Re-Grading All 30 MLB Teams on the 2009 MLB Draft

Karl BuscheckContributor IIIFebruary 5, 2014

Re-Grading All 30 MLB Teams on the 2009 MLB Draft

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    Patrick McDermott/Getty Images

    The 2009 MLB draft will be remembered as the time that the Washington Nationals selected Stephen Strasburg with the No. 1 overall pick and when the Los Angeles Angels landed Mike Trout with the No. 25 selection.

    In the end, though, it was neither the Nationals nor the Angels who walked away from that draft with the most impressive collection of talent.

    The 2009 draft occurred almost five years ago, which makes now an ideal time to go back and re-grade all 30 MLB teams on their selections. The grading is based on the amount of big league production each team has received from its respective draft class.

    That means teams get credit for draft picks who were ultimately traded away in exchange for major league players. Plus, teams get downgraded for early-round picks who have turned into busts—at least for now.

    The list begins with the teams that graded out the lowest and ends with the clubs that received the highest grades of all.


    Note: Stats and draft results courtesy of

Tampa Bay Rays

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    Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sport

    Notable Selections: OF LeVon Washington (First Round), LHP Zac Rosscup (28th)


    Draft Review

    The 2009 MLB draft has been an absolute bust for the Tampa Bay Rays. 

    The team selected Washington with the No. 30 overall pick but never managed to agreed to terms with the talented outfielder. As compensation for failing to sign Washington, the Rays drafted catcher Justin O'Conner with the No. 31 overall pick in the 2010 draft.

    Last season, O'Conner hit .233 for the Rays' Single-A affiliate. Meanwhile, Washington, who ultimately ended up with the Cleveland Indians, posted a .997 OPS between Rookie League and Single-A. 

    Draft Grade: D

Baltimore Orioles

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    Gail Burton/Associated Press

    Notable Selections: RHP Matt Hobgood (First), RHP Randy Henry (Fourth)


    Draft Review

    The 2009 MLB draft did not go as planned for the Baltimore Orioles.

    The club grabbed 50 players in the draft but so far none have reached the major leagues. With the No. 5 overall pick, the team selected Hobgood, a high school right-hander who has so far yet to advance beyond Single-A.

    With the No. 6 overall pick, the San Francisco Giants also took a high school right-hander named Zach Wheeler. So, clearly that pick hasn't worked out so well for Baltimore. 

    The most promising member of the class to this point has been Henry, whom the Orioles picked up in the fourth round. Last season, the right-hander posted a 1.07 ERA in 31 games for the Orioles' Double-A affiliate. 

    Draft Grade: D

New York Mets

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    Frank Franklin II/Associated Press

    Notable Selections: LHP Steven Matz (Second)


    Draft Review

    The New York Mets' 2009 draft class has so far produced zero big league players. 

    The club didn't even have a first-round pick after that selection had been forfeited to the Los Angeles Angels, when the Mets had signed free-agent closer Francisco Rodriguez.

    The team's second-round pick, Matz, is still a name to watch out for, though. Last year while pitching for the Mets' Single-A affiliate in the South Atlantic League, Matz posted some impressive numbers. The left-hander went 5-6 with a 2.62 ERA in 21 starts while posting a 10.2 K/9 ratio. 

    Draft Grade: D

Los Angeles Dodgers

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    Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports

    Notable Selections: LHP Aaron Miller (First), RHP Steve Ames (17th)


    Draft Review

    If not for the selection of Ames in the 17th round, the 2009 MLB draft would have been a complete failure for the Los Angeles Dodgers.

    Despite the fact that the right-hander never appeared in a game for the Dodgers, Ames was one of three players shipped off to the Miami Marlins last summer for Ricky Nolasco. So, at least he provided value as a trade chip. 

    Meanwhile, the left-hander, Miller, a player the club took with the No. 36 overall pick, has since transitioned to the outfield. 

