2012 MLB Draft Grades: 5 Teams Who Bombed the Early Rounds of the Draft

Ben AxelrodBig Ten Lead WriterJune 5, 2012

Source: MLB Daily Dish
Source: MLB Daily Dish

A draft is a place in sports where a team can completely change the course of its franchise. Look at what the Cincinnati Bengals did in 2011 with A.J. Green and Andy Dalton, or the Cleveland Cavaliers did with Kyrie Irving and Tristan Thompson. But using the draft to do this isn't the rule—in fact, it's the exception.

It's much easier for the draft to make a bad team worse than it is to make a good team great or an average team good. Odds are, there are multiple MLB teams who made themselves worse, and not better over the course of the opening rounds of this year's draft. Here's a look at who those teams might be.


Houston Astros

The team selecting first is always the hardest to evaluate in a draft, considering that it usually walks away with the best player in the pool, but the Astros may not have even accomplished that much.

Houston's new regime shocked many when it made workout warrior Carlos Correa its top selection in the draft, letting more highly-sought players such as Byron Buxton and Mark Appel slide to other teams. Correa could be an All-Star, but with the first overall pick, you're looking for more than that, and some scouts already doubt whether or not Correa could ever be a true franchise player in the big leagues.

Washington Nationals

For the third consecutive draft, the Nationals may have walked away with the best player in the draft. They may have also walked away with a player who will never pitch in the major leagues.

Source: The Los Angeles Times
Source: The Los Angeles Times

Using their first round pick on Lucas Giolito, the Nats took a player who at one time was under consideration for the No. 1 overall pick. They also took a player who has recently had elbow problems, which is never a good sign for a pitcher. Given the issues they've already had with Stephen Strasburg, it's surprising the Nationals would even consider a pitcher who's already had similar issues, especially considering that Giolito is only in high school.

Toronto Blue Jays

Canada's team may have gotten a nice athlete in speedster D.J. Davis, but that might be all it got. While the Mississippi product grades out as one of the faster players in the draft, that speed is going to be pretty meaningless if he doesn't show the ability to get on base or hit for power—both of which he had problems with at Stone County High School.

For a team that needs a face as badly as the Blue Jays do, you'd hope the team would walk away with a player who compares to somebody better than Juan Pierre and a 5'9" pitcher (Marcus Stroman), yet the Jays were unable to accomplish even this much in Monday's first round.

Kansas City Royals

What's worse than using a top five pick on a pitcher with a questionable delivery? Using a top five pick on a pitcher with a questionable delivery who's new to pitching.

Kyle Zimmer is a converted third baseman who's still learning how to pitch, however, the Kansas City Royals saw enough in him to make him the No. 5 overall pick on Monday night. This wouldn't be all that concerning, if not for the fact that it was a move made by the Kansas City Royals, who haven't made the postseason since 1985.

Milwaukee Brewers

For a team that's still trying to make up for the loss of Prince Fielder, the Brew Crew didn't exactly help their cause with a pair of less-than-stellar back-to-back picks in the first round.

With the No. 27 overall pick, the Brewers selected Clint Coulter, a catcher who lacks arm strength and the speed to play anywhere else in the field. Milwaukee followed that up by taking outfielder Victor Roach, who's coming off of a season where he didn't play in a single game due to a wrist injury. Both selections are seen as power hitters—something the Brewers desperately need. But what good will power hitters do you if they're injured or without a position to play in the National League?