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White Sox Scouting Director Doug Laumann on draftees Courtney Hawkins and Keon Barnum

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You won't see Courtney Hawkins doing this for the White Sox.
You won't see Courtney Hawkins doing this for the White Sox.

On Courtney Hawkins

They were "somewhat surprised" that Hawkins was available at #13. They thought there were "3 or 4 clubs in front of them" picking at #6 and later who would be likely to pick him.

Laumann did acknowledge that drafting a high school player was "out of the ordinary for us". But they were "always directed to take highest ceiling or impact", except when looking for a guy who can help the big league club quickly, which apparently is not the case this year.

On the back-flip, there was some hemming and hawing as Laumann tried to find the right words. Settled on "I wasn't tickled to death" with it and were "a little bit surprised". Laumann did note, however, that it showed his athleticism.

Laumann said Williams has seen Hawkins play, though it wasn't completely clear that he meant in-person.

Hawkins was at the 2011 Double Duty Classic (the high school all-star game the White Sox have hosted the past four years) and the scouts, front office, etc. had the chance to see him off the field and they were impressed with his makeup and character.

They also liked that he's been a winner and "put his team on his shoulders" - he'll be playing in the Texas state championship this weekend. Because he's still playing, they don't expect him to be in the draftee mini-camp next week and they'd like to see him sit down for a week or two because he's had a long season.

While the White Sox "have no intention of pitching him", Laumann noted that he pitched last weekend and "was 92-96 MPH off the mound". Hawkins is certainly "an athlete on the mound" and not a pitcher but that shows his arm strength

On Keon Barnum

Williams saw Barnum at a workout last week when the White Sox were in Tampa. Laumann had seen him several times and Buddy Bell saw him in a game. Noted that it's good to have Williams and other front office types see the players and be able to see that what the scouts say about a player is true.

Laumann thinks "he's athletic enough to play the outfield", obviously in one of the corners. Right now, though, the White Sox think it would be best to "not make him run around the outfield" and "run into walls" and all that. They think for now it will be better for his development to "put him at first base and let him swing it". Laumann didn't rule out a move to a corner in the future, though.

Laumann "wants him in mini-camp next week" and they think they've "laid the foundation" for him to sign quickly. Unlike Hawkins, Barnum has been done playing for a month.

On both

These two will develop "not quickly" and they're viewed as the leaders of the "next wave of group of guys".

Hawkins is more advanced but both have "huge ceilings".

When asked about what Hawkins needed to improve upon specifically, Laumann spoke generally about how "the biggest thing is making contact". Draftees generally all "have size, strength, speed" but it's how they convert those tools to skills that is important. If Hawkins and Barnum "make enough contact, they'll hit a ton of home runs".