Many of you will state that it’s way too early to grade a draft.
Many of you are right.
Here’s what you can do, though, you can take a look at what teams did today, and discuss the process. And as I’ve said millions upon millions of times, it’s about the process, not the results. If the process was done correctly, the results will come. If the process was wrong and the results are “good”, it’s blind luck. I don’t believe in rewarding blind luck.
With that being said, here’s the pass/fail grades of the teams who picked tonight, in order of picks, not in order of success.
Minnesota Twins: Byron Buxton, Jose Berrios, Luke Bard — Berrios and Bard weren’t in my top 50 — and weren’t really close. I still give it a pass because they got the best player in the draft, but this one wasn’t a slam dunk.
Seattle Mariners: Mike Zunino – The only guy I would have taken over Zunino is a guy that I don’t think would’ve signed with them. Pass
Baltimore Orioles: Kevin Gausman – Best player left on the board, easy pass.
Kansas City Royals: Kyle Zimmer – I probably would have taken Giolito or Appel, but, I’m going to go ahead and give this a very slight pass.
Chicago Cubs: Albert Almora, Pierce Johnson, Paul Blackburn — They loved Almora and he was good value, Johnson if healthy is a potential No.2, and Blackburn was coming on late as much as any prep pitcher. Gotta give it a pass
Miami Marlins: Andrew Heaney – This was difficult. I like Heaney, and he wasn’t a huge overdraft, but they passed on much better players with their only selection. I give this a fail, but again, it’s close.
Colorado Rockies: David Dahl, Eddie Butler — They took Dahl about ten spots higher than he belonged, and Butler about thirty. Not a fan of these first two picks. Fail
Oakland Athletics: Addison Russell, Daniel Robertson, Matt Olson — Mixed feelings on this draft. They took two shortstops that I think end up at third-base, and they way over-drafted Olson. I give it a pass, because I believe in the two bats ahead, but the Olson pick almost ruined it for them.
New York Mets: Gavin Cecchini, Kevin Plawecki — This one breaks my heart a little bit — because I am a Cecchini fan — but Plawecki isn’t even close to a first-day talent, no matter what crazy Purdue fans might tell you. Fail
Chicago White Sox: Courtney Hawkins, Keon Barnum – Ok, I have to commend them for their first pick, Hawkins was outstanding value at 13, but Barnum at 48? Not a top 100 player. I realized they had to take a cheap player in order to sign Hawkins, but they could have done a lot better than that. Have to give it a fail. Sorry Sox fans. Hawkins is a great pick, however.
Cleveland Indians: Tyler Naquin – We talked about Naquin a lot, and I like the player, but not at 15. Fail
Washington Nationals: Luc Giolito: Not sure I could like a pick much more than this. Pass.
Toronto Blue Jays: D.J. Davis, Marcus Stroman, Matt Smoral, Mitch Nay, Tyler Gonsalves: They didn’t kill it like they did last year — I’m not huge on Davis and Gonsalves was clearly a money pick — but Smoral and Stroman are extremely talented, and Nay has as much pop as any right-hand hitter in the draft. Pass
Los Angeles Dodgers: Corey Seager, Jesmuel Valentin: Reached on Valentin — they pretty much had to if they’re going to afford Seager — but I do think he’s an interesting player, and Seager can flat out hit. Pass
St. Louis Cardinals: Michael Wacha, James Ramsey, Stephen Piscotty, Patrick Wisdom, Steve Bean – This is a clear cut example of the new rules effecting the process of the draft. Wacha and Piscotty were fine picks, and Wisdom wasn’t horrific value either. But Ramsey and Bean? There had to be better players that would accept close to slot than that. I’m sorry, have to give it a fail.
San Francisco Giants: Chris Stratton: Perfect example of a player being drafted where he should. Nothing wrong with that. Pass.
Atlanta Braves: Lucas Sims – A bit of a cliched pick, but again, solid value.
Boston Red Sox: Deven Marrero, Pat Light, Brian Johnson — The last few years, the Red Sox have killed it. This year, they get a pass, but it’s not an impressive one. Not much upside in their class so far.
Tampa Bay Rays: Richie Shaffer — A lot of people were disappointed that the Reds took a third-baseman with Longoria in the fold. A lot of people are incorrect, Shaffer was easily the best player on the board. Pass.
Arizona Diamondbacks: Stryker Trahan: Once again, perfect value and a good fit. Pass
New York Yankees: Ty Hensley — Well done, Yankees. I knew you had it in you. Pass
Los Angeles Angels: N/A
Detroit Tigers: N/A