Baseball executives will tell you it takes at least three years and often five to know whether a given draft class is successful or not. Any judgments we make now should be taken with a great deal of sodium chloride. Still, we can at least summarize what's happened this week, and point out particularly interesting picks in the later rounds.
Here are capsule summaries for each team. Extended analysis can be found at Minor League Ball.
Arizona Diamondbacks: Fireballing RHP Trevor Bauer (UCLA) and Archie Bradley (Oklahoma HS) at the top of the draft could both become number one starters. Kent State LHP Andrew Chafin (supplemental) and Coastal Carolina RHP Anthony Meo (2nd round) also have outstanding arms. Sleepers: OF Ben Roberts (7th round, Montana HS), LHP Adam Choplick (17th round, Texas HS).
Atlanta Braves: Polished collegians like first round LHP Sean Gilmartin (Florida State) and Connecticut SS Nick Ahmed (2nd round) will get to the majors quickly but don't project as franchise types. RHP Santa Clara product J.R. Graham (4th round) can hit 100 MPH and could close. Sleepers: SS Logan Robbins (10th round, Western Kentucky), RHP Navery Moore (14th round, Vanderbilt).
Baltimore Orioles: RHP Dylan Bundy at fourth overall was an excellent pick. Second round Vanderbilt 3B Jason Esposito has an excellent glove and a chance to be a solid hitter. RHPs Mike Wright (3rd round, East Carolina) and Kyle Simon (4th round, Arizona) throw sinkers for strikes. Sleepers: 3B-C Nick Delmonico (6th round, Tennessee HS), OF Jason Coats (12th round, TCU).
Boston Red Sox: RHP Matt Barnes (Connecticut), C Blake Swihart (New Mexico HS), LHP Henry Owens (California HS), and OF Jackie Bradley (South Carolina) are a balanced and strong group at the top. OF Williams Jerez (2nd round, Brooklyn HS) has tremendous tools, while RHP Noe Ramirez (4th round, Cal State Fullerton) throws strikes and will advance quickly. This is an excellent class. Sleepers: OF Senquez Golson (8th round, Mississippi HS), 3B Travis Shaw (9th round, Kent State) RHP Deshorn Lake (12th round, Virginia HS) among others.
Chicago Cubs: First round 3B Javier Baez (Florida HS) and second round 1B Dan Vogelbach (Florida HS) both have excellent bats. Bloodlines attract the Cubs: note 1B Trevor Gretzky (son of Wayne, 7th round), SS Dan Lockhart (son of Keith, 10th round), and OF Shawon Dunston Jr (11th round). Sleeper: RHP Dillon Maples (14th round, North Carolina HS)
Chicago White Sox: Supplemental pick Keenyn Walker (OF, Central Arizona) is blazing fast, while RHP Erik Johnson (2nd round, California) is a college arm who hits 95 MPH. RHP Jeff Soptic (3rd round, Johnson County CC) throws even harder and can hit 100. Sleepers: C Kevan Smith (7th round, Pittsburgh), RHP Ian Gardek (8th round, Angelina JC), SS David Herbek (15th round, James Madison).
Cincinnati Reds: RHP Robert Stephenson (California HS) is a terrific pick in the first round at 27th overall, while toolsy OF Gabriel Rosa (Puerto Rico HS) in the second round will need patience. 2B Ryan Wright (5th round, Louisville) has an advanced bat and can move fast. Sleepers: RHP Brooks Pinckard (10th round, Baylor), RHP Nick Fleece (13th round, Texas A&M), LHP Amir Garrett (22nd round, Nevada HS).
Cleveland Indians: If they sign both of them, grabbing SS Francisco Lindor (Florida HS) and RHP Dillon Howard (2nd round, Arkansas HS) is a huge coup. RHP Jake Sisco (3rd round, Merced JC) could also be outstanding. C Jake Lowery (4th round, James Madison) is also impressive. Sleepers: OF Bryson Miles (6th round, Stephen F. Austin State), C Eric Haase (7th round, Michigan HS), LHP Dillion Peters (20th round, Indiana HS).
