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Ranking the Top 30 former participants (updated, 1-30)

05/18/2016, 11:30am PDT
By B Clemmens

Some are making impacts in MLB (like Piscotty, pictured)

With the MLB Amateur Draft only a few days away, now seems like a good time for a fun exercise.  I was reading an article by Keith Law (ESPN) earlier today where he did a re-draft of the 2006 MLB Draft, based on career WAR of the players, and also taking into account the player's age and chance to still make positive contributions in the future.

So, that got me thinking... If I presented a 30 selection draft with only former BAWSrs as the draft pool, how would it look?  Now, I won't profess to fully understand how WAR (Win Above Replacement) is calculated, but it sort of takes out a lot of the bias about talent and focuses on what a player has actually produced, relative to an average player at his position.

Originally I was thinking that I would first rank the 20 players who have reached MLB.  That would leave 10 more picks and there are some VERY good prospects who will reach MLB soon and will make positive contributions.  So, though it will be subjective and clearly just me projecting for those players, the other 10 picks will be dispersed among the 20 players who have already reached MLB, based on the role I project for them at the MLB level.

Anyway, feel free to send me your thoughts, ideas, critiques, whatever you got!

1. Marcus Semien (25), SS, Athletics, Yrs 4, WAR 5.0 - Selected by the White Sox in the 6th round of the 2011 draft out of Cal, Marcus went to St. Mary's HS (Albany) and attended BAWS in 2007.  He has 10 homers so far this season and I think few would debate that a starting MLB shortstop is a big deal.

2. Stephen Piscotty (25), OF, Cardinals, Yrs 2, WAR 2.7 - Selected by the Cardinals in the 1st round of the 2012 draft out of Stanford, Stephen went to Amador Valley HS (Albany) and was a two-time event participant in 2007/2008.  I think he's one of the best young hitters in the game and eventually will surpass Semien in WAR.  I also think he will make future All-Star games.  But a SS with power still takes the cake for me. 

3. Joc Pederson (24), CF, Dodgers, Yrs 3, WAR 2.5 - Selected by the Dodgers in the 11th round of the 2010 draft out of Palo Alto HS, Joc was a two-time event participant in 2008/2009.  Clearly his career has bright days ahead and you could argue that a 24-year old who has already made one All-Star game, plays CF for a playoff team, and nearly won a Home Run Derby is the top pick.  However, I wonder how long he will stay in CF and I think Piscotty is just a more impactful hitter.  

4. Joe Ross (22), RHP, Nationals, Yrs 2, WAR 2.7 - Selected by the Padres in the 1st round of the 2011 draft out of Bishop O'Dowd HS, Joe was an event participant in 2009 and is the younger brother of Padres starting pitcher Tyson Ross.  Joe's age and already high end performance as a starting pitcher for a team that is a World Series contender means he's for real and might have the highest ceiling of anyone on this list.  Maybe he's the #2 or #3 SP on a lesser team but for now he's a very good #4/#5 for the Nationals.  He's highly athletic and hopefully he stays healthy.  

5. Robert Stephenson (23), RHP, Reds, Yrs 1, WAR .2 - Selected by the Reds in the 1st round of the 2011 draft out of Alhambra HS, Robert was an event participant in 2009.  He's made two spot starts for the Reds this season, getting a W in both.  His stuff is good but he has yet to really figure out how to miss many bats, at least in those two MLB starts.  However, he's a talent with a chance to be a solid #4, maybe a #3 SP for an average MLB team.  

6. Bryan Shaw (28), RHP, Indians, Yrs 6, WAR 3.9 - Selected by the Diamondbacks in the 2nd round of the 2008 draft out of Long Beach State.  Bryan went to Livermore HS and attended the inaugural BAWS in 2004.  Shaw is one of the most important bullpen pieces for the Indians and pitches frequently pitches in the 7th/8th innings.  He has pitched in 338 MLB games, with a high of 80 in 2014, which led the American League, and he has averaged 72 appearances the last 4 seasons.  If Cody Allen were to get injured, Shaw could be the closer in Cleveland.

