To learn about our efforts to improve the accessibility and usability of our website, please visit our Accessibility Information page. Skip to section navigation or Skip to main content
Below is an advertisement.

News

Skip to main content
Brewers take Rogers in first round
Below is an advertisement.

2004 First-Year Player Draft
06/07/2004  2:04 PM ET
Brewers take Rogers in first round
High school pitcher is Milwaukee's top pick
tickets for any Major League Baseball game
Mark Rogers signed with the Brewers on Friday. (Mt. Ararat HS)

MILWAUKEE -- The Brewers did not look to a baseball hotbed for their Maine man.

With the fifth overall pick in the 2004 First-Year Player Draft, the team selected Gatorade National High School Player of the Year Mark Rogers, a right-handed pitcher from Mount Ararat High School in Topsham, Maine.

"We think he has the chance to be a power pitcher," said scouting director Jack Zduriencik, who has selected high schoolers at No. 1 in four of his five Brewers drafts. "He's got a good arm, he's a great kid physically ... I think what you have here is a kid that has a lot of upside [and is] young. We think he has a chance with all the instruction to really take off."


Complete Draft coverage >

Rogers, 19 years old and 6-foot-2, 200 pounds, works mostly with a 91-92 mph fastball that he can muscle into the mid- and upper-90s. He has a "potential hammer curveball," according to his Major League scouting report, and a circle changeup that makes him "one of the best high school pitching prospects seen in 15 years of scouting," according to the report.

In 56 innings at Mount Ararat, Rogers put up ridiculous numbers: he went 9-0 with a 0.16 ERA and a whopping 142 strikeouts. He had back-to-back 20-strikeout performances and the only game he didn't win was a no-decision in which he struck out 22.

"This player is a quality individual, great aptitude, outstanding athlete, he loves baseball, and that's the type of player we were looking for whether he's high school or college," general manager Doug Melvin said. "That interview on MLB.com that we listened to, we sat up here Saturday and listened to it, and he's quite an impressive kid."

Mark Rogers
School:
Mount Ararat School
Position: RHP   B/T: R/R
H: 6-2   W: 205
Born: 1986-01-30   Class: HS
Scouting report:
ROOM TO ADD MORE WEIGHT. BABY-FACED. MEDIUM-WIDE, SLOPED SHOULDERS. ESPECIALLY LONG ARMS. LONG TORSO. HIGH REAR. FULL WINDUP, HIGH 3/4 TO 3/4 ARM SLOT. DOES IT EASY. WHIP ARM. GOOD EXTENTION. MOST FB 91-92, LIKES TO CUT TO LHH. POTENTIAL HAMMER CB, LONG & SHORT, BOTH TIGHT. CIRCLE CHANGE SINKS WHEN DOWN. HAS AN IDEA HOW TO PITCH. ONE OF BEST HS PITCHING PROSPECTS SEEN IN 15 YR SCOUTING. TOP OF ML STAFF POTENTIAL.
Scouting video:
56K | 350K

But he is hardly a sure thing. The Brewers have selected prep pitchers at No. 1 nine times since 1969 and only one -- big right-hander Jeff D'Amico in 1993 -- made it to the Majors with the team. But even D'Amico developed injury woes and was eventually let go.

The Brewers' most recent experience with a pitcher out of high school was 2001 first-rounder Mike Jones, a right-hander with a smooth delivery who is currently sidelined with elbow soreness.

Four of the Brewers' last five picks, all made by Zduriencik, have come out of high school. The exception was 2003 first-rounder Rickie Weeks, an infielder from Southern University. The last college pitcher selected by the team was Northeast Louisiana University right-hander Ben Sheets, in 1999.

Rogers hails from Orr's Island, Maine, which in some ways presented another stumbling block. Like Wisconsin, it is a short-season state where players often go unseen by scouts, though Rogers' spectacular numbers took care of that problem. He is also a solid Division I college hockey prospect.

"We've known about Mark Rogers for a long time," Zduriencik said. "Obviously because he's from Maine and because he's in a cold weather state, you don't have the opportunity to see him as much as you would to see a kid from a warm weather state. But he's been on our radar screen since the middle of last summer."

Sixty-nine Maine-born players have made it to the Major Leagues, including Brewers reliever Matt Kinney (Bangor) and former Brewer Pete Ladd (Portland).

Rogers had a 3.9 grade-point average and signed a letter of commitment to the University of Miami as Plan B if the draft did not work out.

Last year, the Brewers held the No. 2 overall pick and selected Weeks, who eventually signed a Major League contract worth at least $4.79 million over five years that included a $3.6 million signing bonus.

In picking Rogers, the Brewers, like many other teams, passed on Long Beach State right-hander Jered Weaver, who is 15-1 with a 1.65 earned run average and 201 strikeouts in 136 innings after beating No. 1 Stanford on Saturday night. Weaver dropped to Anaheim at No. 12 because of concerns about signability.

Adam McCalvy is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

email this pageemail this page

MLB Headlines