Colorado Rockies: Polished LHP Tyler Anderson (Oregon) won't need long in the minors, while SS Trevor Story (Texas HS) was a great supplemental pick but will need time for his bat to catch up with the glove. OF Carl Thomore (2nd round, New Jersey HS) and C Pete O'Brien (3rd round, Bethune-Cookman) provide plenty of power. Sleepers: RHP Ross Stripling (9th round, Texas A&M), RHP Ben Hughes (10th round, St. Olaf).
Detroit Tigers: Lacking a first round choice, the Tigers focused on safe college picks, though C James McCann (2nd round, Arkansas) and 1B Aaron Westlake (3rd round, Vanderbilt) are both fine choices who can move quickly. They didn't take a high school player until the 15th round. Sleepers: OF Jason Krizan (8th round, Dallas Baptist), OF Jeff Holm (12th round, Michigan State), OF Tyler Gibson (15th round, Georgia HS.
Florida Marlins: The advanced power arm of Cuban defector RHP Jose Fernandez will need less time to develop than most high schoolers, though LHP Adam Conley (2nd round, Washington State) will likely beat him to the majors. SS Connor Barron (3rd round, Mississippi HS) was a steal in that spot, as was LHP Charlie Lowell (6th round, Wichita State). Sleepers: RHP Scott Lyman (10th round, UC Davis), OF Jhiomar Veras (15th round, Western Oklahoma State).
Houston Astros: First round pick George Springer out of Connecticut has 20/20 potential and is a strong opening bid. RHP Adrian Houser (2nd round, Oklahoma HS) and RHP Jack Armstrong (3rd round, Vanderbilt) both have live arms and plenty of athleticism but will need time. RHP Nick Tropeano (5th round, SUNY Stony Brook) generates huge strikeout numbers with a plus changeup. Sleepers: A pair of college seniors could move fast, RHP Jonas Dufek (9th round, Creighton) and LHP Kyle Hallock (10th round, Kent State).
Kansas City Royals: High school upside is the theme in Kansas City, with local superstar OF Bubba Starling and C Cam Gallagher (2nd round, Pennsylvania HS) leading the way. RHP Bryan Brickhouse (3rd round, Texas HS) and RHP Kyle Smith (4th round, Florida HS) are promising high school arms who will need refinement. Few players in this class will move quickly. Sleepers: 1B Dean Espy (15th round, UCLA), OF Terrance Gore (20th round, Gulf Coast CC).
Los Angeles Angels: A new draft strategy for the Angels, with Utah slugger C.J. Cron headlining the crop. LHP Nick Maronde (3rd round, Florida) relieved in college but might start as a pro. RHP Mike Clevinger (4th round, Seminole State) and OF Andrew Ray (5th round, Northeast Texas CC) bring some junior college talent into the system, while RHP Austin Wood (6th round, USC) has a good arm but an erratic record. Sleepers: OF Domonic Jose (15th round, Florida HS, son of Felix), RHP Brandon Efferson (37th round, Southeast Louisiana.
Los Angeles Dodgers: Financial constraints were obvious here. LHP Chris Reed out of Stanford was a slight but not terrible overdraft, but 3B Alex Santana (2nd round, Florida HS) likely went several rounds early. C Pratt Maynard (3rd round, NC State) can hit and draws walks but needs glove polish. The rest of the class was OK but not spectacular. Sleepers: C Tyler Ogle (9th round, Oklahoma), LHP Jamaal Moore (10th round, California HS), SS Justin Boudreaux (14th round, Southeastern Louisiana).
Milwaukee Brewers: The Brewers took a big step in filling out their future starting rotation with RHP Taylor Jungmann at 12th overall and LHP Jed Bradley at 15th. RHP Jorge Lopez (2nd round, Puerto Rico) is an outstanding choice, and RHP Drew Gagnon (3rd round, Long Beach State) is very polished. Sleepers: OF Malcom Dowell (9th round, Georgia HS), LHP Carlos Rodon (16th round, North Carolina HS).
