Billy Gasparino Says Dodgers Keeping ‘Big-Picture View’ For 2016 MLB Draft
Billy Gasparino Says Dodgers Keeping ‘big-picture View’ For 2016 Mlb Draft
Jon SooHoo-Los Angeles Dodgers

The Los Angeles Dodgers find themselves in strong position to add talent to organization through the 2016 MLB Draft. Los Angeles holds three of the first 36 picks, including No. 20 overall, and a fourth selection at No. 65.

In their first draft with the Dodgers, president of baseball operations Andrew Friedman, general manager Farhan Zaidi and scouting director Billy Gasparino went heavy on pitching early. The strategy didn’t reap immediate benefits as their first pick — Walker Buehler — underwent Tommy John surgery.

Meanwhile, Kyle Funkhouser, taken No. 35 overall by the Dodgers in the 2015 MLB Draft, elected to return for another season at Louisville.

According to Ken Gurnick of, Gasparino said losing Buehler and failing to sign Funkhouser didn’t affect the Dodgers’ outlook and focus heading into the 2016 Draft:

“Not really. Our big-picture view is the same,” he said. “Take the best talent available. Andrew [Friedman] and Farhan [Zaidi] are really supportive of that. If we don’t sign the player, we get the pick back and go find more talent next year.”

Gasparino added the Dodgers believe the crop of talent available in the range of their picks is improved from the 2015 Draft:

“I know everyone judges on the first five picks and they’re probably not as strong as people would like,” he said. “For us in the middle portion of the first round and on, it’s really strong. Player 10 to 50, we feel really good about that group. Better, I think a whole grade higher than last year in depth and talent.”

Los Angeles has a bonus pool of over $9 million for this year’s draft, which is good for ninth-highest among all clubs. It’s the most the Dodgers have had at their disposal under the system that was implemented in 2012.

They’ve naturally been linked to several pitchers — collegiate and prep — as well as intriguing options in the outfield and at third base.