    Draft Grade: D

Boston Red Sox

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    Jared Wickerham/Getty Images

    Notable Selections: OF Reymond Fuentes (First), RHP Alex Wilson (Second), 1B Chris McGuiness (13th)


    Draft Review

    Three players from the Boston Red Sox's 2009 draft class have reached the major leagues, but only Wilson has done so with the Red Sox. 

    The Red Sox did manage to use Fuentes and McGuiness as valuable trade chips, though. Fuentes was one of the players that Boston sent to the San Diego Padres in exchange for Adrian Gonzalez. McGuiness was one of the pieces that the Red Sox traded to the Texas Rangers in order to acquire Jarrod Saltalamacchia. 

    Draft Grade: C-

Chicago White Sox

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    GAIL BURTON/Associated Press

    Notable Selections: OF Jared Mitchell (First), C Josh Phegley (First), LHP David Holmberg (Second)


    Draft Review

    The players selected by the Chicago White Sox in the 2009 MLB draft have so far produced a minimal impact for the club. 

    Phegley has the most extensive MLB resume to this point. Last season, the catcher hit .204 with four home runs while appearing in 65 games. 

    Mitchell, who was the club's first pick in 2009, spent the 2013 season playing for the White Sox's Double-A and Triple-A affiliates, where he hit a combined .167. The White Sox selected the centerfielder two spots ahead of where the Los Angeles Angels drafted Mike Trout. 

    Draft Grade: C-

New York Yankees

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    Frank Franklin II/Associated Press

    Notable Selections: OF Slade Heathcott (First), C J.R. Murphy (Second), RHP Adam Warren


    Draft Review

    The New York Yankees have yet to receive much of a return from the players they picked in the 2009 draft. Heathcott, whom the Yankees selected with the No. 29 overall pick, is still woking his way through the minor league system. Last year, the outfielder advanced to Double-A, where he hit .261. 

    Warren is the only member of the class of 2009 who has provided the Yankees with any meaningful production as a major leaguer. The right-hander went 3-2 with a 3.39 ERA for the Yankees in 2013 and will be part of the competition for the No. 5 spot in the rotation this spring. 

    Draft Grade: C-

San Diego Padres

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    Eric Risberg/Associated Press

    Notable Selections: OF Donavan Tate (First), RHP Miles Mikolas (Seventh), 1B Nate Freiman (Eighth) 


    Draft Review

    The 2009 MLB draft has proven to be a major disappointment for the San Diego Padres. 

    San Diego held the No. 3 overall pick, which the team spent on Tate. The outfielder has now spent four seasons in the Padres minor league system and has so far hit .238/.355/.320. 

    The only two players from the draft to reach the major leagues are Mikolas (who has now been traded twice) and Freiman, who currently plays for the Oakland Athletics. 

    Draft Grade: C-

Detroit Tigers

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    Wilfredo Lee/Associated Press

    Notable Selections: RHP Jacob Turner (First), LHP Andy Oliver (Second), LHP Adam Wilk


    Draft Review

    The Detroit Tigers selected Turner with the No. 9 overall pick in the 2009 MLB draft. To this point, the right-hander has been by far the most valuable pick that the Tigers made. 

    Turner's stat line with Detroit is unimpressive, as he posted an 8.28 ERA across six starts. However, the right-hander was one of three players that the club shipped to the Miami Marlins in exchange for Omar Infante and Anibal Sanchez. 

    Draft Grade: C-

Houston Astros

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    Bob Levey/Getty Images

    Notable Selections: SS Jiovanni Mier (First), LHP Dallas Keuchel (Seventh), OF J.D. Martinez (20th)


    Draft Review

    To this point, the 2009 MLB draft has essentially been a bust for the Houston Astros. Keuchel and Martinez are the only two players the team selected in the draft that have made their big league debuts. 

    Keuchel will be in the hunt for a rotation spot this spring, while Martinez is a non-roster invitee with a shot at earning a reserve role as an outfielder.