Minnesota Twins: North Carolina SS Levi Michael is a solid though unspectacular pick in the first round, while prep supplemental picks Travis Harrison (3B, California HS) and Hudson Boyd (RHP, Florida HS) offer more long-term upside but also more risk. RHP Madison Boer (3rd round, Oregon), LHP Corey Williams (4th round, Vanderbilt), and RHP Matt Summers (4th round, UC Irvine) all push 93-94 MPH. Sleepers: SS Nicholas Bryant (9th round, Troy), RHP Tyler Jones (11th round, LSU).
New York Mets: OF Brandon Nimmo offers excellent upside and reasonable polish in the first round despite his Wyoming background. RHP Michael Fullmer (supplemental, Oklahoma HS) will need development time, but RHP Cory Mazzoni (2nd round, NC State) and RHP Logan Verrett (3rd round, Baylor) could arrive quickly. Sleepers: SS Danny Muno (8th round, Fresno State), SS Phil Evans (15th round, California HS).
New York Yankees: Lacking a first round pick, the Yankees went the bloodline rote with power-hitting Florida high school OF Dante Bichette, Jr. LHP Sam Stafford (2nd round, University of Texas) and RHP Jordan Cote (3rd round, New Hampshire HS) provide live, if inconsistent, arms that can be molded. OF-P Jake Cave (6th round, Virginia HS) offers upside but will want $$ to skip LSU. Sleepers: OF Justin James (13th round, Sacramento CC, son of Dion), RHP Rookie Davis (14th round, North Carolina HS).
Oakland Athletics: RHP Sonny Gray (Vanderbilt) is a great value pick at 18th overall. 3B B.A. Vollmuth (3rd round, Southern Miss) has huge power in his bat, while OF Bobby Crocker (4th round, Cal Poly) has a power/speed combo. Sleepers: Two small college guys stand out, RHP Blake Treinen (7th round, South Dakota State), who hits 95-97, and OF Xavier Macklin (12th round, North Carolina A&T), who has power and arm strength.
Philadelphia Phillies: OF Larry Greene (supplemental, Georgia HS) is quite raw but has huge power, with high bust/high reward potential. OF Roman Quinn (2nd round, Florida HS) is a raw speed demon. 3B Harold Martinez (2nd round, Miami) tempts scouts with tools but never lived up to expectations in college. 3B-1B Cody Asche (4th round, Nebraska) has more hitting polish. Sleepers: Two lives arms to watch: RHP Kenny Giles (7th round, Yavapai JC) and LHP Austin Wright (8th round, Ole Miss) could surprise.
Pittsburgh Pirates: RHP Gerrit Cole from UCLA is a future number one starter, while OF Josh Bell (2nd round, Texas HS) has enormous power, IF they can sign him away from college with the Texas Longhorns. 1B Alex Dickerson (3rd round, Indiana) has an advanced bat. Five of the next six picks were projectable high school pitchers. Sleepers: RHP Kody Watts (15th round, Washington HS) and OF Aaron Brown (17th round, California HS) have big upside if they don't go to college.
St. Louis Cardinals: 2B Kolten Wong (Hawaii) won't need long in the minors, but OF Charlie Tilson (2nd round, Illinois HS) definitely will. OF C.J McElroy (3rd round, Texas HS) is blazing fast and is the son of former pitcher Chuck. RHP Sam Gaviglio (5th round, Oregon State) is a good value. Sleepers: OBP-machine OF Nick Martini (7th round, Kansas State), OF Lance Jeffries (10th round, Missouri HS). Jeffries is a home-town kid from St. Louis.
San Diego Padres: 2B Cory Spangenberg (Indian River JC), RHP Joe Ross (California HS), RHP Michael Kelly (Florida HS), C Brett Austin (North Carolina HS), and SS Jace Peterson (McNeese State) is a great haul at the top of the draft. If they can sign UCLA-bound glove specialist C Austin Hedges (2nd round) and Ohio-State bound RHP Matt Wisler (7th round), so much the better. Sleepers: OF Kyle Gaedele (6th round, Valparaiso), RHP Colin Rea (12th round, Indiana State), RHP Burch Smith (14th round, Oklahoma).
