The No. 1 overall pick in the Major League Baseball First Year Player Selection Draft was a high school player, but he wasn't a player from the United States.
Carlos Correa of the Puerto Rico Baseball Academy was a bit of a surprise as the No. 1 overall pick in the draft, going to the Houston Astros. Correa had not been targeted by any of the multitude of mock drafts as the No. 1 overall pick. That honor was set aside for Stanford's Mark Appel or Appling County (Baxley, Ga.)
outfielder Byron Buxton
The rest of the draft saw 32 high school players from the United States selected among the Top 60 picks chosen on Monday's portion of the draft. That's the exact same number as last year's draft, however 12 went in the first round last year compared to 16 this year.
Buxton was the first high school player from the United States chosen,
going to the Minnesota Twins with the No. 2 overall pick
. He was one of six high school outfielders chosen in the first round, the most of any position among high school players selected. Albert Almora
of Mater Academy Charter (Hialeah Gardens, Fla.)
was the next high school player chosen at No. 6 by the Chicago Cubs, while Max Fried
of Harvard-Westlake (North Hollywood, Calif.)
followed at No. 7 to the Padres.MaxPreps MLB Draft Day Central
Among the surprises in the first round was Archbishop McCarthy (Fort Lauderdale, Fla.)
pitcher Nick Travieso
, who went to the Cincinnati Reds with the No. 14 overall pick. Travieso went ahead of Harvard-Westlake (North Hollywood, Calif.)
star Lucas Giolito
, chosen No. 16 overall by the Washington Nationals. Giolito had been the No. 1 ranked prospect in the country prior to suffering an injury in March.
Another surprise was the fall of Jesuit (Tampa, Fla.)
pitcher Lance McCullers
to the No. 41 spot. The Astros, who were expected to take Appel with the No. 1 overall pick, got a player in McCullers who at one time was projected as the draft's top overall player. Speculation by the analysts on MLB.com was that McCullers was expected to be a signability issue as he has a scholarship to Florida.
Other surprises from the compensatory round were Collin Wiles
of Blue Valley West (Stilwell, Kan.)
, Paul Blackburn
of Heritage (Brentwood, Calif.)
, Steve Bean
of Rockwall (Texas)
and Mitch Gueller
of W.F. West (Chehalis, Wash.)
Wiles helped lead his team to the Kansas 6A state championship game and was the Gatorade State Player of the Year. Blackburn, a 6-foot-2 righthander, went 10-3 with a 0.93 ERA at Heritage this year. Bean was not among the Top 10 overall catching prospects on many pre-draft scouting reports, but he was the fifth overall catcher selected, the third high schooler. Gueller, meanwhile, led his team to a state championship in Washington and was a rapid riser among right-handed pitchers.
Two high schools had two players chosen in the first 60 picks. Harvard-Westlake had two of the top 16 players with Fried going to the Padres at No. 6 and Giolito going at No. 16.Olympia (Orlando, Fla.)
, meanwhile, had Jesse Winker
go to the Reds at No. 49 and Walker Weickel
go to the Padres at No. 55.
The Padres made a great haul of high school pitchers on the first day. Besides getting Fried and Weickel, San Diego also got Zach Eflin
, a fast-rising righthander who has improved his speed this spring. He was chosen with the 33rd overall pick.
The Oakland A's also made an impression on the first day. Normally a team that drafts college players, the A's took three straight high school infielders. Oakland nabbed Addison Russell
of Pace (Fla.)
, a shortstop, with the No. 11 overall pick. The A's then chose third baseman Daniel Robertson
of Upland (Calif.)
with the No. 34 pick. Matt Olson
of Parkview (Lilburn, Ga.)
, a first baseman, came with pick No. 47.
Florida led all states with nine high school players chosen. California was next with five while Texas and Georgia each had three.
Even with 32 high school players chosen, there are plenty top-ranked players still available. They include:
No. 7 (MaxPreps Rankings) Trey Williams
, Valencia (Calif.)
No. 15 Rio Ruiz
, Bishop Amat (La Puente, Calif.)
(injured this year)
No. 16 Hunter Virant
, Camarillo (Calif.)
No. 17 Nick Williams
, Ball (Galveston, Texas)
No. 18 C.j. Hinojosa
, Klein Collins (Spring, Texas)
(injured this year)
No. 19 Duane Underwood
, Pope (Marietta, Ga.)
No. 20 Mitchell Traver
, Houston Christian
No. 22 Carson Kelly
, Westview (Portland, Ore.)