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Monday, June 6, 2011

Drafting a Dynasty

The MLB draft is tonight and the importance of it continues to grow. The strength of this draft is pitching and the franchise that has a chance to benefit most is the Tampa Bay Rays who have 12 picks out of the first 100  Meanwhile the Yankees do not have their first pick until #51. The Red Sox boast five picks in the first 100 thanks to not re-signing Adrian Beltre and Victor Martinez. Thanks to our friends at Baseball Reference, here is a preview of the first 121 picks of the 2011 draft along with how each draft position has done historically.

Here is what the Tampa Bay Rays draft could look like based on history:

Pick 24: Terry Mulholland
Pick 31: Greg Maddux
Pick 32: Lee Lacy
Pick 38: David Wright
Pick 41: Fred Lynn
Pick 42: Dennis Leonard
Pick 52: Ralph Garr
Pick 56: Jimmy Key
Pick 59: Roger McDowell
Pick 60: Steve Garvey
Pick 75: Tino Martinez
Pick 89: Randy Johnson

That wouldn't be a bad 2011 Draft for Tampa! Obviously, those are all the best players ever drafted at each of those positions. The odds of the Rays duplicating that in one draft are slim to none but with 12 picks in the first 100 the Rays don't have to hit on all of them. If they manage to hit on 50% of them the Rays could be set up for a long time

Let's do the same now with the Boston Red Sox

Pick 19: Roger Clemens
Pick 26: Alan Trammell
Pick 36: Randy Johnson
Pick 40: Larry Gura
Pick 81: Jerry Mumphrey

I hate to pick on the Yankees, ok that is a lie, but let's take a look at what the Yankees potentially gave up by signing Rafael Soriano this past off-season against the wishes of GM Brian Cashman

Pick 31: Greg Maddux
Pick 38: David Wright

The Yankees also signed Pedro Feliciano this past offseason and by doing that their 44th pick belongs to the Mets
Pick 44: Joey Votto

Baseball does many things wrong but this is one thing they get right. Big market teams are pressured by their fan base to spend money on free agents who often time are beyond their prime. The cost is huge and the free agent rarely produces enough to justify the years and money on their new contract. The players being drafted are under the control of the franchise for several years at a minimum contract. In other words, the Rays are thankful the Yankees and Red Sox took Rafael Soriano and Carl Crawford off their hands.

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