Draft Day 1: Analysis of every 1st-round pick

June 4th, 2019

The 2019 Draft got underway on Monday night in Secaucus, with the Orioles taking catcher Adley Rutschman with the first overall pick. Draft and prospect expert Jim Callis analyzes every pick from the first round.

The Draft continues today with Rounds 3-10. The MLB.com preview show begins at 12:30 p.m. ET, with exclusive coverage beginning at 1 p.m.



1) Orioles: Adley Rutschman, C, Oregon State

Despite all the smokescreens that the Orioles might go in another direction, they took the consensus best prospect available. It would have been very hard to pass on a switch-hitting catcher who can hit for average and power, draws a ton of walks and plays quality defense behind the plate. Plus, his makeup is off the charts. He now becomes the face of the franchise.

2) Royals: Bobby Witt Jr., SS, Colleyville (Texas) Heritage HS

No big surprise here, either. We knew the Royals loved Bobby Witt Jr., and it was an obvious pick once Rutschman was off the board. He's a rare potential five-tool shortstop who can be a 20-20 guy and will definitely stay at short. And his fastball has touched the mid-90s when he has been on the mound, so the arm strength is obvious. Scouts also rave that his instincts and makeup are even better than the tools. He and his father, Bobby Sr., who was the No. 3 overall pick by the Rangers in 1985, are now the highest drafted father-son duo ever.

3) White Sox: Andrew Vaughn, 1B, California

While there was some thought that the White Sox might prefer an up-the-middle player, they didn't overthink it, and they grabbed the best all-around hitter available. If there's a player in this Draft who is most likely to hit .300 with 30 home runs on an annual basis, it's Vaughn. Yes, he's a right-right first baseman who isn't very tall (6-foot-0), but so was Jeff Bagwell.

4) Marlins: JJ Bleday, OF, Vanderbilt

Bleday entered the year as a likely first-round pick, although more in the middle of the first round. Scouts knew he could hit and play right field, but they wanted to see him show more power. Mission accomplished. Bleday led NCAA Division I with 26 home runs entering the NCAA Tournament without losing his ability to still hit for average (.353). He immediately becomes the best offensive prospect in the Marlins system.

5) Tigers: Riley Greene, OF, Hagerty HS (Oviedo, Fla.)

The Tigers' interest in Greene was no secret. Most clubs considered him the best pure high school hitter in this class, and his power is an asset as well. He's going to be a corner guy, maybe a left fielder, but the bat should really play.

6) Padres: CJ Abrams, SS, Blessed Trinity Catholic HS (Roswell, Ga.)

As expected, the consensus top six position players went as the top six picks of the Draft. That's a record for the most hitters selected to start any Draft. Abrams is one of the best athletes and fastest runners in the high school crop, and he also has solid hitting ability with some sneaky pop. There's a little debate as to whether he's a shortstop or a center fielder in the long run, but he can make an impact at either position.

7) Reds: Nick Lodolo, LHP, Texas Christian

The top seven picks have played out like many prognosticated, and Lodolo could start a run of college pitchers with the next few picks. He improved significantly as a junior this spring, developing an effective slider after struggling to master a breaking ball in the past. He should have three solid-or-better pitches in his fastball, slider and changeup, and the control to match. He has a very high floor and is a good bet to become a No. 3 starter.

8) Rangers: Josh Jung, 3B, Texas Tech

I thought Jung was a little underrated coming in to the Draft, but apparently he wasn't if he's going eighth overall. After Rutschman and Vaughn, Jung is the next-best all-around hitter in the college class. He's hit for more average than power so far, but I think there could be 25 homers in there per season once he turns and lifts more pitches. He's a little bit of an underrated defender at third base, and the Red Raiders have also played him at shortstop this season.

9) Braves: Shea Langeliers, C, Baylor

(Compensation pick for unsigned 2018 first-rounder Carter Stewart) The Braves grabbed the best defensive catcher in the entire Draft right here. Langeliers has a chance to become a Gold Glover, with polished receiving skills, a cannon arm and more athleticism than most at his position. He struggled at the plate as a sophomore but bounced back this spring, and he should be able to hit for a decent average with some power. He could be Austin Hedges with more offense.