San Francisco Giants: First-day picks SS Joe Panik (St. John's), and RHP Kyle Crick (Texas HS) offer variety, a polished good-hitting infielder and a raw prep fireballer. C Andrew Susac (2nd round, Oregon State) and 1B Ricky Oropesa (USC) are advanced college players with strong bats. LHP Bryce Bandilla (4th round, Arizona), RHP Chris Marlowe (5th round, Oklahoma State), LHP Josh Osich (6th round, Oregon State), and RHP Raymond Black (7th round, Pittsburgh) all hit 95 MPH. Sleeper: OF Kentrell Hill (10th round, Arkansas Baptist), SS Kelby Tomlinson (12th round, Texas Tech).
Seattle Mariners: LHP Danny Hultzen was a surprise pick at 2nd overall, but the Virginia lefty is worthy of the pick. SS Brad Miller (2nd round, Clemson) is an on-base machine and has a chance to stick at shortstop, while 1B Kevin Cron (3rd round, Arizona HS) has enormous power. C Tyler Marlette (5th round, Florida HS) is a bit raw but quite promising on both sides of the ball. Sleepers: RHP Carson Smith (8th round, Texas State), 2B Dillon Hazlett (20th round, Emporia State), RHP David Colvin (27th round, Pomona Pitzer).
Tampa Bay Rays: The Rays had to make good picks without going bankrupt, and I think they found a good balance. RHP Taylor Guerrieri (South Carolina HS), OF Mikie Mathook (LSU star is a huge bargain at 31st overall), SS Jake Hager (Nevada HS), SS Brandon Martin (California HS), 3B Tyler Goeddel (California HS), RHP Jeff Ames (Lower Columbia JC), LHP Blake Snell (Washington HS), OF Kes Carter (Western Kentucky), LHP Grayson Garvin (Vanderbilt), and OF James Harris (California HS) is a giant batch of talent that mixes upside, tools, and polish in about equal amounts. OF Granden Goetzman (2nd round, Florida HS) is another excellent prospect, and there are others down the line. Stay tuned at Minor League Ball for a full breakdown of this class. Sleeper: C Matt Rice (9th round, Western Kentucky).
Texas Rangers: The Rangers have a fetish for small athletic lefties who hit 90, and Georgia prep Kevin Matthews satisfies them. OF Zach Cone (supplemental, Georgia) has terrific tools but a spotty track record. LHP Will Lamb (2nd round, Clemson) was a two-way guy in college but will use his strong arm on the mound now. OF Derek Fisher (6th round, Pennsylvania HS) has first-round tools but will be expensive to buy away from Virginia. Sleepers: OF Rashard Harlin (9th round, California HS), OF Trever Adams (16th round, Creighton).
Toronto Blue Jays: Another team with multiple early picks, with a strong focus on upside. RHP Tyler Beede (Massachusetts HS), OF Jacob Anderson (California HS), RHP Joe Musgrove (California HS), OF Dwight Smith Jr. (Georgia HS), RHP Kevin Comer (New Jersey HS), and especially LHP Daniel Norris (Tennessee HS) all have signability issues to a greater or lesser extent. If they somehow manage to sign everyone, this is an amazing draft. RHP John Stilson (3rd round, Texas A&M) could be a bargain if his shoulder is OK, and RHP Thomas Robson (4th round, British Columbia HS) is a Canadian talent to watch closely. Sleepers: 2B Christian Lopes (7th round, California HS), LHP Andrew Suarez (9th round, Florida HS). There are several other highly projectable high schoolers picked in later rounds to give other signing options should the early picks prove recalcitrant.
Washington Nationals: 3B Anthony Rendon was the best college bat available this year even with his shoulder problems, while RHP Alex Meyer offers excellent upside. Subsequent picks were solid too, including OF Brian Goodwin (supplemental, Miami-Dade CC), LHP Kylin Turnbull (4th round, Santa Barbara CC), and 3B Matt Skole (5th round, Georgia Tech). LHP Matt Purke (3rd round, TCU) has big bonus demands and questionable health, but is undeniably talented. Later choices were conservative, but there are some sleepers including RHP Brian Dupra (7th round, Notre Dame) and RHP Manny Rodriguez (10th round, Barry University) who both hit 95 MPH.