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June 17, 2014

The 2012 Redraft

Whom Would We Pick Now?

by Baseball Prospectus


It's been just over two years since the 2012 draft, and we've gotten a good look at how that crop of highly touted amateurs has has performed in the pros. To see how much perceptions of those players have changed, we decided to do the draft over again (just as we did with the 2013 draft last week), assigning 30 picks to BP authors and re-drafting from scratch, selecting only from the pool of players who were picked last year. Here's how the first-round re-draft shook out.

1:1 Houston Astros
Actual Selection: Carlos Correa, SS
Re-Draft Selection: Mike Zunino, C, Mariners (2012 no. 3 pick)
Draft Position Change: +2
Explanation: He's not only made the big leagues, but he's the Mariners’ no. 1 catcher. We've discovered that Zunino has special framing and blocking abilities, so he's already an impact player. If his on-base skills develop, he could be one of the hidden elite players in baseball, like Jonathan Lucroy or Brian McCann. —Harry Pavlidis

1:2 Minnesota Twins
Actual Selection: Byron Buxton, CF
Re-Draft Selection: Byron Buxton, CF, Twins (2012 no. 2 pick)
Draft Position Change: 0
Explanation: Trouble with a wrist injury may have dampened some of the enthusiasm surrounding Buxton this season, but he’s still the premier talent from the 2012 draft. He has impact tools across the board and has a chance to be the best player in the game at his peak. —Mark Anderson

1:3 Seattle Mariners
Actual Selection: Mike Zunino, C
Re-Draft Selection: Carlos Correa, SS, Houston Astros (2012 no. 1 pick)
Draft Position Change: -2
Explanation: Correa is a face-of-the-franchise shortstop and a steal at this spot. With a body to dream on, Correa projects to stay at SS for the long term, playing at least average defense and showing off a near-elite arm while hitting for both plus power and average. That’s why he was taken no. 1 overall in 2012, and that’s why he has such a strong case for the current no. 1 overall prospect ranking. —CJ Wittmann

1:4 Baltimore Orioles
Actual Selection: Kevin Gausman, SP
Re-Draft Selection: Kevin Gausman, SP, Baltimore Orioles (2012 no. 4 pick)
Draft Position Change: 0
Explanation: Gausman retains his draft day potential as a future front-end arm with two plus-plus offerings in his fastball and changeup. Having already logged a couple of impressive starts with the big club this summer, he comes with a high floor and quick return on investment. —Nick Faleris

1:5 Kansas City Royals
Actual Selection: Kyle Zimmer, SP
Re-Draft Selection: Michael Wacha, SP, St. Louis Cardinals (2012 no. 19 pick)
Draft Position Change: +14
Explanation: Wacha was advanced coming out of college, but the opinions on his curveball were lukewarm. The progress the righty made with the pitch in a relatively short amount of time speaks to the makeup, and to his willingness to focus on what he needs to do to be successful over the long run. He's not only an arm that tracked quickly to The Show while improving in the process, but made an immediate impact on his club and should continue to do so over the long haul. —Chris Mellen

1:6 Chicago Cubs
Actual Selection: Albert Almora, OF
Re-Draft Selection: Addison Russell, SS, Oakland Athletics (2012 no. 11 pick)
Draft Position Change: +5
Explanation: While he lost a couple valuable months of Double-A development time this spring because of a torn hamstring, the time off did nothing to diminish Russell’s standing as one of the elite prospects in the game. There are still some rough edges to his swing and lingering whispers that range limitations at short may eventually push him to third, but the developmental progress has been impressive thus far. This is a first-division left-side prospect on a relatively fast track, and it speaks to the talent ahead of him that this kind of package was still on the board at no. 6 in this redraft. —Wilson Karaman

1:7 San Diego Padres
Actual Selection: Max Fried, SP
Re-Draft Selection: Lucas Giolito, SP, Washington Nationals (2012 no. 16 pick)
Draft Position Change: +9
Explanation: Lucas Giolito was a relatively easy selection in this spot, as he possesses the highest upside of any arm in baseball. While it’s not a certainty by any means that he’ll reach his Cooperstown ceiling, the payoff can still be immense, and Giolito has all of the tools to be a top-of-the-rotation workhorse, including a fastball in the mid to upper 90s, a picturesque pitcher's build, and a devastating curveball. To be sure, there are still some mechanical hurdles that Giolito needs to overcome, including a long arm swing, but the risk/reward is large enough to warrant a selection at no. 7. —Jordan Gorosh