10) Giants: Hunter Bishop, OF, Arizona State

Bishop is the first player taken who wasn't a consensus first-round talent coming into the year. He's a tremendous athlete with one of the better power-speed combinations available, and he did a better job of tapping into that power by adopting a more disciplined approach this spring. He also proved he could handle center field and has one of the higher ceilings on the college side in this Draft.

11) Blue Jays: Alek Manoah, RHP, West Virginia

At 6-6, 260 pounds, Manoah looks the part of a power pitcher. He's physically imposing on the mound and works in the mid-90s with heavy sink and tough plane on his fastball. His hard slider gives him a second weapon that's hard to handle, and he has a solid changeup as well. The key for Manoah will be keeping his large frame in sync, but he's done a nice job of throwing more strikes this spring.

12) Mets: Brett Baty, 3B, Lake Travis HS (Austin, Texas)

Really glad to see Baty go where his talent merits, rather than people getting hung up on the fact that he's already 19 years old, which is definitely "old" for a high school draftee. Talent is talent, and he's one of the top five all-around hitters in this Draft. I have a hard time deciding if he's a pure hitter with a ton of raw power or if he's more of a slugger who also has hitting ability. I think he's got a better chance to stick at third base than some give him credit for, but the bat will play at first base if he has to move.

13) Twins: Keoni Cavaco, 3B, Eastlake HS (Chula Vista, Calif.)

Cavaco had more helium than any player in the upper first round heading into the final days before the Draft, and this proves it. He possesses an exciting package of tools, starting with his power-speed combination. He also fits the third-base profile to a T with his pop and strong arm.

14) Phillies: Bryson Stott, SS, UNLV

Here's our first college shortstop -- and get ready for about a half-dozen more to get selected in the bottom half of the first round. Stott has a chance to have a pretty solid all-around package for his position. He's going to hit for more power than the average shortstop, and he's also a solid runner and defender who should be able to stay at the position.

15) Angels: Will Wilson, SS, North Carolina State

Well, that didn't take long for our second college shortstop. Wilson is one of the best hitters among middle infielders in college baseball, and he has at least above-average raw power. He is probably going to have to move to second base at the next level, because he's a below-average runner and he is likely better suited for the other side of the bag. The good news is he has more than enough offense to fit the profile at second.

16) D-backs: Corbin Carroll, OF, Lakeside HS (Seattle)

The D-backs have four first-round picks, and they get a great value with their first one. Carroll is one of the best hitters and runners in the high school class, and he also plays a quality center field. He's not very physical, but he's not just a slappy hitter either, and has drawn comparisons to Jacoby Ellsbury and Andrew Benintendi.

17) Nationals: Jackson Rutledge, RHP, San Jacinto (Texas) JC

The best junior college prospect since Bryce Harper in 2010 (coincidentally a Nats pick as well), Rutledge spent last season at Arkansas but suffered from a hip injury and control issues. He had a breakthrough season this year after transferring to San Jacinto, sitting in the mid-90s with his fastball and reaching 99 mph while also flashing a wipeout slider and a plus curveball. He's physically imposing at 6-foot-8, though he has an unusually short arm action for someone his size.

18) Pirates: Quinn Priester, RHP, Cary-Grove HS (Cary, Ill.)

Priester might be my favorite high school pitcher in this Draft. He's a wide receiver and defensive back on the Illinois state championship football team, and that athleticism translates on the mound. He can run his fastball up to 97 mph, and scouts say his heavy two-seamer in the low 90s is even better because it has so much movement. Priester also has one of the better curveballs in the prep class, and with his athleticism and aptitude, he should be able to develop the changeup he'll need against more advanced hitters.