    The biggest miss for the club has to be Mier. The club selected the shortstop with the No. 21 overall pick while players like Trout and Nick Franklin remained on the board. In 2013, Mier hit .194 while playing for the Astros' Double-A affiliate. However, at just 22, the clock isn't up on the first-round selection.

    Draft Grade: C

Miami Marlins

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    Genevieve Ross/Associated Press

    Notable Selections: LHP Chad James (First), RHP A.J. Ramos (21st)


    Draft Review

    The only player to make the major leagues from the Miami Marlins' 2009 draft class has been Ramos. The reliever has been a key contributor to the Marlins thanks to his ability to produce big-time strikeout numbers. Last season, Ramos reeled off 99 strikeouts in 89.1 innings of work.  

    With the No. 18 overall pick in the 2009 draft, the Marlins selected James. The left-hander has so far yet to advance beyond Single-A. With the very next pick in the draft, the St. Louis Cardinals picked Shelby Miller. 

    Draft Grade: C

Chicago Cubs

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    Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images

    Notable Selections: OF Brett Jackson (First), 2B DJ LeMahieu (Second), LHP Chris Rusin (Fourth), LHP Brooks Raley


    Draft Review

    So far, the 2009 MLB draft has been a dud for the Chicago Cubs. However, there's still time for that to change. 

    The most successful big leaguers the team selected have been LeMahieu (traded to the Colorado Rockies) and Rusin. The left-handed Rusin offers plenty of upside as he went 2-6 with 3.93 ERA for the Cubs in 2013.

    Jackson, who was the No. 31 overall pick in 2009, also still has time to become a big league contributor. The outfielder suffered through an injury-plagued campaign in 2013 after making his MLB debut in August of 2012. 

    Chicago's director of scouting and player development, Jason McLeod, explained to Carrie Muskat of that Jackson will be healthy and ready to go for the start of spring training. 

    Draft Grade: C

Pittsburgh Pirates

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    Justin K. Aller/Getty Images

    Notable Selections: C Tony Sanchez (First), RHP Vic Black (First), INF Brock Holt (Ninth), RHP Phil Irwin (21st)


    Draft Review

    The returns from the 2009 MLB draft have so far been limited for the Pittsburgh Pirates. The club spent the No. 4 overall pick on Sanchez, who made his MLB debut last season and who is currently the team's third-string catcher.

    The Pirates also selected Black early on in the draft. Last summer, the Pirates sent the right-hander to the New York Mets as part of the trade that brought back Marlon Byrd and John Buck. 

    Draft Grade: C

Texas Rangers

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    Tom Pennington/Getty Images

    Notable Selections: LHP Matt Purke (First), RHP Tanner Scheppers (First), LHP Robbie Erlin (Third),


    Draft Review

    So far, just two of the players selected by the Texas Rangers during the 2009 MLB draft have made their way to the big leagues. 

    Scheppers, however, appears to be in line for an excellent MLB career. The right-hander went 6-2 with a 1.88 ERA and a 220 ERA+ in 76 games out of the Rangers bullpen last season.  

    Draft Grade: C

Philadelphia Phillies

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    Matt Slocum/Associated Press

    Notable Selections: OF Kelly Dugan (Second), RHP Josh Zeid (10th), 1B/OF Darin Ruf (20th)


    Draft Review

    The Philadelphia Phillies didn't have a first-round pick in the 2009 MLB draft as a result of the club's decision to sign away free-agent outfielder Raul Ibanez from the Seattle Mariners. 

    That means that the Phillies' first selection was outfielder Kelly Dugan in the second round. In 2013, Dugan posted the best numbers of his entire minor league career. The outfielder began the year in Single-A but finished it in Double-A as he hit .291/.352/.506 with 20 home runs and 24 doubles. 

    As far as big league production is concerned, Ruf has been by far the most valuable player. Last year, the first baseman/outfielder hit 14 home runs and posted an .806 OPS. 

