2023 Amateur Draft

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The 2023 First Year Player Draft was the fifty-ninth Major League Baseball Amateur Draft. It was held on July 9, 2023, at Lumen Field in Seattle, WA as part of the 2023 All-Star Game festivities. The venue normally serves as the home field of the NFL's Seattle Seahawks and Major League Soccer's Seattle Sounders.

For the first time, the first overall pick did not go automatically to the team with the worst overall record the previous season, but was awarded in a lottery held at the winter meetings on December 6, 2022; all teams that missed the 2022 Postseason were eligible for the lottery, with the odds being proportional to each team's lack of on-field success (i.e. the Washington Nationals, Oakland Athletics and Pittsburgh Pirates, who all lost 100 or more games in 2022, had identical 16.5% odds of winning the top pick, all the way down to the Milwaukee Brewers, who missed the postseason by one game, at 0.2%). Only the top six picks were subject to the lottery, with the non-winning teams then falling in the order of their finish in 2022 to claim picks 7 to 18. This lottery was created as part of the Collective Bargaining Agreement arrived at following the 2021-2022 lockout.

The Pirates were the winners of that inaugural lottery, giving them the top pick for the second time in three drafts, having also done so in the 2021 Amateur Draft; the Nationals were awarded the second pick, and the Detroit Tigers improved from sixth to third thanks to the lottery, while the Athletics fell to sixth. Both the New York Mets and Los Angeles Dodgers exceeded the initial competitive-balance tax threshold of $230 million by more than $40 million, so their first selections dropped by 10 spots to fall outside the first round proper.

Initial evaluations of the players available for this draft noted that there was a stronger than usual college class, and that it was a direct result of the COVID-19 pandemic, that had reduced the 2020 Amateur Draft to just five rounds and significantly capped bonuses available to other players. Therefore, many high school players who would have turned pro in a normal year decided to go on to college, and were now eligible to be drafted. Thus the two top-rated prospects that spring were college players, both from Louisiana State University, OF Dylan Crews and RhP Paul Skenes, raising the possibility that the top two picks could come from the same school - something unprecedented. The main obstacle to that happening was there were three other players who would be considered top overall pick material most years competing with them for those two slots: college OF Wyatt Langford and high schoolers Walker Jenkins and Max Clark, both also OFs. Skenes and Crews did in fact become the first teammates to be selected with the top two picks, going to Pittsburgh and Washington, respectively.

Draft Order[edit]

First Round[edit]

Pick Team Player Position School (Type) Hometown Notes
1 Pittsburgh Pirates Paul Skenes P Louisiana State University (Col.) Lake Forest, CA
2 Washington Nationals Dylan Crews OF Louisiana State University (Col.) Longwood, FL
3 Detroit Tigers Max Clark OF Franklin Community High School (H.S.) Franklin, IN
4 Texas Rangers Wyatt Langford OF University of Florida (Col.) Trenton, FL
5 Minnesota Twins Walker Jenkins OF South Brunswick High School (H.S.) Oak Island, NC
6 Oakland Athletics Jacob Wilson SS Grand Canyon University (Col.) Thousand Oaks, CA
7 Cincinnati Reds Rhett Lowder P Wake Forest University (Col.) Albemarle, NC
8 Kansas City Royals Blake Mitchell C Sinton High School (H.S.) Sinton, TX
9 Colorado Rockies Chase Dollander P University of Tennessee (Col.) Evans, GA
10 Miami Marlins Noble Meyer P Jesuit High School (H.S.) West Linn, OR
11 Los Angeles Angels Nolan Schanuel 1B Florida Atlantic University (Col.) Boynton Beach, FL
12 Arizona Diamondbacks Tommy Troy IF Stanford University (Col.) Los Gatos, CA
13 Chicago Cubs Matt Shaw SS University of Maryland (Col.) Brimfield, MA
14 Boston Red Sox Kyle Teel C University of Virginia (Col.) Mahwah, NJ
15 Chicago White Sox Jacob Gonzalez SS University of Mississippi (Col.) Glendora, CA
16 San Francisco Giants Bryce Eldridge 1B/OF/P James Madison High School (H.S.) Vienna, VA
17 Baltimore Orioles Enrique Bradfield Jr. OF Vanderbilt University (Col.) Hialeah, FL
18 Milwaukee Brewers Brock Wilken 3B Wake Forest University (Col.) Valrico, FL
19 Tampa Bay Rays Brayden Taylor 3B Texas Christian University (Col.) West Jordan, UT
20 Toronto Blue Jays Arjun Nimmala SS Strawberry Crest High School (H.S.) Valrico, FL
21 St. Louis Cardinals Chase Davis OF University of Arizona (Col.) Elk Grove, CA
22 Seattle Mariners Colt Emerson SS John Glenn High School (H.S.) Cambridge, OH
23 Cleveland Guardians Raffaele Velazquez C Huntington Beach High School (H.S.) Garden Grove, CA
24 Atlanta Braves Hurston Waldrep P University of Florida (Col.) Thomasville, GA
25 San Diego Padres Dillon Head OF Homewood-Flossmoor High School (H.S.) Glenwood, IL
26 New York Yankees George Lombard Jr. SS Gulliver Preparatory School (H.S.) Pinecrest, FL
27 Philadelphia Phillies Aidan Miller 3B J. W. Mitchell High School (H.S.) Trinity, FL
28 Houston Astros Brice Matthews SS University of Nebraska (Col.) Humble, TX