19) Cardinals: Zack Thompson, LHP, Kentucky

Thompson went a little lower than I expected, perhaps because he's had shoulder and elbow issues in the past. He has stayed healthy throughout 2019, establishing himself as one of the best left-handers available. Thompson's low-90s fastball tops out at 96 with running action, and both it and his low-80s slider can be plus pitches when they're on. He also has feel for spinning a curveball and throwing a changeup, and he's throwing a lot more strikes this year.

20) Mariners: George Kirby, RHP, Elon

Kirby's had a tremendous season, winning the Colonial Athletic Association Pitcher of the Year Award while leading NCAA Division I in strikeout-to-walk ratio (17.8) and walk rate (0.6 per nine innings). He has tremendous command of a low-90s fastball with running life, and he has hit 98 mph at times. He'll show flashes of both a plus curveball and slider, and also has some feel for throwing a changeup with sink. Kirby has had so much success simply by locating his fastball and he'll need to refine his secondary pitches at the next level.

21) Braves: Braden Shewmake, SS, Texas A&M

Shewmake's hand-eye coordination ranks with the best in this Draft. He's got an unorthodox approach at the plate, but he still barrels the ball with ease. He can add some more strength to his 6-foot-4 frame and has the leverage to develop at least average power. The son of Texas-Dallas coach Shane Shewmake, Braden has great instincts that help his average speed play up in the field and on the bases.

22) Rays: Greg Jones, SS, UNC Wilmington

Few college players had more helium down the stretch than Jones, who performed well against Kirby in the Colonial Athletic Association. He's a legitimate top-of-the-scale runner who creates havoc on the bases, swiping 42 bases this season in 63 games. A switch-hitter, Jones has sneaky power from both sides of the plate and an eye for drawing walks. He definitely has the arm for shortstop, but some scouts think he winds up in center field.

23) Rockies: Mike Toglia, 1B, UCLA

The Rockies weren't able to sign Toglia as a 35th-rounder out of Gig Harobor (Wash.) HS three years ago, but they'll get him now. He had an uncharacteristically slow start this spring, but the switch-hitter rebounded and got back to showing huge raw power from both sides of the plate. It'll be interesting to see what Colorado does with him defensively, because Toglia is a gifted defender at first base but also has the athleticism and solid arm to play the outfield.

24) Indians: Daniel Espino, RHP, Georgia Premier Academy (Statesboro, Ga.)

There's no question who had the best high school fastball in this Draft. Espino sits at 94-97 mph and has reached triple digits with his fastball, with nice riding action on his four-seamer and heavy sink on his two-seamer. He can overpower hitters with his low-80s slider as well, and his upper-70s curveball isn't far behind. Because of his modest size (6-foot-2, 200 pounds) and long arm action, there is a chance he ends up as a reliever, but it's unquestionably a great arm.

25) Dodgers: Kody Hoese, 3B, Tulane

Hoese hit just five home runs and went in the 35th round to the Royals as a Draft-eligible sophomore a year ago, then exploded for 23 homers this spring and bashed his way into the first round. He has a ton of right-handed pop thanks to his quality swing and the leverage in his 6-foot-4 frame. Hoese has a disciplined approach that allows him to get pitches to punish. He also moves well for his size and should be able to stick at third base.

26) Diamondbacks: Blake Walston, LHP, New Hanover HS (Wilmington, N.C.)

(Compensation for unsigned 2018 first-rounder Matt McLain) Here's an example of the D-backs -- who have 15 picks in the first 10 rounds and the largest bonus pool -- trying to wield their financial might. Walston was a star quarterback in high school, and he's an ultra-projectable left-hander who caught the attention of scouts this spring. He also has a commitment to NC State, and the D-backs might need to go over the recommended signing bonus for this slot to get him. His riding fastball ranges from 88-93 mph and will sometimes dip lower, but he can be a mid-90s guy once he fills out his athletic 6-foot-4 frame. Walston has a natural feel for spinning the ball and could have a plus curveball once he adds more power. He'll also mix in a slider and changeup and could be pretty special once he's physically mature.