1:8 Pittsburgh Pirates
Actual Selection: Mark Appel, SP (did not sign)
Re-Draft Selection: Andrew Heaney, SP, Miami Marlins (2012 no. 9 pick)
Draft Position Change: +1
Explanation: There are a lot of really talented players left, and I nearly balked at taking a pitcher. But Heaney dominated Triple-A and made it to the majors just two years after being drafted, and he looks the part of a no. 3 starter with no. 2 upside during his peak years. His combination of upside, left-handedness, and probability can't be beaten here. —Ben Carsley

1:9 Miami Marlins
Actual Selection: Andrew Heaney, SP
Re-Draft Selection: Joey Gallo, 3B, Texas Rangers (2012 no. 39 pick)
Draft Position Change: +30
Explanation: No one has questioned Gallo's power; it was the approach that inspired concerns. Gallo has answered those questions this season and then some, and my Marlins team now has two potential 80 power guys in the middle of my lineup (along with Giancarlo Stanton)—one from each side of the plate. —Jeff Moore

1:10 Colorado Rockies
Actual Selection: David Dahl, OF
Re-Draft Selection: Corey Seager, SS, Los Angeles Dodgers (2012 no. 18 pick)
Draft Position Change: +8
Explanation: What if I told you there was a left-handed-hitting, 6'4ʺ shortstop prospect with plus power, a plus arm, an above-average (or better) hit tool, and at least a puncher’s chance to stay at SS? Is that something you might be interested in? Thought so. —Mike Ferrin

1:11 Oakland Athletics
Actual Selection: Addison Russell, SS
Re-Draft Selection: David Dahl, OF, Colorado Rockies (2012 no. 10 pick)
Draft Position Change: -1
Explanation: Dahl has a ton of offensive ceiling. Couple that with speed that plays up on offense and defense, and I think the upside is worth the risk. His approach is raw, but I very much believe in the player. —Mauricio Rubio

1:12 New York Mets
Actual Selection: Gavin Cecchini, SS
Re-Draft Selection: Marcus Stroman, SP, Toronto Blue Jays (2012 no. 22 pick)
Draft Position Change: +10
Explanation: Wacha might have been the best value of the first round thus far, but Stroman isn't far behind. His height hasn't changed, but he's answered questions about whether he can be a starting pitcher despite his stature. He's in the majors, has swing-and-miss stuff, and should be a rotation mainstay from this point forward.—Craig Goldstein

1:13 Chicago White Sox
Actual Selection: Courtney Hawkins, OF
Re-Draft Selection: Eddie Butler, SP, Colorado Rockies (2012 no. 46 pick)
Draft Position Change: +33
Explanation: Butler saw his stock rise even more this season, as he owns a bevy of pitches and dominated the minors enough to earn a promotion to the bigs. Butler has the big-time fastball, which works well with his excellent changeup. At pick no. 14, he can’t stay on the board any longer. —Tucker Blair

1:14 Cincinnati Reds
Actual Selection: Nick Travieso, SP
Re-Draft Selection: Albert Almora, OF, Chicago Cubs (2012 no. 6 pick)
Draft Position Change: -8
Explanation: Almora’s numbers haven’t coalesced yet, but we’re talking about a 20-year-old kid playing against significantly older competition in the Florida State League. His scouting profile is what won me over here. His approach is at the plate is terrific and beyond his years, and he has the athleticism to stay in center field. I'm banking on the power projectability/maturation and the possibility of a 20-homer player with an otherwise great all-around game. —Mike Gianella

1:15 Cleveland Indians
Actual Selection: Tyler Naquin, OF
Re-Draft Selection: Jose Berrios, SP, Minnesota Twins (2012 no. 32 pick)
Draft Position Change: +17
Explanation: What Berrios lacks in ideal size, he more than makes up for with his stuff. He throws an easy mid-90s fastball with a low 70s curve and a low 80s breaking ball that moves more like a slider. Even more impressive, he can command and control all three pitches to both sides of the plate. Berrios' ceiling makes him a steal with the 15th pick. —Chris King