Prospect Promotion Incentive Picks[edit]

Pick Team Player Position School (Type) Hometown Notes
29 Seattle Mariners Jonny Farmelo OF Westfield High School (H.S.) Centreville, VA Received for Julio Rodríguez winning Rookie of the Year.

If a player who was rated as a preseason Top 100 prospect by MLB Pipeline, Baseball America, and/or ESPN (at least two of the three) and was on his team's Opening Day roster goes on to win the Rookie of the Year Award, the club is awarded a Prospect Promotion Incentive pick after the first round.

Competitive Balance Round A[edit]

Pick Team Player Position School (Type) Hometown Notes
30 Seattle Mariners Tai Peete SS Trinity Christian School (H.S.) Tyrone, GA
31 Tampa Bay Rays Adrian Santana SS Doral Academy Preparatory School (H.S.) Miami, FL
32* New York Mets Colin Houck SS Parkview High School (H.S.) Lilburn, GA
33 Milwaukee Brewers Josh Knoth P Patchogue-Medford High School (H.S.) Medford, NY
34 Minnesota Twins Charlee Soto P Reborn Christian Academy (H.S.) Kissimmee, FL
35 Miami Marlins Thomas White P Phillips Academy (H.S.) Rowley, MA
36* Los Angeles Dodgers Kendall George OF Atascocita High School (H.S.) Humble, TX
37 Detroit Tigers Kevin McGonigle SS Monsignor Bonner High School (H.S.) Aldan, PA
38 Cincinnati Reds Ty Floyd P Louisiana State University (Col.) Rockmart, GA
39 Oakland Athletics Myles Naylor 3B St. Joan of Arc Catholic Secondary School (H.S.) Mississauga, ON

* The Mets’ and Dodgers' first picks dropped 10 spots because they exceeded the competitive balance tax threshold by more than $40 million.

Other Sports Selections[edit]

Notes[edit]

As noted above, the top two picks, Paul Skenes and Dylan Crews, both came out of Louisiana State University - something that was completely unprecedented.

No. 28 pick Brice Matthews and no. 36 pick Kendall George both went to Atascocita High School, although Matthews was drafted out of college.

All first-round picks came to an agreement on a contract with the team that selected them by the July 25 deadline. In fact, only one player taken in the top ten rounds failed to sign - #305 pick Caden Kendle, taken by the St. Louis Cardinals in the 10th round!

The first player from the draft to make it to the majors was #11 pick Nolan Schanuel, on August 18, 2023, barely a month after being drafted by the Los Angeles Angels. The Angels had been very aggressive in getting their draft picks to the Show in recent years, as earlier that season they had promoted the first player to reach the majors from the 2022 Amateur Draft in Zach Neto, as well as the next two such players, and a year before had promoted the first alumnus from the 2021 Amateur Draft to the majors in Chase Silseth.

Further Reading[edit]

  • Jim Callis: "Here's a first look at 2023's top Draft prospects", mlb.com, December 13, 2022. [1]
  • Jim Callis: "Mock draft: Predicting all 30 teams’ first pick", mlb.com, June 1, 2023. [2]
  • Jim Callis and Jonathan Mayo: "Here's how Draft experts think the first 10 picks should go", mlb.com, April 25, 2023. [3]
  • Sam Dykstra, Jim Callis and Jonathan Mayo: "Our favorite Draft picks -- one for each team", mlb.com, July 13, 2023. [4]
  • Jonathan Mayo: "Draft lottery to air on Network Dec. 6. Here's each team's odds", mlb.com, November 7, 2022. [5]
  • Jonathan Mayo: "3 teams move into top 5 in inaugural Draft Lottery", mlb.com, December 6, 2022. [6]
  • Jonathan Mayo: "Skenes, Crews become first teammates to go 1-2", mlb.com, July 9, 2023. [7]
  • Jonathan Mayo: "Draft Day 1: Pick-by-pick rundown, analysis", mlb.com, July 10, 2023. [8]

Related Sites[edit]