7. Evan Marshall (26), RHP, Diamondbacks, Yrs 3, WAR .7 - Selected by the White Sox in the 4th round of the 2011 draft out of Kansas State, Evan went to Homestead HS and attended BAWS in 2006 & 2007.  He's been up and down as a reliever for the D'Backs the last three seasons and is currently with the big league club.  He pitched in 57 games for the D'Backs in 2014, with a 2.74 ERA, with a career MLB ERA of 3.48.

8. Andrew Knapp (24), C, Phillies, Yrs 0, WAR N/A -  Selected by the Phillies in the 2nd round of the 2013 draft out of Cal, Andrew went to Granite Bay HS and attended the event in 2009.  He had an outstanding season in 2015 at the A/AA levels and an impressive spring training showed the Phillies he very well could be their starting catcher in 2017.

9. Max Stassi (25), C, Astros, Yrs 4, WAR .5 - Selected by the Athletics in the 4th round of the 2009 draft out of Yuba City HS, Max was an event participant in 2007 & 2008.  Back-up MLB catcher doesn't sound like much, but in fact, it is a VERY valuable position and Stassi, when healthy, has already shown that he can handle the bat at the MLB level.  He's currently behind Bay Area native Jason Castro and C/DH Evan Gattis on the depth chart but he is really just an extended run with the big league club from establishing a career at the MLB level. 

10. Alex Blandino (23), INF, Reds, Yrs 0, WAR N/A - Selected by the Reds in the 1st round of the 2014 draft out of Stanford, Alex went to St. Francis HS and attended the event in 2009.  Alex's calling card is his hitting tool and if he can settle in at the AA level and show that he can hit at the AAA level, the rebuilding Reds could see him as the replacement for Brandon Phillips at 2nd base or at worst as a good hitting utility infielder in 2017, likely no later than 2018.

11. Kyle Barraclough (25), RHP, Marlins, Yrs 2, WAR .5 – Selected by the Cardinals in the 7th round of the 2012 draft out of Saint Mary’s College, Kyle went to Wilcox HS and attended the event in 2007.  He has become an important part of the Marlins late inning relief corps, racking up 40 Ks in only 21 innings pitched this season (as of June 7th).  The more experience he gets and the better he gets at limiting walks, the more value he will have, because with those kind of K numbers, he could have an 8th inning set-up or closer role in the future.

12. Andrew Susac (26), C, Giants, Yrs 2, WAR 1.1 - Selected by the Giants in the 2nd round of the 2011 draft out of Oregon State, Andrew went to Jesuit HS and attended the event in 2008.  He was a contributing member of the Giants 2014 World Series winning team and got into 3 World Series games, going 1 for 4.  Injuries have stalled Andrew a bit but he has showed that he can hit and catch and throw at the big league level.  His career still has a lot left.

13. Tyler Goeddel (23), OF, Phillies, Yrs 1, WAR 0 - Selected by the Rays in the supplemental 1st round of the 2011 draft out of St. Francis HS, the Phillies made Tyler a Rule V draft pick this past offseason.  After a slow start when he looked a bit overmatched, Tyler’s talent and tools are catching up to the speed of the big league game.  He’s currently hitting .250 with 3 HRs, 2 2Bs, and 3 3Bs, with 10 RBI through 112 at-bats (119 plate  appearances).  He has started 32 games (through June 7th) and has a few OF assists, playing mostly LF. 

14. Erik Johnson (26), RHP, Padres, Yrs 4, WAR .2 - Selected by the White Sox in the 2nd round of the 2011 draft out of Cal, Erik went to Los Altos HS and attended the event in 2006.  The Padres recently acquired Erik from the ChiSox in the James Shields trade and many have high hopes that in the Pads system Erik will develop into a solid back-end of the rotation pitcher.  He’s made 18 big league starts and shown flashes that suggest he can stay at that level but he’s going to have to improve his walk rate and being able to keep the ball in the yard.