    Draft Grade: C

Minnesota Twins

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    Paul Battaglia/Associated Press

    Notable Selections: RHP Kyle Gibson (First), C Chris Herrmann (Sixth), 2B Brian Dozier (Eighth) 


    Draft Review

    Of all the Minnesota Twins draft picks from the 2009 class, Dozier has enjoyed the most success at the big league level. The second baseman hit 18 home runs in 2013, which is the club record for a player at that position, according to Brandon Speck of Fox Sports North

    Gibson will also be a player to watch out for moving forward. General manager Terry Ryan described the starter and former No. 22 overall pick as a "big piece of the future" via Grant Freking of the Greenfield Daily Reporter

    Draft Grade: C+

Seattle Mariners

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    Elaine Thompson/Associated Press

    Notable Selections: INF/OF Dustin Ackley (First), 2B Nick Franklin (First), 3B Kyle Seager (Third), LHP Anthony Vasquez (18th), C Brandon Bantz (30th)


    Draft Review

    With a .669 OPS through the first three seasons of his big league career, former No. 2 overall pick Dustin Ackley has been been a major disappointment. However, the former top prospect can't be labeled a bust just yet, as he did hit .304/.374/.435 during the second half of the 2013 season.

    Fellow first-rounder Franklin has also yet to establish himself in the major leagues after he slumped badly during the second half of his rookie season in 2013.

    Seager, however, has outplayed both first-round picks by swatting 42 home runs over the past two seasons for the Mariners. 

    Draft Grade: C+

Cleveland Indians

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    Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

    Notable Selections: RHP Alex White (First), 2B Jason Kipnis (Second), RHP Cory Burns (Eighth), RHP Preston Guilmet (Ninth)


    Draft Review

    Kipnis is by far the most recognizable player to come out of the Cleveland Indians' 2009 draft class. 

    The second baseman enjoyed his best season to date in 2013, as he hit .284/.366/.452 with 17 home runs and 30 stolen bases. However, outside of the 2013 All-Star, the class looks light, and for that reason the grade remains low. 

    Draft Grade: C+

Toronto Blue Jays

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    Notable Selections: RHP Chad Jenkins (First), OF Jake Marisnick (Third), 2B Ryan Goins (Fourth), RHP Aaron Loup (Ninth), C Yan Gomes (10th), RHP Drew Hutchison (15th), RHP Daniel Webb (18th)


    Draft Review

    The Toronto Blue Jays made a great selection when they nabbed Gomes in the 10th round of the 2009 MLB draft. The catcher had a breakout season in 2013 as he hit .294 with a .826 OPS and a 133 OPS+.

    Of course, Gomes posted those numbers for the Cleveland Indians after getting traded to the Tribe with Mike Aviles in exchange for Esmil Rogers back in 2012. 

    As for the rest of the class, Loup has posted a 2.52 ERA across 97 games for the Blue Jays. Goins will also be a name to watch out for, as he has the inside track to become the club's starting second baseman in 2014. 

    Draft Grade: B-


    Note: Video courtesy of MLB Advanced Media

Colorado Rockies

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    Notable Selections: LHP Rex Brothers (First), 3B Nolan Arenado (Second), RHP Rob Scahill (Eighth) 


    Draft Review

    The Colorado Rockies picked up a couple of valuable pieces during the 2009 MLB draft. 

    Brothers, who the team drafted during the first compensation round, has already become a dominant force in the Rockies bullpen. The left-hander went 2-1 with a 1.74 ERA and a 10.2 K/9 ratio last year in 72 appearances. 

    Meanwhile Arenado has already grabbed a Gold Glove award thanks to his sensational defensive skills, as can be seen above. 

