The MLB Draft is this week and for the first time it will be televised which will likely replace the NFL Draft for the boringest sports program ever. At least with the NFL Draft you've seen the top players play because college football is everywhere on Saturday's in the Fall but you are rarely able to catch any college baseball on t.v. outside the College World Series plus on top of that many of the top prospects are drafted out of high school.
I just picked 1987 to do a Draftback since by now most of the players from this draft careers are either done or winding down which just makes me feel so very old. It also has two first ballot Hall of Famers in the 1st Round with the #1 pick overall being one of the most hyped prospects ever and almost immediately living up to that hype.
1. Mariners - Ken Griffey Jr., Outfielder, High School
By far the best #1 pick of the 1980's Griffey would already be a superstar by 1990 and help turn around what was the Clippers of Major League Baseball into a respectable franchise.
2. Pirates - Mark Merchant, Outfielder, High School
On the other side of the coin we get this guy. Ironically enough he ended being traded to the Mariners organization in 1989 but never made it to the Majors and did not reach Triple-A until 1993.
3. Twins - Willie Banks, Pitcher, High School
Walked 107 batters in 125 2/3 innings in low A ball in 1988. Had one solid year in the Majors in '93 (11-12, 4.04 ERA) and that was it. Pitched for seven different teams in nine years in the Majors. Per the Baseball Cube in 2005 he gave up 15 runs in two innings pitched for the independent Newark Bears.
4. Cubs - Mike Harkey, Pitcher, Cal State Fullerton
Harkey had shoulder problems almost immediately but did to put together a very good rookie year in 1990 (12-6, 3.26 ERA) finishing 5th in the N.L. ROY voting. But that was his high point as he could rarely ever stay healthy.
5. White Sox - Jack McDowell, Pitcher, Stanford
Made his MLB debut just three months after being drafted. Very good pitcher for a few years including picking up a Cy Young in 1993 but started to break down by age 30. Probably best known for flipping off the Yankee fans in 1995 after being pulled from a game in his one season in New York.
6. Braves - Derek Lilliquist, Pitcher, Georgia
To no surprise he became expendable in the Braves organization and was traded to San Diego in 1990. Had two very good years as a middle reliever with the Indians in the mid-90's but little success at any other point.
7. Orioles - Chris Myers, Pitcher, High School
I found almost nothing on this guy. As you can imagine he never pitched in the Majors.
8. Dodgers - Dan Opperman, Pitcher, High School
Another guy where it is almost like he never exsisted. He apparently blew out his arm very early into is pro career.
9. Royals - Kevin Appier, Pitcher, High School
Excellent pitcher during his early to mid-20's with the Royals and I think was bit overlooked during his peak. Pitched reguarly into his mid-30's but was not particularly effective after age 29.
10. Padres - Kevin Garner, Pitcher/Outfielder, Texas
All I found out is he became a first baseman and was traded in 1991 with Joey Cora to the White Sox. Never sniffed the Majors.
11. Athletics - Lee Tinsley, Outfielder, High School
Never played for the A's and didn't make is MLB debut until 1993 with Seattle spending the majority of his brief career as a 4th or 5th outfielder.
12. Expos - Delino DeShields, Shortstop/Second Baseman, High School
A speedy, decent hitting, but poor fielding second baseman who spent 13 seasons in the Majors. Probably best remembered though for being the guy the Dodgers traded Pedro Martinez for.
13. Brewers - Bill Spiers, Shortstop, Clemson
13 years in the Majors mainly as a utility infielder.
14. Cardinals - Cris Carpenter, Pitcher, Georgia
No this is not Chris Carpenter. This Cris Carpenter pitched eight years in Majors primarily as a reliever.
15. Orioles - Brad DuVall, Pitcher, Virginia Tech
Chose to return to school the next year but didn't help his stock as he dropped to 23rd overall to St. Louis in the '88 draft and would never reach the Majors.
16. Giants - Mike Remlinger, Pitcher, Dartmouth
Only pitched 123 2/3 innings in the Majors thru 1996 he wouldn't have any real success until age 33 as a middle reliever with the Braves and was able to hang around until last year.
17. Blue Jays - Alex Sanchez, Pitcher, UCLA
Spent 18 days in the Majors in 1989: 11 2/3 IP, 16 H, 13 ER, 14 BB, 4 SO. Ouch.
18. Reds - Jack Armstrong, Pitcher, Oklahoma
Has to be one of the most obscure pitchers ever to start an All-Star Game doing so in 1990 but he'd collapse in the second half that year, would be left out of the Reds postseason rotation and really was never good again.
19. Rangers - Brian Bohanon, Pitcher, High School
Despite 5.19 career ERA still threw over 1000 innings in the Majors which again proves if you have a son who is left handed you better make him learn how to pitch.
20. Tigers - Bill Henderson, Catcher, High School
Another almost non-exsistant player.
21. Tigers - Steve Pegues, Outfielder, High School
Well at least one of the Tigers back-to-back picks made it to the Majors but Pegues didn't do it until 1994 with the Reds and played a total of 100 games in the Majors.
22. Astros - Craig Biggio, Catcher, Seton Hall
Okay he is washed up now and is just barely hanging by a thread to get to 3000 hits but he's had a remarkable career and doesn't need to get 3000 to be a lock for the Hall of Fame.
23. Rangers - Bill Haselman, Catcher, UCLA
Career back up catcher who played 13 years in the Majors.
24. Mets - Chris Donnels, Third Baseman, Loyola Marymount
Non-descript career in the Majors, played four years in Japan from 1996-1999.
25. Angels - John Orton, Catcher, Cal Poly San Luis Obispo
Damn teams sure were in desperate need of catchers in 1987. In 448 plate apperances in the Majors he hit .200/.265/.274.
26. Red Sox - Reggie Harris, Pitcher, High School
Had a five year gap between apperances in the Majors between 1991 and 1996, only threw 121 career innings.
Other Picks of Note
2nd Round, Blue Jays - Derek Bell
2nd Round, Indians - Albert Belle
2nd Round, Mariners - Dave Burba
2nd Round, Mets - Todd Hundley
2nd Round, Yankees - Pete Schourek
3rd Round, Cardinals - Ray Lankford
3rd Round, Brewers - Jaime Navarro
5th Round, Blue Jays - Mike Timlin
6th Round, Dodgers - Darrin Fletcher
6th Round, Padres - Dave Hollins
7th Round, Twins - Mark Guthrie
7th Round, Pirates - Mickey Morandini
7th Round, Reds - Reggie Sanders
11th Round, Orioles - Mike Mussina (did not sign)
13th Round, Orioles - Steve Finley
13th Round, Braves - Mike Stanton
18th Round, Orioles - David Segui
20th Round, Athletics - Scott Brosius
24th Round, Brewers - Jeromy Burnitz (did not sign)
26th Round, Yankees - Dan Wilson (did not sign)
28th Round, Twins - Bret Boone (did not sign)
30th Round, Astros - Darryl Kile
32nd Round, Rangers - Robb Nen
34th Round, Astros - Scott Erickson (did not sign)
37th Round, Cubs - Jeff Cirillo (did not sign)
45th Round, Blue Jays - Darren Lewis (did not sign)
48th Round, Yankees - Brad Ausmus
58th Round, Royals - Jeff Conine