The St. Louis Cardinals go into the 2012 MLB Draft with a lot of draft picks to burn—five in the first 59 picks, to be exact, thanks to the various players they lost to free agency in the offseason following their World Series victory. No pick, however, will hold quite so much narrative value as the last part of their Albert Pujols compensation—the No. 36 pick in the supplemental round. (The Cardinals also get the Los Angeles Angels' first-rounder.) In their baseball mock draft, John Sickels and Matt Garioch of our own Minor League Ball connected the Cardinals with a high school outfielder for that portentous pick.
Nick Williams is his name. He's from Texas, and ostensibly committed to the Texas Longhorns, and he's exactly the kind of toolsy, high-speed outfielder the Cardinals targeted multiple times in their 2011 draft, starting with Charlie Tilson. Garrioch likes his well-rounded set of hitting skills, and ESPNHS suggests he's got the defense for center field and some power potential.
It's hard to say who the Cardinals will draft this far ahead of draft day, but a player like Nick WIlliams would definitely fit their MO of late.