    Draft Grade: B


    Note: Video courtesy of MLB Advanced Media

Oakland Athletics

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    Notable Selections: INF Grant Green (First), C Max Stassi (Fourth), LHP Ian Krol (Seventh), PHP Sam Dyson (10th), RHP Dan Straily (24th)


    Draft Review

    Five players selected by the Oakland Athletics in the 2009 MLB draft have made their way to the big leagues, although just two have done so with the Athletics. 

    Straily has been by far the most successful pick. The right-handed starter went 10-8 with a 3.96 ERA for the club in 2013, as he landed in fourth place on the AL Rookie of the Year ballot. If Straily builds on that success in 2014, this grade will only go up. 

    Draft Grade: B


    Note: Video Courtesy of MLB Advanced Media

Cincinnati Reds

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    Notable Selections: RHP Mike Leake (First), RHP Brad Boxberger (First), OF Billy Hamilton (Second), LHP Donnie Joseph (Third)


    Draft Review

    Each of the Cincinnati Reds' first four picks from the 2009 MLB draft have advanced to the major leagues.

    Leake, a pitcher the Reds drafted No. 8 overall, has been the most successful to this point. In four seasons for the Reds, the starter owns a career 3.99 ERA. 2013 was Leake's best season yet, as he went 14-7 with a 3.37 ERA.  

    Hamilton should also be a major contributor for Cincinnati moving forward. The switch-hitter, who is slated to be the Reds' leadoff man and center fielder in 2014, stole 13 bases during a 13-game cameo last season. 

    Draft Grade: B


    Note: Video courtesy of MLB Advanced Media. 

Milwaukee Brewers

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    Keith Srakocic/Associated Press

    Notable Selections: SS Josh Prince (Third), RHP Hiram Burgos (Sixth), OF Khris Davis (Seventh) 1B Sean Halton (13th), 2B Scooter Gennett (16th), LHP Caleb Thielbar, RHP Mike Fiers


    Draft Review

    The Milwaukee Brewers' No. 1 overall selection, Eric Arnett, has been an utter bust, but the 2009 MLB draft has actually worked out quite nicely for the club. 

    Davis hit .279/.353/.596 for the Brewers last year, while Gennett hit .324 in 2013 in his first big league action. Turning a pair of mid-round selections into two lineup fixtures would be a solid return for Milwaukee. 

    Draft Grade: B

Kansas City Royals

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    Jesse Johnson-USA TODAY Sports

    Notable Selections: RHP Aaron Crow (First), OF Wil Myers (Third), LHP Chris Dwyer (Fourth), RHP Louis Coleman (Fifth)


    Draft Review

    Each of the Kansas City Royals' top four selections from the 2009 draft have made their MLB debuts. Myers, who was the 2013 American league Rookie of the Year, is the most recognizable of the trio, but Crow and Coleman have been valuable contributors as well. 

    Last season, Coleman posted a minuscule 0.61 ERA with 32 strikeouts in 29.2 innings of work. Crow earned an All-Star nod in his rookie campaign and has pitched in at least 57 games in all three of his big league seasons.  

    Draft Grade: B

Atlanta Braves

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    Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports

    Notable Selections: LHP Mike Minor (First), RHP David Hale (Third)


    Draft Review

    The Atlanta Braves hit it big with their first overall pick in the 2009 MLB draft. The Braves tabbed Minor with the No. 7 pick, and the left-hander made his big league debut in 2010. 

    Last year, Minor enjoyed a monster campaign as he went 13-9 with a 3.21 ERA while surpassing the 200-innings plateau for the first time in his career. 

    Hale is the other standout from the class of 2009. The right-hander might not earn a spot in the team's crowded rotation, but at worst he'll be a valuable bullpen contributor in the upcoming campaign. 

    However, the fact that Minor and Hale are the only two players who reached the big leagues keeps the Braves' grade from rising any higher. 

    Draft Grade: B+

San Francisco Giants

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    Ross D. Franklin/Associated Press

    Notable Selections: RHP Zack Wheeler (First), 1B Brandon Belt (Fourth), RHP Jake Dunning (33rd)


    Draft Review

    The San Francisco Giants' 2009 draft class was short on quantity but not on quality. Wheeler is, of course, no longer with the team after the Giants traded him to the New York Mets for Carlos Beltran during the summer of 2011. 