1:16 Washington Nationals
Actual Selection: Lucas Giolito, SP
Re-Draft Selection: Nick Williams, OF, Texas Rangers (2012 no. 93 pick)
Draft Position Change: +77
Explanation: Williams is going to be limited to left field, which puts a damper on the ultimate profile. But he's going to hit and hit some more with average to above-average power; that'll do just fine in the mid-first round. —Ron Shah

1:17 Toronto Blue Jays
Actual Selection: D.J. Davis, OF
Re-Draft Selection: Lucas Sims, SP, Atlanta Braves (2012 no. 21 pick)
Draft Position Change: +4
Explanation: The book on Sims, like the books on a lot of high school pitchers, was that he was a big-risk, big-reward type. Now, two years in, some of that potential appears to be realized, but even now, he's a risky pick. It looks like he has three pitches developing to MLB potential, and that's a nice human being to have, even in a system as pitching-heavy as Toronto’s. (Repeat after me: You can NEVER have enough pitching. Ever.) I popped him here for two reasons. One is that the Blue Jays pick again in a few moments (although oddly, I will be fired between now and then), so they can afford some risk here. The other is that the Blue Jays play in the AL East, and sometimes, you have to take some big risks to survive in that division. —Russell Carleton

1:18 Los Angeles Dodgers
Actual Selection: Corey Seager, SS
Re-Draft Selection: Stephen Piscotty, RF, St. Louis Cardinals (2012 no. 36 pick)
Draft Position Change: +18
Explanation: I was thinking about taking Zimmer or Fried here, as I believe that they have the highest upside of any players left, but their injuries gave me pause. I think Piscotty is going to hit and hit and hit. To me, he was the best healthy player remaining. —Chris Rodriguez

1:19 St. Louis Cardinals
Actual Selection: Michael Wacha, SP
Re-Draft Selection: Alex Wood, SP, Atlanta Braves (2012 no. 85 pick)
Draft Position Change: +66
Explanation: Am I throwing an unjustified pity party, or did the most attractive talent dry up just in time for my turn? Wood isn't an ultra-high-ceiling, flamethrowing, top-of-the-rotation type, but he does have the virtue of already being in the big leagues. He's succeeded in multiple major-league roles—the lefty began the season in the rotation, shifted to the pen, and is now being re-stretched out as a starter—and he probably won't be a bust in either. At this point in the draft, I'm happy to settle for an un-sexy but proven producer. —Ben Lindbergh

1:20 San Francisco Giants
Actual Selection: Chris Stratton, SP
Re-Draft Selection: Kyle Zimmer, SP, Kansas City Royals (2012 no. 5 pick)
Draft Position Change: -15
Explanation: Zimmer has certainly had a frustrating 2014, with “minor” injuries piling up to wipe out his season to date. There’s also a sense of foreboding that the Royals organization is lying to us about their prize prospect, and that his shoulder is in much deeper trouble than they're letting on. That said, he was still the no. 34 prospect in baseball before the season, and it's hard to imagine his skills have degraded this badly. The easy velocity and wipeout curve were working briefly in Double-A and should play in the majors, especially in an organization like that of the Giants, who are known for excelling in pitcher health and development.—Ian Lefkowitz

1:21 Atlanta Braves
Actual Selection: Lucas Sims, SP
Re-Draft Selection: Tom Murphy, C, Colorado Rockies (2012 no. 105 pick)
Draft Position Change: +84
Explanation: I got my pocket picked on Kyle Zimmer, who would have been tremendous value here. With no healthy players I loved left on the board, I took a help-soon college bat in Univ. of Buffalo's Tom Murphy. Murphy probably isn't an impact guy with his bat or glove, but he can be a solid solution at backstop for a winning team. —Al Skorupa

1:22 Toronto Blue Jays
Actual Selection: Marcus Stroman, SP
Re-Draft Selection: Max Fried, SP, San Diego Padres (2012 no. 7 pick)
Draft Position Change: -15
Explanation: Being sidelined for the first two-plus months of the season with a forearm injury has put the left-hander on the prospect back burner, but there is plenty of upside in his left arm. Fried still carries no. 2 starter potential and needs only to show that he’s healthy to regenerate the interest garnered from his Midwest League season in 2013. —Bret Sayre

1:23 St. Louis Cardinals
Actual Selection: James Ramsey, OF
Re-Draft Selection: Jesse Winker, OF, Cincinnati Reds (2012 no. 49 pick)
Draft Position Change: +26
Explanation: Winker lacks top-shelf athleticism. However, he has the chance to atone for that with his bat. He marries an advanced approach with a quality hit tool and some power potential. Unfortunately, Winker's defensive projection is limited to left field, so he'll need to hit to make it. The good news is that there's no indication that he won't develop into at least an average hitter down the road.—R.J. Anderson

