The 2019 Draft is in the books, and while we won’t know for many years which team accrued the most Major League talent, it's never too early to begin to evaluate each team's haul. Here are seven teams who stood out, ranked in order.
The D-backs had two first-round selections and seven of the first 64 picks in 2009, which not coincidentally turned into the best Draft in franchise history. They turned five of those choices into big leaguers, most notably A.J. Pollock, and actually did more damage afterward with Paul Goldschmidt (eighth round), Chase Anderson (ninth) and Keon Broxton (third).
Arizona again had a hoard of picks this year, with four first-rounders and seven of the first 75 selections. It picked up an extra first-rounder as compensation for failing to sign Matt McLain, the 25th overall choice in 2018, and two more for the loss of free agents Patrick Corbin and Pollock.
The D-backs grabbed a lot of quality with all that quantity. They started off by selecting Washington high school outfielder Corbin Carroll with the No. 16 overall selection, gaining a player with premium hitting ability, speed and defensive skills who was bandied about as a possible top-10 pick. They spent the rest of their first-rounders on arms: ultraprojectable North Carolina left-hander Blake Walston (No. 26) and a pair of power-pitching right-handers, Florida high schooler Brennan Malone (No. 33) and Ball State's Drey Jameson (No. 34).
Arizona then took two more college pitchers, hard-throwing Oregon righty Ryne Nelson (second round) and Michigan left-hander Tommy Henry (supplemental second), who looked like a first-rounder when he was racking up swings and misses with all three of his pitches in the first half of the season. It ended the first day with Arkansas' Dominic Fletcher (supplemental second), one of the best defensive outfielders in college baseball and a possible 15-20 homer threat.
The D-backs got as many MLB Pipeline Draft Top 200 Prospects (seven) in the first two rounds as any club got in the entire Draft. They also landed more Top 200 guys (five) on the second day (rounds 3-10) than any team.
That second group includes three accomplished college hitters in Georgia Tech first baseman Tristin English (third), East Carolina first baseman Spencer Brickhouse (seventh) and Ohio State outfielder Dominic Canzone (eighth). California high school shortstop Glenallen Hill Jr. (fourth) has the raw power to do his ex-big league dad proud, while Xavier right-hander Connor Grammes (fifth) also has plenty of pop but will be a full-time pitcher because he can reach 99 mph in short stints.
Of course, any club with as much extra ammunition as Arizona had is going to look good in an immediate post mortem of the Draft. Yet the D-backs not only cleaned up with their stockpile of picks on the first day, but also when they were on an even playing field on the second day.
Armed with a pair of supplemental first-rounders, Tampa Bay led all clubs by acquiring four prospects in MLB Pipeline's Top 50. UNC Wilmington shortstop Greg Jones (first) was one of the fastest players in the Draft, and he's also a switch-hitter with sneaky pop and an eye for drawing walks. Texas high schooler J.J. Goss and Campbell's Seth Johnson are supplemental first-round right-handers with fastballs that get into the mid-90s and sliders that can be wipeout offerings. Texas A&M's John Doxakis (second) is a crafty left-hander with great feel for his lively 88-93 mph fastball and low-80s slider. The Rays added two more interesting college southpaws in Duke's Graeme Stinson (fourth), our top-rated four-year college pitcher before he missed most of the spring with a hamstring injury, and UC Santa Barbara's Ben Brecht (fifth), whose 6-foot-7 frame creates a lot of extension and deception.
Los Angeles spent its first-round choices on two of the most dangerous hitters in college baseball, Tulane third baseman Kody Hoese and North Carolina first baseman/outfielder Michael Busch, and it will try to turn the latter into a Max Muncyesque second baseman. Texas high school right-hander Jimmy Lewis (supplemental second) is very projectable at 6-foot-6 and already reaches 95 mph. Butler righty Ryan Pepiot (third) had one of the best changeups among college pitchers, while Eastern Kentucky righty Aaron Ochsenbein (sixth) had one of the top splitters -- and both can hit 96 mph with their fastballs. UC Irvine third baseman Brandon Lewis's (fourth) power translated into a school-record 14 homers this spring, and Stanford right-hander Jack Little (fifth) rode solid stuff and command to a Cardinal-record 28 career saves.
Miami began its Draft with a pair of Southeastern Conference outfielders: Vanderbilt's JJ Bleday (first), a well-rounded player who leads NCAA Division I with 26 homers, and Missouri's Kameron Misner (supplemental first), who had the best all-around tools in the college crop but slid because he struggled mightily in league play. Georgia prepster Nasim Nunez (second) possesses well above-average speed and might have been the best defensive shortstop among high schoolers. California prep right-hander Evan Fitterer (fifth) stands out for his athleticism, projectability and feel for pitching. To afford all of those guys, the Marlins used the rest of their choices in the top 10 rounds on college seniors or redshirt juniors, and they got some of the best in Wright State outfielder Peyton Burdick (third), North Carolina State first baseman Evan Edwards (fourth), Dallas Baptist right-hander M.D. Johnson (sixth) and Louisville righty Bryan Hoeing (seventh).
5. Blue Jays
The next three teams on our list deserve extra credit because they didn't have the benefit of any extra picks. West Virginia right-hander Alek Manoah (first) is a physical beast who can blow hitters away with a mid-90s fastball and a power slider. Florida high school right-hander Kendall Williams (second) has a deep repertoire and a very projectable 6-foot-6 frame. Toronto used its next nine selections on position players, including athletic Canadian prep outfielder Dasan Brown (third) and three collegians with intriguing power potential for their positions: Creighton outfielder Will Robertson (fourth), Virginia shortstop Tanner Morris (fifth) and Vanderbilt catcher Philip Clarke (ninth).
New York managed to get two of MLB Pipeline's top 17 prospects, one of the five best all-around bats in the Draft in Texas high school third baseman Bret Baty (first) and the best prep pitcher in Florida righty Matthew Allan (third). Allan has a quality fastball/curveball combination as well as a promising changeup, but he dropped because of a reported $4 million price tag. In between them, the Mets snagged another talented high school righty in Texas' Josh Wolf (second), whose stuff is similar to Allan's. To afford that trio, New York selected college seniors in rounds 4-10 and got some top-rated discount players in Mississippi State outfielder Jake Mangum (fourth), Fresno State outfield Zach Ashford (sixth) and Wichita State second baseman Luke Ritter (seventh).
Cincinnati opened by landing the consensus best pitcher in Texas Christian left-hander Nick Lodolo (first), who has three solid pitches and control to match. After that, the Reds stocked up on power with high school sluggers Rece Hinds (second) and Tyler Callihan (third) and Alabama-Birmingham right-hander Graham Ashcraft, who can reach 98 mph with his fastball. Chipola (Fla.) JC second baseman Ivan Johnson (fourth) and Grand Canyon outfielder Quin Cotton (eighth) have the offensive potential to exceed their Draft status.