    That swap didn't exactly work out for San Francisco. However, the fact that the Giants were able to trade Wheeler for Beltran straight up underscores just how shrewd of a selection Wheeler was as the No.6 overall pick. 

    Belt, meanwhile, looks to be a force in the Giants lineup for years to come. During the second half of the 2013 season, the first baseman hit .326/.390/.525. 

    Draft Grade: B+

Washington Nationals

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    Notable Selections: RHP Stephen Strasburg (First), RHP Drew Storen (First), 2B Jeff Kobernus (Second), RHP Taylor Jordan (Ninth), RHP Nate Karns (12th)


    Draft Review

    Strasburg has lived up to all the hype that surrounded him heading into the 2009 MLB draft. 

    In four seasons, the right-hander has posted a 2.96 ERA and a 10.4 K/9 ratio across 75 starts. However, outside of Strasburg the only noteworthy player from the 2009 class has been Storen.

    That consideration, coupled with the fact that it hardly took a scouting genius to recognize that Strasburg was the top player on the 2009 draft board, keeps the Nationals from grading out any higher. 

    Draft Grade: B+


    Note: Video courtesy of MLB Advanced Media. 

Arizona Diamondbacks

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    Notable Selections: OF A.J. Pollock (First), 3B Matt Davidson (First), INF Chris Owings (First), LHP Mike Belfiore (First), OF Marc Krauss (Second), 1B Ryan Wheeler (Fifth), 1B Paul Goldschmidt (Eighth), RHP Charles Brewer


    Draft Review

    With seven picks in the first two rounds of the 2009 MLB draft, the Arizona Diamondbacks were perfectly positioned to land an impressive collection of talent. In total, eight of the players the Diamondbacks selected in that draft have made their MLB debuts. 

    And while the club made solid use of its early-round selections, it was the decision to draft Goldschmidt in the eighth round that has proven to be the most productive pick of all. Last year, Goldschmidt clubbed 36 home runs while hitting .302/.401/.551 on his way to finishing as the runner-up for the National League MVP award. 

    Draft Grade: A-


    Note: Video courtesy of MLB Advanced Media. 

Los Angeles Angels

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    Norm Hall/Getty Images

    Notable Selections: OF Mike Trout (First), LHP Tyler Skaggs (First), RHP Garrett Richards (First), LHP Patrick Corbin (Second), LHP Josh Spence (Third), RHP David Carpenter (Ninth)


    Draft Review

    The 2009 MLB draft would have been a massive success for the Los Angeles Angles even if they had stopped picking after snagging Trout with the No. 25 overall selection. Of course, they didn't.

    The Angels also picked up Richards and Skaggs, who could both be a part of the team's 2014 rotation. Plus, the team drafted the 2013 All-Star Corbin, who was ultimately flipped to the Arizona Diamondbacks as part of deal for Dan Haren. 

    Draft Grade: A

St. Louis Cardinals

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    Jamie Squire/Getty Images

    Notable Selections: RHP Shelby Miller (First), RHP Joe Kelly (Third), INF Ryan Jackson (Fifth), 3B Matt Carpenter (13th), RHP Trevor Rosenthal (21st), 1B Matt Adams (23rd), RHP Keith Butler (24th)


    Draft Review

    The St. Louis Cardinals' 2009 MLB draft class is simply unbelievable. 

    In a single draft, the Cardinals managed to find five players who were key contributors to the club in 2013 and who will be equally, if not more, important in 2014.

    The best selection of all, though, has to be Rosenthal, who was the 639th overall player selected out of Cowley County Community College in Arkansas City, Kan. 

    Draft Grade: A+


    If you want to talk baseball, find me on Twitter @KarlBuscheck