clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

MLB Draft: A look back at the 2014 MLB Draft

New, 5 comments

Three years later, how is the 2014 MLB Draft class looking?

MLB: San Francisco Giants at Chicago Cubs Dennis Wierzbicki-USA TODAY Sports

The 2017 MLB Draft begins on June 12, and teams are hoping to come away with future franchise players and avoid any disappointments that can set back their organizations. Before this year’s draft takes place, let’s revisit the 2014 MLB Draft’s 10 biggest successes and its 10 biggest disappointments and how they have impacted the league:

Successes:

1. Kyle Schwarber, Chicago Cubs — The 24-year-old left fielder is in his third season, first year as a starter, in the majors and is a hero in Cubs history. The fourth overall pick helped them win their first World Series in 108 years by batting .412 (7-for-17) with two RBI in the Fall Classic, six months after tearing his ACL and LCL in his left knee.

2. Michael Conforto, New York Mets — Since being chosen 10th overall, the left fielder has had one good full season, one bad campaign and now two great months this season with the Mets. He bursted onto the scene in 2015 while helping them reach the World Series, then had an awful 2016 campaign in which he was demoted to Triple-A multiple times, and is currently the Mets’ best hitter this year after hitting 13 homers with 31 RBI while slashing .333/.425/.713 in 40 games.

3. Carlos Rodon, Chicago White Sox — The third pick in this draft is on his way to being the White Sox’s ace of the future. Though he is injured this season, the 24-year-old lefty has gone 18-16 with a 3.90 ERA since being called up in 2015, including a 13-7 mark in second-half games.

4. Brandon Finnegan, Kansas City Royals — Out of all the players drafted, the lefty from Texas Christian University was the first one called up to the majors, as he got there in September of the 2014 campaign as a reliever. The 17th pick overall eventually played in the World Series that year before being traded to the Reds, who he is pitching for as a starter.

5. Trea Turner, San Diego Padres — After being a part of the Padres organization for a season, the 23-year-old was acquired by the Nationals in a three-team trade and has been a big piece for them ever since. The 13th pick finished second last year in the Rookie of the Year voting and has slashed .303/..335/.502 in 134 games across three seasons.

6. Aaron Nola, Philadelphia Phillies — The Phillies needed a pitcher who could be in their rotation for years to come and they got one in Nola with the seventh pick. He is in his third season as a starter and has gone 14-12 with a 4.21 ERA and a 1.28 WHIP in 37 starts.

7. Kyle Freeland, Colorado Rockies — The Rockies haven’t had an impact starter in a long time and now they have one in Freeland. The eighth pick is 5-2 with a 3.31 ERA and 32 strikeouts in 51 23 innings pitched this season.

8. Bradley Zimmer, Cleveland Indians — Thanks to a couple of injuries to the Tribe’s outfield this year, Zimmer is now playing in the big leagues. Zimmer, who was called up on May 16 after he moved quickly through the minors, has played in eight games and slashed .286/.400/.476 as their starting center fielder.

9. Jeff Hoffman, Toronto Blue Jays — Despite announcing that he needed Tommy John surgery, Hoffman still went ninth overall in the draft because he had the tools to be considered a front-line starter in the league. Then after being traded to the Rockies in 2015 for Troy Tulowitzki, Hoffman has been able to show his worth this season, going 2-0 with a 3.29 ERA, a 0.88 WHIP and 17 strikeouts in three games, including two spot starts in which he had racked up 15 strikeouts.

10. Jordan Montgomery, New York Yankees — Despite being a fourth-round selection (122nd pick overall), Montgomery has moved all the way up and into the Yankees’ rotation this season. The 24-year-old southpaw is 2-3 with a 4.30 ERA, a 1.24 WHIP and 43 strikeouts in eight starts across 46 innings.

Disappointments:

1. Brady Aiken, Houston Astros — There are not too many times that a No. 1 pick doesn’t sign with a team, but the 18-year-old Aiken did not ink his deal with the Astros after had concerns with his health (elbow inflammation in his throwing arm) and the two sides disputed over an adjusted signing bonus ($6.5 million to $5 million). After being the first No. 1 pick to not sign since Tim Belcher in 1983, Aiken went to IMG Academy in Florida, had Tommy John Surgery and was drafted 17th overall by the Indians. He is currently playing in Single-A Lake County.

2. Tyler Kolek, Miami Marlins — Kolek did sign with the Marlins, but things have not panned out for the second overall pick. He struggled at both Rookie and Single-A levels in his first two seasons, going a combined 4-13 in 33 starts, then had Tommy John Surgery in 2016. He is still at Single-A Greensboro trying to work his way back to pitching.

3. Alex Jackson, Seattle Mariners — Like Aiken and Kolek, Jackson was a top prospect coming out of high school and one teams really raved about his offensive talents. Unfortunately, the 21-year-old has not lived up to being the sixth pick, as he has hit only .245 in four seasons in the minors, three of which were in the Mariners’ system before being traded to Atlanta for this season. He is currently playing for Single-A Advanced Florida.

4. Max Pentecost, Toronto Blue Jays — Out of the 19 four-year college players selected in the first round, Pentecost is the highest drafted player hat has yet to play in the majors. After getting drafted, the catcher played well in rookie ball, but injured his shoulder and needed two surgeries on it in 2015. However, the 24-year-old is now in Single-A Advanced Dunedin, where he has an .866 OPS and 35 RBI in 34 games and is the 12th-ranked prospect in the Blue Jays organization.

5. Kodi Medeiros, Milwaukee Brewers — Since being the first Hawaiian to be picked in the first two rounds of the draft for the first time since 2001, Medeiros has struggled as a pitcher in the minors. The 12th pick overall and lefty has a career 10-22 record with a 5.35 ERA and has only reached as high as Single-A Advanced for Milwaukee.

6. Sean Newcomb, Los Angeles Angels — The Angels thought they had a future lefty in their rotation after drafting Newcomb with the 15th pick. However, they wound up using him to trade for Braves’ All-Star shortstop Andrelton Simmons in the winter of 2015. Newcomb is still a top prospect, but he is behind Kolby Allard and Mike Soroka as far as who is the next in line to play for the Braves.

7. Touki Toussaint, Arizona Diamondbacks — After being picked 16th overall, Toussaint decided to not attend Vanderbilt and play for the Diamondbacks. Unfortunately, he had a roller-coaster first year in which he was traded on his 19th birthday to the Braves. Toussaint is only 21 now, but he is struggling at Single-A Advanced Florida, where he has a 1-5 record with a 6.92 ERA in eight starts.

8. Nick Howard, Cincinnati Reds — A two-way player out of the University of Virginia, Howard was picked 19th for his pitching ability and to possibly become a future closer for the Reds. However, he has not come close to being a lockdown reliever, as he has a career 5.60 ERA and a 1.90 WHIP in 91 23 innings in the minors, where he has only reached Single-A Advanced Daytona.

9. Grant Holmes, Los Angeles Dodgers — After being selected 22nd overall, Holmes was traded to the Athletics two years later. Though the right-hander is listed as the A’s third-best prospect, he is having a hard time in Double-A Midland, as he is 2-4 with a 5.89 ERA in 10 appearances (six starts).

10. Derek Hill, Detroit Tigers — The Tigers have been waiting to see what Hill can do since they drafted the outfielder with the 23rd pick. However, he has not beem able to stay healthy for a long period of time, as he had a quad injury in 2015 and needed Tommy John Durger last year. Hill is currently in Single-A West Michigan.