1:24 Red Sox
Actual Selection: Deven Marrero, SS
Re-Draft Selection: Lewis Brinson, OF, Texas Rangers (2012 no. 29 pick)
Draft Position Change: +5
Explanation: A pure upside selection, Brinson has the loudest tools left on the board, and he's flashing indications that they might be turning into skills. The outfielder has four plus potential tools, and his strikeout rate—a major concern entering a repeat of Low-A—is slowly trending downward. Brinson is the only player with role-7 upside still available, and as the sure-thing options get slimmer, that's tough to pass on. —Daniel Rathman

1:25 Tampa Bay Rays
Actual Selection: Richie Shaffer, 3B
Re-Draft Selection: Kevin Plawecki, C, New York Mets (2012 no. 35 pick)
Draft Position Change: +10
Explanation: There were no glaring problems with Plawecki entering the 2012 draft, but even as a solid defender with a polished bat, he slid to the supplemental round. Since that time, Plawecki's bat has proven to play and the glove is good enough to keep him behind the plate every day; that's a heck of a value in the late first round. —Mark Anderson

1:26 Arizona Diamondbacks
Actual Selection: Stryker Trahan, C
Re-Draft Selection: Tyrone Taylor, OF, Milwaukee Brewers (2012 no. 92 pick)
Draft Position Change: +66
Explanation: There's undoubtedly some homerism with this pick, as my fandom lies with Milwaukee, but there's a lot of upside with a guy like Tyrone Taylor. He possesses the tools to play an above-average center field, which is valuable in itself. Also, while the bat needs continued refinement, he already has 24 doubles and four homers in the pitcher-friendly Florida State League. Taylor's raw tools make him a legitimate wild-card option at the end of the first round. —J.P. Breen

1:27 Milwaukee Brewers
Actual Selection: Clint Coulter, C
Re-Draft Selection: Tyler Naquin, OF, Cleveland Indians (2012 no. 15 pick)
Draft Position Change: -12
Explanation: There have been doubts surrounding Naquin's bat and how it will play against advanced pitching, but he has silenced the critics on his way up the ladder, posting a .326/.377/.448 line in 290 PA in Double-A this season. With a cannon for an arm and enough range for CF, he brings the type of all-around tool package that often goes under-appreciated but should pay dividends at the highest level. —Doug Thorburn

1:28 Milwaukee Brewers
Actual Selection: Victor Roache, OF
Re-Draft Selection: Tim Cooney, SP, St. Louis Cardinals (2012 no. 117 pick)
Draft Position Change: +89
Explanation: For as drool-worthy as the first 15 picks were, these last 15 will be lucky to produce much more than sleep-induced drool. Cooney is a polished, command-focused groundball machine. There are much higher ceilings available, but let's utilize Milwaukee's second straight pick for a high-floor option. —Paul Sporer

1:29 Texas Rangers
Actual Selection: Lewis Brinson, OF
Re-Draft Selection: Daniel Robertson, SS, Oakland Athletics (2012 no. 34 pick)
Draft Position Change: +5
Explanation: Two years into his pro career, Robertson's hit tool has carried over to the pro game as expected, and he's begun to realize his power projection. He's also stayed healthy, lived up to expectations on both sides of the ball, and shown solid development in his plate approach. With most of the elite-ceiling prospects well off the board, this is a strong value at this spot, even though he's still a few years away from potentially reaching the big leagues and lacks franchise-altering upside. —Todd Gold

1:30 New York Yankees
Actual Selection: Ty Hensley, SP
Re-Draft Selection: Rio Ruiz, 3B, Houston Astros (2012 no. 129 pick)
Draft Position Change: +99
Explanation: Lack of baseball experience, signability, and a blood clot procedure elevated the risk of selecting Ruiz in 2012; the Astros, with extra money with which to hunt for talent, picked him in the fourth round. Two years later, the gamble is paying off: He's alleviated concerns with his glovework at third base, and there's no questioning his hitting and power, both of which emerged in the second half last season and have further improved this year. —Andrew Koo

Related Content:  Draft,  Prospects,  Scouting,  Amateur Draft

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