27) Cubs: Ryan Jensen, RHP, Fresno State

This is the biggest surprise of the first round so far, as Jensen was ranked No. 99 on our ranking of the top 200 Draft prospects. There's a lack of college pitching in this Draft, however, and we may see more teams push some college arms up their Draft boards, as the Cubs appeared to here. Jensen has one of the best fastballs in the college class, usually working at 94-98 mph and maintaining his velocity into the late innings. The secondary stuff is inconsistent, as is his control, and he doesn't have a real big frame (6-foot, 180 pounds), so he could be a reliever.

28) Brewers: Ethan Small, LHP, Mississippi State

Here goes another college pitcher who got pushed up a little bit into the first round -- though not as far as Jensen. Small hit 96 mph with his fastball as a freshman, but he had trouble throwing strikes and then had Tommy John surgery. Since his return, he's pitched more from 86-92 mph, but guys just don't touch his fastball. Small's high three-quarters arm slot, some crossfire in his delivery, and his ability to alter his tempo throw off hitters' timing. His changeup is his second-best pitch, and his fastball is so good that there are games where he barely has to use his curve.

29) Athletics: Logan Davidson, SS, Clemson

Davidson -- whose father, Mark, played in parts of six season with the Twins and Astros -- can show you three plus tools in his raw power, speed and arm strength. He's a little bit of a divisive player, because he's been much more successful with metal bats at Clemson than he has been with wood bats in summer play. Nevertheless, he offers a lot of upside as a switch-hitter with those kind of tools at an up-the-middle position.

30) Yankees: Anthony Volpe, SS, Delbarton School (Morristown, N.J.)

This is a bit of a surprise, not so much because of talent but because Volpe was considered to be very difficult to sign away from Vanderbilt just like his high school teammate, right-hander Jack Leiter. Volpe doesn't have a true plus tool, but he can put the bat on the ball, he's a solid runner, and he makes plays at shortstop. The biggest question is going to be how much power he develops. Vanderbilt commits are typically tough to sign away from school, but I don't think the Yankees take Volpe here unless they are confident they are going to land him.

31) Dodgers: Michael Busch, INF/OF, North Carolina

(Compensation for unsigned 2018 first-rounder J.T. Ginn) Busch has some of the best pure hitting ability and one of the most disciplined approaches among the college players in this Draft crop. He should hit for average and power while also drawing a lot of walks, giving him both a higher offensive floor and ceiling than most of the collegians. It's uncertain where he's going to wind up defensively, because while he's not a bad athlete, he has fringy speed and arm strength. He probably ends up at first base or in left field, though the Dodgers announced him as a second baseman and he played there in the Cape Cod League last summer.

32) Astros: Korey Lee, C, California

That's two Golden Bears hitters in the first round, and this one was less obvious than Andrew Vaughn. That said, Lee -- who is No. 119 in our rankings -- is a catcher with plenty of power and an exceptionally strong arm in a Draft that's really light on catchers. He also improved as a hitter over the course of the season.


If a team that loses a qualifying free agent is a revenue-sharing recipient, then the team -- if and only if the lost player signs for at least $50 million -- is awarded a compensatory pick between the first round and Competitive Balance Round A. If the player signs for less than $50 million, the compensation pick for the team comes after Competitive Balance Round B.

33) Diamondbacks: Brennan Malone, RHP, IMG Academy (Bradenton, Fla.)

(Compensation for Patrick Corbin signing with the Nationals) Here go the D-backs again, using their surplus picks and the largest bonus pool of any club to take a big-time talent. Malone has got one of the best fastball-slider combos in the high school class, and he regularly works the mid-90s with his fastball. He also has some depth to his curveball, feel for a changeup, and has looked more polished as a pitcher this spring. On talent alone, Malone should have gone around the 20th pick.

34) Diamondbacks: Drey Jameson, RHP, Ball State

(Compensation for A.J. Pollock signing with the Dodgers) Jameson initially went to Ball State as a two-way player, but he took off this year as a full-time pitcher, throwing six no-hit innings against Stanford on Opening Day. A Draft-eligible sophomore, he's only 6-foot and 165 pounds, but he has a blazing fast arm that allows him to throw 93-96 mph and get up to 98. Jameson also has a pair of hard breaking balls, a curveball and slider. Though he doesn't have classic starter size, he's maintained his stuff all spring and may be able to stay in the rotation as a pro. If he winds up in the bullpen, he could hit 100 mph.


