part of a four-part series Perfect Game will highlight the top 10
storylines from the 2013 MLB Draft, from Perfect Game's Showcase
and Tournament events
(Jeff Dahn) as well as those from both College
(Kendall Rogers) and High
(Todd Gold) baseball.
2013 MLB Draft marked the second year under the new rules of the
current Collective Bargaining Agreement put in place to limit what
teams can spend on players with the implementation of a signing bonus
pool assigned to each team based on the number of picks they own and
at what slots. And for the second year in a row, the new rules have
done what they were intended to do: Keep bonuses down while also
giving all teams an equal and fair opportunity to select the best
players at their respective slots.
the bonuses to the balance of high school and college players, as
well as the balance between position players and pitchers, the 2013
draft was pretty balanced across the board, with very few surprises.
the new draft rules drastically reduced the number of compensation
picks awarded to teams for free agents lost during the offseason. In
2012 there were 29 supplemental first-round picks awarded to teams
that lost free agents, which essentially added another round to the
draft between the first and second rounds. In 2013 that number
dropped to six, and at this point in time there will be no more than
eight (check!) such picks in 2014.
significantly fewer compensatory selections, teams that finished with
the worst records in baseball the previous year benefit by making
their second round selections much earlier than they have in recent
same teams, as well as those that play in smaller markets, also
benefitted with the introduction of Competitive Balance Lottery
selections after the first and second rounds.
are the top 10 Perfect Game storylines from the 2013 MLB Draft:
All-Americans go early
no new record was established for the number of PG All-Americans in
the first round of the draft, as there was in both 2011 and 2012, 15
former All-Americans were taken in the first round of the 2013 MLB
Draft. Thirteen of these 15 players had participated in the 2012
Classic the summer before.
highest of such players was Golden Spikes Award winner Kris Bryant,
who enjoyed an incredible year at the University of San Diego and who
participated in the 2009 Classic. Four more All-Americans were
selected among the top 10 overall picks: Kohl Stewart, Clint Frazier,
Trey Ball and Austin Meadows.
addition, nearly half (35 of 73) of the players selected on Day 1 of
the draft (rounds 1-2) had previously attended a Perfect Game
National Showcase, including the No. 1 overall pick, Mark Appel
(2008). Twenty-five of the 35 PG National alumni had attended the
event in 2012 prior to their senior years in high school.
to most draft years are often distinguished by what players at what
levels and overall positions define the year's strengths and
weaknesses. The 2013 draft proved to be very balanced, with nearly an
equal number of high school and college players taken early, as well
as position players as compared to their pitching counterparts.
the first round, 15 players were drafted out of high school as
compared to 17 from college, with one player being drafted from the
junior college ranks (Tim Anderson). Eighteen of the 33 first-round
picks were position prospects and 15 were pitchers.
the top 105 overall selections (top three rounds) that trend for the
most part continued. Of those picks 48 were drafted out of high
school, 51 from college and six from junior college. Fifty of the top
105 selections were position prospects and 55 were pitchers.
slight preference toward college players early was a shift from 2012,
when 35 of the top 60 players selected hailed from the prep ranks.
Pirates load up after missing on Appel
failing to sign their top pick in the 2012 draft, Mark Appel, who
fell to the eighth overall pick after entering the spring as one of
the favorites to go first overall, the Pittsburgh Pirates were
awarded the ninth overall pick in the 2013 draft as compensation.
They used that pick to take five-tool PG All-American outfielder
Austin Meadows, and followed that selection with another All-American
player from the prep ranks, catcher Reese McGuire, with the 14th pick.
two players signed for nearly $5.4 million, just $200,000 less their
combined slot value, and bolster an already strong Pirates farm
system for an organization whose parent club finished the 2013 season
over .500 for the first time since 1992 and advanced to the
postseason. 2004 PG All-American Andrew McCutchen, the only player to
record four hits in the Classic, was named the National League's Most
College trio surges toward top
the most part, the highest ranked players that entered the spring
scouting season ended up being selected at or near the top of the
draft. A trio of college players, Oklahoma's Jonathan Gray,
Mississippi State's Hunter Renfroe and Nevada's Braden Shipley,
enjoyed huge springs to become premium draft picks.
three players were rated among Perfect Game's initial ranking
of the top 100 draft-eligible prospects for 2013 back in January.
Renfroe, who was named the Cal Ripken League's top prospect each of
the previous two summers, was ranked 26th entering the spring only to be selected 13th overall by the Padres after posting huge numbers for the Bulldogs.
ranked 58th in the preseason, soared up to the No. 3 overall pick (Rockies)
thanks to a big spike in fastball velocity, in which he routinely
reached or topped triple digits. Gray, along with Appel and Bryant,
was among those being considered by the Houston Astros for the No. 1
middle infielder Braden Shipley, ranked 88th in the preseason, continued to make huge strides as a primary
pitcher, sitting in the low- to mid-90s allowing him to go 15th overall to the Arizona Diamondbacks.
