CNN Time Free Email US Sports Baseball Pro Football College Football 1999 NBA Playoffs College Basketball Hockey Golf Plus Tennis Soccer Motorsports Womens More Inside Game Scoreboards World
EVENTS
MLB Playoffs
Rugby World Cup
Century's Best
Swimsuit '99

CENTERS
 Fantasy Central
 Inside Game
 Multimedia Central
 Statitudes
 Your Turn
 Teams
 Cities

AD PARTNERS

  Power of Caring
  presented by CIGNA


SPORTS ILLUSTRATED
 This Week's Issue
 Previous Issues
 Special Features
 Life of Reilly
 Frank Deford
 Subscriber Services
 SI for Women

FEATURES
 Trivia Blitz
 Free Email

TELEVISION
 CNN/SI - TV
 Turner Sports

SHOPPING
 CNN/SI Travel
 Golf Pro Shop
 MLB Gear Store
 NFL Gear Store

SI FOR KIDS
 Sports Parents
 Games
 Buzz World
 Shorter Reporter

SITE RESOURCES
 About Us
 myCNN
 
1998 mlb draft

draft list projected top picks past no.1s

Phillies look for better luck with Burrell

Click here for more on this story

Posted: Wednesday June 2, 1998 01:04 PM

  Burrell had a batting average of .442 and hit 60 homers in three seasons at Miami (AP)

PHILADELPHIA (CNN/SI) -- The Philadelphia Phillies no longer hold J.D. Drew's draft rights, but the controversial outfielder just won't go away.

Chosen by the Phillies with the second overall pick last year, Drew refused to sign with Philadelphia, demanding $10 million guaranteed -- $6 million more than the team's final offer.

St. Louis, obviously aware of Drew's demands, selected him with the fifth pick. Burrell clearly will be watching Drew's negotiations.

"I think at this point, it's very premature to speculate," Phillies scouting director Mike Arbuckle said. Jeff Moorad, Burrell's agent, did not immediately return a call seeking comment.

But Arbuckle acknowledged the Phillies would like to get Burrell under contract as soon as possible.

"If we wait for St. Louis, that will really slow the process down," Arbuckle said. "We view [Drew] as a unique situation. Obviously we did or that player would have signed."

Last year's No. 1 pick, Matt Anderson got a $2,505,000 bonus to sign with the Detroit Tigers.

The Phillies believe Burrell, a right-handed hitter from the University of Miami, is signable, said Arbuckle.

"Based on recent history, no one will jump up and sign right away," Arbuckle said. "It becomes a logjam until two or three players sign to break it. It might take the better part of the summer, but we feel it will get done."

Burrell learned of his selection before Miami played Long Beach State in a College World Series elimination game in Omaha, Nebraska.

"I'm very happy to become a Philadelphia Phillie," he said. "I'm thrilled to have been selected. It is an honor to be the first pick overall, and I look forward to playing professional baseball."

A third baseman at Miami, Burrell may switch to first because the Phillies already have a third baseman: 23-year-old Scott Rolen, last year's NL Rookie of the Year.

No problem, according to Burrell.

"I've had experience with that position before, and it's something I'm comfortable with," he said.

The Phillies are more concerned with getting Burrell's bat in their lineup than where he'll play in the field.

Rated the best hitter and best power hitter in college ball by Baseball America, Burrell has a career slugging percentage of .888, second on the NCAA's career list behind former-Phillie Pete Incaviglia's .915.

The 6-4, 21-year-old has a batting average of .442, seventh on the NCAA list, and 60 homers in three seasons at Miami.

Burrell has "abundant and impressive raw power with remarkable bat speed that generates consistent power to all fields," according to a report by Phillies scout Miguel Machado.

The Phillies hit a major league-low 116 homers last year. Only Minnesota, Tampa Bay and Pittsburgh had fewer homers than the Phillies' 45 going into Tuesday night.

"Obviously, he's a player who's a middle-of-the-lineup type of guy," Arbuckle said.

 

Related information
Stories
Phillies like Miami's Burrell
Projected First-Round Draft Picks
FSU coach says Drew made the right choice
Stats
1998 First-Round Draft List
Multimedia
Click here for the latest audio and video
Search our siteWatch CNN/SI on cable 24 hours a day

Sports Illustrated and CNN have combined to form a 24 hour sports news and information channel. To receive CNN/SI at your home call 1-888-53-CNNSI.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.



To the top

Copyright © 1999 CNN/SI. A Time Warner Company.
All Rights Reserved.

Terms under which this service is provided to you.
Read our privacy guidelines.