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Few Surprises So Far in MLB Draft

The Major League Baseball Draft is nothing like those of the other three major sports. When it’s time for the NBA, NFL or NHL drafts fans stay glued to their televisions. That’s after spending weeks debating who each team should take. Then there’s the MLB Draft, which isn’t a made for television theatrical. Three days after it starts it’s over and there have been 40 rounds worth of picks.

Fans don’t get excited about the MLB Draft because few, if any, of these players will have a sudden impact on their team. Most of them will never make the major leagues. Even those who do will likely spend a few years toiling away in the minors. Especially the high school players who are drafted. But it’s still an important time for big league teams. It gives them a chance to acquire cost-controlled players for a while. That’s something the smaller market teams depend on.

High school shortstop Royce Lewis was the first player taken by the Minnesota Twins. Although he’ll disappear for several years now, he’ll likely be a good player, who can hit with power and run. Another high school player was taken second in Hunter Greene. He plays shortstop but may be converted into a pitcher full time. You don’t see many high school arms who hit the upper 90s with their fastball. The Padres kept the high school run going at No. 3 with MacKenzie Gore, a left-handed pitcher.

The Rays broke the run on high school players by taking Louisville’s Brendan McKay at No. 4. Another two-way player, he will likely become a position player despite a 2.34 ERA with 140 strikeouts in 104 innings.

Oregon State’s Luke Heimlich was not taken in the first four rounds. At one time he was thought to be a first-round pick until news of his sexual offender status stemming from sexually abusing a 6 year old girls when he was 15 surfaced. A number of teams took him off their draft board.

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