Blue Jays miss on first round pick after recent boon
13 first and supplemental first-round picks the three previous draft
years (2010-12), and 24 combined picked in the top three rounds
during that time, the Toronto Blue Jays found themselves in an
unfamiliar position in 2013 with no extra, early picks. Because of
that, it came as a mild surprise that the team was unable to bring
its first round pick, Phil Bickford, in the fold after taking him
with the 10th overall selection.
said, Bickford was viewed as one of, if not the most unsignable
players eligible for the draft, who reportedly had indicated to teams
that he fully intended to honor his commitment to Cal State
Blue Jays will be in a much more familiar position in 2014, as they
were awarded the 11th overall pick in next year's draft for not signing Bickford in
addition to owning the ninth overall selection.
Angels sign all but one pick
the first time since 1985 (Los Angeles Dodgers) the Los Angeles
Angels signed all but one of their 39 selections. Their lone unsigned
pick came in the form of 12th-round pick Blake Goins who opted to
honor his commitment to play for the Texas Longhorns. It should be
noted that the Angels forfeited their first-round pick after signing
outfielder Josh Hamilton during the 2012-13 offseason.
Chicago White Sox signed their first 32 picks, followed by the
Mariners inking their top 31 selections and the Cardinals coming to
terms with their first 28 picks.
Royals creatively make room for Manaea
first and biggest surprise in the draft came in the form of Stephen
F. Austin shortstop Hunter Dozier, who was selected by the Kansas
City Royals with the eighth overall pick. Dozier, who entered the
spring ranked as Perfect Game's 143rd best player eligible for the 2013 draft, improved that ranking to
PG's 42nd pre-draft player thanks to a year in which he hit
.396-17-52 for the Lumberjacks.
many expected Dozier to taken in to the latter half of the first
round, it seemed obvious that the Royals had an ace up their sleeve
by taking Dozier as high as they did. That ace came in the form of
Indiana State's Sean Manaea with the 34th overall selection, the Royals' competitive balance lottery selection
and the first-ever such pick in the history of the draft.
entered the spring as Perfect Game's No. 1 overall ranked
draft-eligible prospect, although a nagging hip injury, and
subsequent shoulder tightness, led to him falling in the draft.
Royals signed Manaea for $3.55 million, well over the allotted value
for the slot. They did save roughly $900,000 by signing Dozier well
below slot value, and made up the rest of the gap by giving their
fifth through ninth round picks nearly $750,000 collectively less
than their combined slot values.
addition to signing Manaea, the Royals gave six players they selected
and signed after the 10th round a bonus of $100,000, the
maximum amount teams are allowed to spend on picks after the 10th round without those bonuses counting toward the team's draft pool.
Mark Appel goes No. 1, finally
being considered one of the favorites to go No. 1 overall in the 2012
draft, and doing nothing but solidifying that with a strong junior
campaign, Mark Appel opted to return to Stanford after falling to the
eighth overall pick of the 2012 draft as detailed above. With yet
another strong season as a senior serving as Stanford's ace, the
Houston Astros, who initially passed on Appel with the No. 1 pick in
2012, made the Houston native their pick the second time around.
nearly doubled his professional signing debut, signing for $6.35
million. That amount was nearly $1.5 million less than the value
Major League Baseball assigned to the No. 1 overall pick, but was
over $2.5 million more than what the Pirates offered him a year ago.
Few surprises early
noted with the Kansas City Royals and their early picks, including
both Hunter Dozier and Sean Manaea, there were very few, if any,
surprises early in the draft. Even in the case of Manaea, given his
injury situation leading up to the draft it was speculated that he
could be one player that fell further than expected come draft day,
even much further past where the Royals ended up selecting him.
of the top 10 picks were ranked among Perfect Game's final top 50 prospects. Two of the other
three, Ryne Stanek and Braden Shipley, were both selected in the
first round, with Manaea going 34th overall. Twenty-eight of the 33 players selected in the first round
of the draft were also ranked among the top 33 players in that final
ranking, and 40 of those 50 players were selected on the first day
(top two rounds) of the 2013 draft.
top six players as ranked (Jonathan Gray, Mark Appel, Kris Bryant,
Clit Frazier, Kohl Stewart and Colin Moran) went with the Nos. 3, 1,
2, 5, 4 and 6 picks respectively.
of this points to the fact that the new rules, including the assigned
draft pools, are doing exactly what Major League Baseball intended
them to do. Teams aren't as fearful of players not signing under the
new system, and for the most part are selecting those players based
on their talents and not a combination of their talents and
addition, with the exception of Phil Bickford – who as noted above
made it be known prior to the draft that he intended to honor his
commitment to Cal State Fullerton – Matt Krook and Ben DeLuzio,
every pick in the top three rounds signed with the teams that drafted
them. In the case of Krook, the Marlins had every intent of signing
him when they selected him 35th overall, but when he
failed his physical in June the Marlins offered him a reduced bonus
offer, of which Krook rejected instead opting to play collegiately at
surprisingly in a year with little surprises and with balance and
overall stability, the bonuses as put in place by Major League
Baseball held. Only two of the 33 players selected in the first round
signed for bonuses higher than their slot values – Alex Gonzalez
and Travis Demeritte.
of the 33 players taken in the first round signed for exactly slot
value, while everyone else signed for a bonus amount less than the
allotted slot value, including the No. 1 overall pick, Mark Appel, as
11 teams spent more than their assigned draft pool, and only six of
those teams – the Braves, Cardinals, Cubs, Dodgers, Giants and
Mariners – came close to the 5-percent threshold that teams are
penalized for exceeding their pool.