15. Tommy Medica (28), 1B, Padres (released), Yrs 2, WAR 1.6 - Selected by the Padres in the 14th round of the 2010 draft out of Santa Clara, Tommy went to Bellarmine Prep and attended the event in 2005.  Tommy was released by the Marlins this spring and currently isn’t with a big league club but in parts of two seasons (2013/2014) he showed that he can hit at the MLB level, with 13 2B, 2 3B, and 12 homers in only 309 at-bats. He hit .246 with a .725 OPS.  He may or may not get another shot but putting up a 1.6 WAR and hitting MLB pitching as he did showed that Tommy was one of the best players to come through BAWS.  In fact, he hit a homer in his first MLB game.

16. J.R. Graham (26), RHP, Yankees, Yrs 2, WAR -.4 - Selected by the Braves in the 4th round of the 2011 draft out of Santa Clara, J.R. went to Livermore HS and attended the event in 2007.  The Twins took J.R. in the Rule V draft of 2014 and gave him 39 appearances in 2015, covering 63.2 IP.  He showed good stuff and a decent K rate but gave up a few too many long balls.  The Yankees traded for him this spring for a PTBNL.  His mid-90s stuff and at times plus slider translates well to a MLB pen, but location is always the key in The Show.

17. Robbie Erlin (25), LHP, Padres, Yrs 4, WAR 0 - Selected by the Rangers in the 3rd round of the 2009 draft out of Scotts Valley HS, Robbie attended the event in 2007 and 2008.  The Rangers, in the middle of a pennant race, traded Erlin (and Reno product Joe Wieland) to the Padres at the 2011 trade deadline for reliever Mike Adams.  He had seemingly cracked a spot in the Padres starting rotation this spring but unfortunately injured his elbow and has undergone Tommy John surgery.  The timetable for his return is likely mid-summer 2017.    

18. Cody Martin (26), RHP, Mariners, Yrs 2, WAR -.8 - Selected by the Braves in the 7th round of the 2011 draft out of Gonzaga, Cody went to Dos Palos HS and attended the event in 2006.  The A’s purchased Martin from the Braves in 2015 and the Mariners claimed him off waivers last October.  Martin has been given a shot in three different big league pens so the stuff is there and the make-up is there.  He just has to find some consistency and bite off smaller parts of the plate, as he’s given up too many hits to pitch in higher leverage situations.

19. Mark Appel (24), RHP, Phillies, Yrs 0, WAR N/A – The former #1 overall pick out of Stanford by the Astros in the 2013 draft (just ahead of Kris Bryant), Appel was also a 1st round pick (8th overall) by the Pirates in the 2012 draft.  He attended Monte Vista HS in Danville and attended the event in 2008.  The Astros traded Appel to the Phillies as part of the package for reliever Ken Giles.  He has yet to make his big league debut, which will happen if/when he shows enough command to earn a shot in the Phillies rotation. 

20. Andrew Aplin (25), OF, Astros, Yrs 0, WAR N/A - Selected by the Astros in the 5th round of the 2012 draft out of Arizona State, Andrew went to Vanden HS and attended the event in 2007 and 2008. Andrew had a nice showing for the Astros this spring and profiles as a utility outfielder.  So should an injury arise or the need for good left-handed hitter off the bench, Aplin could make his debut sometime this summer or fall.  He's currently with AAA Fresno.

21. Tyler Cravy (26), RHP, Brewers, Yrs 2, WAR -.9 - Selected by the Brewers in the 17th round of the 2009 draft out of Napa Valley College, Tyler went to Hogan HS and attended the event in 2006.  He's been up and down between AAA and the big club a few times the last two seasons, making some spot starts (8) here and there.  To stick in the big leagues he will likely have to make a move to the pen.