All teams that have either one of the 10 smallest markets or 10 smallest revenue pools receive an additional pick at the end of the first or second round. In 2017, six picks were assigned between the first and second rounds based on a formula that considers winning percentage and revenue. The remaining eight eligible teams received a supplemental selection between the second and third rounds. The groups of teams alternate between the two rounds each year. In 2018, there were eight Comp Round A picks and six in Round B. In 2019, there will be six Comp Round A picks and eight in Round B. Competitive Balance picks may be traded and are not subject to forfeiture.

35) Marlins: Kameron Misner, OF, Missouri

36) Rays: JJ Goss, RHP, Cypress Ranch (Texas) HS

37) Pirates: Sammy Siani, OF, William Penn Charter School (Compensation for unsigned 2018 supplemental first-rounder Gunnar Hoglund)

38) Yankees: T.J. Sikkema, LHP, Missouri (Received from Reds via trade)

39) Twins: Matt Wallner, OF, Southern Mississippi

40) Rays: Seth Johnson, RHP, Campbell (Received from A's via trade)

41) Rangers: Davis Wendzel, 3B, Baylor (Received from Brewers via trade)

Competitive balance Round A analysis:

OF Kameron Misner (Marlins) has a big league body and the best all-around tools in the college class, but he lasted 35 picks because he batted .222 with 39 strikeouts in 30 games in Southeastern Conference play . . . RHP JJ Goss (Rays) has one of the best sliders in the prep class, already reaches 96 mph with his fastball and should do more regularly once he fills out his projectable frame . . . Mike Siani signed for $2 million as a Reds fourth-rounder last year, and OF Sammy Siani (Pirates) should command a similar bonus with his left-handed hitting ability . . . LHP T.J. Sikkema (Yankees) is one of my favorite pitchers in the Draft, a tough competitor and savvy pitcher who will throw any pitch in any count, starting with a 78-83 mph high-spin slider that he manipulates well . . . OF Matt Wallner (Twins) has led Conference USA in homers in each of his three seasons (22 this year) and also can hit 97 mph with power secondary stuff as a pitcher, though a strained forearm precluded him from taking the mound this spring . . . A former shortstop who's relatively new to pitching, RHP Seth Johnson (Rays) tops out at 98 mph with his fastball, flashes a plus slider and has what one scouting director called the best delivery in the Draft . . . If Sikkema is my gut-feel pitcher, then 3B Davis Wendzel (Rangers) is my gut-feel hitter, an advanced hitter with underrated athleticism and fine instincts in all phases of the game.


42) Orioles: Gunnar Henderson, SS, John T. Morgan Academy

43) Red Sox: Cameron Cannon, SS, Arizona (Boston's top pick -- initially No. 33 -- was dropped 10 places as a penalty for being more than $40 million over the tax threshold)

