Rookie League teams for the Atlanta organization.

Spruill is a big signing, as many people thought he would be our first-round draft pick before the draft. Kimbrel was one of the first players to sign and is already serving as the closer for the Danville club. The very first player to sign was reportedly Brett Oberholtzer, rated as the best JuCo lefty in Florida.

Farrell is an intriguing player and a pitcher to keep an eye on. Another interesting pick who signed is Richard Sullivan -- he was our SCAD draftee, and the Braves apparently have enough confidence in him to assign him to their advanced Rookie league in Danville.

Many of the other picks who have signed are JuCo or 4-year college players. Jason Hanson is the only high school player other than Spruill who has signed.

One of the more interesting lower picks we have signed is 30th-round selection Chris Sheehan. He was a relatively highly ranked hitter out of Georgia Southern University. He was a junior who hit .428 with 22 homeruns. Another good year in school and he may have been a high draft pick next year -- the Braves may have gotten their first steal late in the draft.

For a recap of every one of our 2008 draft picks, click here.