22. Mario Hollands (27), LHP, Phillies, Yrs 1, WAR 0 - Selected by the Phillies in the 10th round of the 2010 draft out of UC Santa Barbara, Mario went to El Cerrito HS and attended the event in 2005.  Mario seemed to have established a spot in the Phillies' bullpen before being derailed by Tommy John surgery.  He is healthy now and throwing well in the minors; he has a 1.04 ERA while striking out 12 and walking one in 8 2/3 innings on his rehab stint to date.

23. J.D. Davis (23), 3B, Astros, Yrs 0, WAR N/A - Selected by the Astros in the 3rd round of the 2014 draft out of Cal State Fullerton, J.D. went to Elk Grove HS and attended the event in 2009.  He is slugging his way through the minors and had a strong showing during spring training.  He is currently at AA, with 9 homers and 33 RBI (as of June 7).  He hit 26 homers with 101 RBI at High A in 2015.

24. Zack Jones (25), RHP, Brewers, Yrs 0, WAR N/A - Selected by the Twins in the 4th round of the 2012 draft out of San Jose State, Zack went to Santa Teresa HS and attended the event in 2007 and 2008.  The Brewers selected Jones in the Rule V draft this past offseason and had plans on him being on their opening day roster before he had some shoulder issues.  He is on a rehab assignment and very likely will be the 22nd player to reach the big leagues from the event.  He is a HARD thrower with a big time breaking ball. 

25. Brett Jackson (27), OF, Cubs/Dbacks/Giants, Yrs 2, WAR -.1 - Selected by the Cubs in the 1st round of the 2009 draft out of Cal, Brett went to Miramonte HS and attended the event in 2004 and 2005.  Brett was a shooting star in the minor leagues and when he broke through in 2012 as the first BAWSr to make the big leagues, the Cubs had high hopes that he was a long term answer in CF.  However, as it was in college and in the minors, Brett struggled to make consistent contact at the MLB level and the strikeouts eventually his undoing.

26. Jeff Kobernus (27), UTL, Nationals, Yrs 2, WAR -.2 - Selected by the Nationals in the 2nd round of the 2009 draft out of Cal, Jeff went to Bishop O'Dowd HS and attended the event in 2005.  Jeff broke through to the big league club in 2013 and had a short stint (24 games) as a utility player.  Unfortunately he hit .167 (but did hit a MLB homer!) and though he got another brief shot in 2014, he was granted free agency by the Giants in November of 2015.

27. Drew Jackson (22), SS, Mariners, Yrs 0, WAR N/A - Selected by the Mariners in the 5th round of the 2015 draft out of Stanford, Drew went to Miramonte HS and attended the event in 2010.  The younger brother of Brett Jackson, the Mariners have high hopes for Drew.  He is currently in the Cal League (high A) and hitting very well, with excellent BB:K ratios and in two minor league seasons has hit .316.

28. Braden Bishop (22), OF, Mariners, Yrs 0, WAR N/A - Selected by the Mariners in the 3rd round of the 2015 draft out of Washington, Braden went to St. Francis HS and attended the event in 2010.  Bishop is currently in Low A but in 400+ minor league at-bats has hit over .300.  The power stats aren't quite there yet but he's stolen some bags and showed himself to be a good outfielder.

29. Mitch Haniger (25), OF, Diamondbacks, Yrs 0, WAR N/A - Selected by the Brewers in the supplemental 1st round of the 2012 draft out of Cal Poly, Mitch went to Archbishop Mitty HS and attended the event in 2007 and 2008.  Mitch is currently in AA with the Dbacks and hitting .283 while showing some extra base power.  He has a chance to break through at some point for the Dbacks, but that would have to be this fall or in 2017.  

30. Tony Renda (25), 2B, Reds, Yrs 0, WAR N/A - Selected by the Nationals in the 2nd round of the 2012 draft out of Cal, Tony went to Serra HS and attended the event in 2008.  Renda is now with his third organization and frankly has shown that he can hit, at the minor league level.  He doesn't have much power to speak of but has always been a grinder type player with a winning type of game.  Perhaps he finds a way to get to the big leagues with a rebuilding Reds organization.