44) Royals: Brady McConnell, SS, Florida

45) White Sox: Matthew Thompson, RHP, Cypress Ranch (Texas) HS

46) Marlins: Nasim Nunez, SS, Collins Hill (Ga.) HS

47) Tigers: Nick Quintana, 3B, Arizona

48) Padres: Joshua Mears, OF, Federal Way (Texas) HS

49) Reds: Rece Hinds, SS, IMG Academy

50) Rangers: Ryan Garcia, RHP, UCLA

51) Giants: Logan Wyatt, 1B, Louisville

52) Blue Jays: Kendall Williams, RHP, IMG Academy

53) Mets: Josh Wolf, RHP, St. Thomas (Texas) HS

54) Twins: Matt Canterino, RHP, Rice

55) Angels: Kyren Paris, SS, Freedom (Calif.) HS

56) D-backs: Ryne Nelson, RHP, Oregon

57) Pirates: Matt Gorski, OF, Indiana

58) Cardinals: Trejyn Fletcher, OF, Deering (Maine) HS

59) Mariners: Brandon Williamson, LHP, TCU

60) Braves: Beau Philip, SS, Oregon State

61) Rays: John Doxakis, LHP, Texas A&M

62) Rockies: Aaron Schunk, 3B, Georgia

63) Indians: Yordys Valdes, SS, McArthur (Fla.) HS

64) Cubs: Chase Strumpf, 2B, UCLA

65) Brewers: Antoine Kelly, LHP, Wabash Valley College

66) Athletics: Tyler Baum, RHP, North Carolina

67) Yankees: Josh Smith, 2B, LSU

68) Astros: Grae Kessinger, SS, Ole Miss

69) Red Sox: Matthew Lugo, SS, Carlos Beltran Baseball Academy

Second-round analysis

One of the top prep bats available, SS Gunnar Henderson (Orioles) can hit for power and average, and he has enhanced his chances of staying at short by looking quicker this spring . . . SS Brady McConnell (Royals) has three plus tools (raw power, speed, arm) and was one of the best Draft-eligible sophomores . . . Some scouts believe SS Nasim Nunez (Marlins) was the Draft's best defender at his position and he also possesses well above-average speed . . . 3B Rece Hinds (Reds) can hit a ball as far as anyone in the 2019 Draft crop, but he fell to the second round because of some swing-and-miss concerns . . . RHP Josh Wolf (Mets) projectability began to turn into present stuff this spring, as he reached 97 mph with his fastball and added power to a curveball that can be devastating . . . One of two college pitchers to record 100 strikeouts in each of the last three seasons, RHP Matt Canterino (Twins) gets whiffs with a 90-96 mph fastball, mid-80s slider and upper-70s spike curveball . . . SS Kyren Paris (Angels) is one of the youngest players in the Draft (17 years, seven months) and could have four solid tools once he's fully developed . . . LHP John Doxakis (Rays) really knows how to pitch with his lively 88-93 mph fastball and low-80s slider . . . Chase Strumpf (Cubs) homered in an NCAA tournament game minutes after his selection, a fitting celebration for an offensive-minded second baseman . . . The nephew of nine-time All-Star Carlos Beltran, SS Matthew Lugo (Red Sox) drew interest from several clubs in the bottom third of the first round because he has solid power potential and athleticism.


70) Royals: Alec Marsh, RHP, Arizona State

71) Orioles: Kyle Stowers, OF, Stanford

72) Pirates: Jared Triolo, SS, Houston

73) Padres: Logan Driscoll, C, George Mason

74) D-backs: Tommy Henry, LHP, Michigan

75) D-backs: Dominic Fletcher, OF, Arkansas (Received from Cardinals via trade)

76) Mariners: Isaiah Campbell, RHP, Arkansas (Received from Indians via trade)

77) Rockies: Karl Kauffmann, RHP, Michigan


If a team that loses a qualifying free agent does not receive revenue sharing and did not exceed the luxury-tax salary threshold the previous season, it is awarded a compensatory pick after Competitive Balance Round B.

78) Dodgers: Jimmy Lewis, RHP, Lake Travis (Texas) HS (Compensation for Yasmani Grandal, who signed with the Brewers. Milwaukee forfeited its third-round pick.)

Competitive Balance Round B & Second-Round Compensation analysis

OF Kyle Stowers (Orioles) has the potential for average to solid tools across the board . . . LHP Tommy Henry (Diamondbacks) looked like a possible first-rounder when he missed bats with a 91-94 mph high-spin fastball, a sharp slider and a fading changeup in the first six weeks of the college season, but his stuff declined afterward . . . RHP Isaiah Campbell (Mariners) throws a 91-98 mph fastball with steep downhill plane and backs it up with a low-80s slider than he can morph into a cutter . . . A Lake Travis HS teammate of Mets first-rounder Brett Baty, RHP Jimmy Lewis (Dodgers) has a projectable 6-foot-6 frame and the potential for a plus fastball and curveball.