So today is the 2013 MLB player draft. I started thinking about that last night, as well as the following non-subliminal message Sandy Alderson has sent out since the 2012 season ended.
The world begins in 2014!
That got me thinking ahead to a year from now, and the 2014 player draft. One good thing about Sandy’s quick kick (just don’t call it punting) of 2013 is we are going to get a high protected pick in 2014. I mean, c’mon, we are not beating out ten teams this year. So I held my breath and looked at the standings, and sure enough heading into last nights games we had the fourth worst record in all of baseball. Since we are suffering through some pretty bad baseball to “earn” the right to pick fourth next year I wanted to get an idea of the potential long-term payoff. I know the draft is hard to nail and that even picking that high there would be some hits and some misses. So I took a look. The list below are all of the players selected fourth in the country from 2003 – 2012, as well as a brief comment on their careers to-date.
- 2003 – Tim Stauffer – San Diego (Made it to the big club, in his eighth mediocre season)
- 2004 – Jeff Niemann – Tampa Bay (Has been a solid back-end starting pitcher, currently on the DL)
- 2005 – Ryan Zimmerman – Washington (Star major league third baseman)
- 2006 – Brad Lincoln – Pittsburgh (Aaron Laffey lite)
- 2007 – Daniel Moskos – Pittsburgh (Not as good as Lincoln)
- 2008 – Brian Matusz – Baltimore (Failed as a starting pitcher, has found success as a situational lefty for the Orioles)
- 2009 – Tony Sanchez – Pittsburgh (25 years old and no MLB experience to-date)
- 2010 – Christian Colon – Kansas City (24 years old .636 OPS in the PCL this season)
- 2011 – Dylan Bundy – Baltimore (Has not pitched in 2013 due to elbow issues)
- 2012 – Kevin Gausman – Baltimore (Recently called up to the majors by the Orioles)
I found this list a little depressing. Only one star so far (Zimmerman, although Bundy and Gausman are still both touted) and only three players that you could charitably call above average major leaguers (Zimmerman again, Niemann, and Matusz.) The biggest thing that jumps out at me is no wonder Pittsburgh didn’t sign their pick last year! I can’t blame them for not thinking they could get things right at number ten last year since they blew the third pick three times in ten years.
And so I went back and checked and can save you the trouble. The fifth picks in those three years were Brandon Morrow, Matt Wieters, and Matt Hobgood. Hobgood has had arm troubles and has not progressed past A ball but the other two players would jump right up under Zimmerman at the top of this collection. So if you eliminate the “Pirate factor” it looks a little sunnier.
There you go, as you watch the 2013 Mets stumble and bumble through the season, remember, it’s not just about getting to see the Latroy Hawkins farewell tour. It’s also about a shot at the next Stauffer or Moskos!
It will all be worth it someday.
Just ask a Pirates fan.