After months of analysis and conjecture, the 2013 MLB draft is finally underway, and there were some surprising results in Round 1.
To nobody's surprise, however, Stanford's Mark Appel was the first overall pick to the Houston Astros. According to team beat writer Brian McTaggart, Appel grew up in Houston until he was 12 years old, so he'll likely be thrilled to play for his hometown squad:
Mark Appel grew up in Houston until he was 12. He must be thrilled.— Brian McTaggart (@brianmctaggart) June 6, 2013
Power-hitting slugger Kris Bryant was selected by the Chicago Cubs with the No. 2 overall pick, surprising many experts—including Jim Callis of Baseball America—who thought the team would select a pitcher:
This was just the first surprise of an exciting night of MLB draft action.
Here's a look at the entire first round, courtesy of MLB.com:
|1||Houston Astros||Mark Appel||Stanford||RHP|
|2||Chicago Cubs||Kris Bryant||University of San Diego||3B|
|3||Colorado Rockies||Jonathan Gray||Oklahoma||RHP|
|4||Minnesota Twins||Kohl Stewart||Pius X HS (TX)||RHP|
|5||Cleveland Indians||Clint Frazier||Logansville HS (GA)||3B|
|6||Miami Marlins||Colin Moran||North Carolina||3B|
|7||Boston Red Sox||Trey Ball||New Castle HS (IN)||LHP/OF|
|8||Kansas City Royals||Hunter Dozier ||Stephen F. Austin||SS|
|9||Pittsburgh Pirates||Austin Meadows||Grayson HS (GA)||CF|
|10||Toronto Blue Jays||Phillip Bickford||Oaks Christian HS (CA)||RHP|
|11||New York Mets||Dominic Smith||Sierra HS (CA)||1B|
|12||Seattle Mariners||DJ Peterson ||New Mexico||3B|
|13||San Diego Padres||Hunter Renfroe||Mississippi State||OF|
|14||Pittsburgh Pirates||Reese McGuire||Kentwood HS (WA)||C|
|15||Arizona Diamondbacks||Braden Shipley||Nevada||RHP|
|16||Philadelphia Phillies||JP Crawford||Lakewood HS (CA)||SS|
|17||Chicago White Sox||Tim Anderson||East Central CC (MS)||SS|
|18||Los Angeles Dodgers||Chris Anderson||Jacksonville||RHP|
|19||St. Louis Cardinals||Marco Gonzalez||Gonzaga||LHP|
|20||Detroit Tigers||Jonathon Crawford||Florida||RHP|
|21||Tampa Bay Rays||Nick Ciuffo||Lexington HS (SC)||C|
|22||Baltimore Orioles||Hunter Harvey||Bandys HS (NC)||RHP|
|23||Texas Rangers||Alex Gonzalez||Oral Roberts||RHP|
|24||Oakland A's||Billy McKinney||Plano West HS (TX)||OF|
|25||San Francisco Giants||Christian Arroyo||Hernando HS (FL)||SS|
|26||New York Yankees||Eric Jagielo||Notre Dame||3B|
|27||Cincinnati Reds||Phillip Ervin||Samford||OF|
|2013 MLB Draft Supplemental First Round|
|28||St. Louis Cardinals||Rob Kaminsky ||St. Joseph Regional HS (NJ) ||LHP|
|29||Tampa Bay Rays||Ryne Stanek||Arkansas||RHP|
|30||Texas Rangers||Travis Demeritte||Winder-Barrow HS (GA)||SS|
|31||Atlanta Braves||Jason Hursh||Oklahoma State||RHP|
|32||New York Yankees||Aaron Judge||Fresno State||OF|
|33||New York Yankees||Ian Clarkin ||James Madison HS (CA)||LHP|
|2013 MLB Draft Competitive Balance Round A|
|34||Kansas City Royals||Sean Manaea||Indiana State||LHP|
|35||Miami Marlins||Matt Krook||St. Ignatius HS (CA) ||LHP|
|36||Arizona Diamondbacks||Aaron Blair||Marshall||RHP|
|37||Baltimore Orioles||Josh Hart||Parkview HS (GA)||OF|
|38||Cincinnati Reds||Michael Lorenzen||Cal State Fullerton||RHP|
|39||Detroit Tigers||Corey Knebel||Texas||RHP|
Now we'll take a look at some of the biggest storylines stemming from the first round of the 2013 MLB draft.
Mark Appel No. 1 Overall
MLB didn't take long to post an awesome "draftagram" card on Twitter:
After passing on Appel last year with the top pick of the 2012 MLB draft, Houston finally landed the star pitcher out of Stanford. Appel was eventually picked up with the No. 8 overall pick by the Pittsburgh Pirates but opted instead to stay in school for his senior season.
And what a season he had for the Cardinal. Appel went 10-4 this past year, posting an ERA of 2.12 with 130 strikeouts.
The Astros won't rush Appel to the majors, however, according to McTaggart:
Luhnow says they won't rush Appel to the big leagues. Don't expect him in July, but he could move quickly— Brian McTaggart (@brianmctaggart) June 6, 2013
Given the team's current struggles, it seems like a smart move by Houston to bring him along slowly. That said, by this time next year, Appel could well be one of the hottest young pitchers in the league.
Red Sox Manage to Catch Everyone off Guard
Nobody thought Boston would select Trey Ball. Nobody even knew Ball was on Boston's radar, according to John Manuel of Baseball America:
Ball is a two-way player, excelling as a left-handed pitcher as well as an outfielder. According to Brian MacPherson of the Providence Journal, the Sox haven't picked up a two-way player since 2008 when they selected Casey Kelly:
The last two-way player the Red Sox drafted in the first round was Casey Kelly, who started as a shortstop but moved to the mound.— Brian MacPherson (@brianmacp) June 6, 2013
An intriguing prospect, Ball measures in at 6'6" and 180 pounds. He throws a fastball in the low 90s and features a strong curveball and changeup, according to MacPherson.
It will be interesting to see how this young man develops in the next few years. The Red Sox passed up high-school outfielder Austin Meadows and college pitchers Braden Shipley and Ryne Stanek—all of whom were expected to be on the club's radar for this pick.
Royals With a Huge Reach At No. 8
It was a bit of a surprise that the Cubs selected Bryant over Gray.
But that selection paled in comparison with the shocking selection the Kansas City Royals made when the franchise picked up shortstop Hunter Dozier with the No. 8 overall pick.
Keith Law of ESPN had Dozier as his No. 38 overall player:
I had Hunter Dozier ranked 38th in this draft class. The Royals just took him 8th.— keithlaw (@keithlaw) June 6, 2013
JJ Cooper of Baseball America postulated that the Royals are simply spreading their money around for later picks, which is the explanation that makes the most sense for this move:
Royals seem to be spreading their money around, saving some here for later picks, but that is an off-the-board pick.— JJ Cooper (@jjcoop36) June 6, 2013
Nobody's implying Dozier isn't going to be an excellent pro just because the Astros "reached" for him with the No. 8 pick. He was a productive player at Stephen F. Austin this past year, hitting .396 with 17 home runs and 12 stolen bases.
That said, the Royals' selection was just as shocking as when the Dallas Cowboys picked center Travis Frederick in Round 1 of the 2013 NFL draft earlier this year.
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