Thursday, June 5, 2014

A look back at the 2013 Draft on Draft Day

The Pirates 2012 season ended in disappointment. At the All-Star break they were one of baseball's best teams and it seemed certain that they would have their first winning record in nearly two decades.  Due to injuries and struggles by the pitching staff, the Pirates would end up with the 13th worse record in baseball and continue their losing streak.  That year, they also saw their first round draft selection, Mark Appel, return to Stanford as a college senior.
2013 Leaf Trinity Reese McGuire Inscriptions 10/10

Since the selection of Appel was a protected pick, that allowed the Pirates to draft 9th overall in the 2013 draft in addition to 14th overall.  Many reports linked the Pirates to high school catcher Reese McGuire prior to the draft.  When the draft day arrived and super talented five tool athlete Austin Meadows was still available 9th overall, the Pirates selected him.  When it came time to draft 14th overall, Reese McGuire was still available and the Pirates fulfilled those early discussions by selecting him.

The 2013 draft for the Pirates was a succesful draft, but much of the talk revolved around those two first rounders.  However, the draft included several other probable major leaguers.  The Pirates focused on left handed pitching and middle infielders in rounds 2-7 before stock piling right handed pitchers.  They were able to add to their farm system top 20 prospects like left handed pitchers Blake Taylor (2nd round) and Cody Dickson (4th round), shortstops like JaCoby Jones (3rd round) ,Trae Arbet (5th round), and Adam Frazier (6th round).

In a short time, the Pirates will be drafting with the 24th overall pick, something they haven't had to do in over 20 years.  It's nearly impossible to pinpoint one name they will draft, but I suspect that Neal Huntington will continue to draft the best player available even if that means drafting someone they doubt they will be able to sign that dropped due to signability issues (like Appel in 2012).  My personal preference if he's available is college first baseman Casey Gillespie.  I really like the bat he has and think that he will be a quick rise to the majors.

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