Dansby Swanson, Carson Fulmer, and Walker Buehler all went in round 1 as expected (1, 8, and 24 respectively). Their slot values are $8,616,900, $3,470,600, and $2,094,400, so their accountants and/or girlfriends are happy. I expect all to sign quickly, and all to sign close to slot. It wouldn't surprise me if Swanson signed a below slot deal in the $7.5 million range, either. Point is, they put in the work and they deserve this. We'll have them in Omaha, but to expect any more from them in black and gold would be like a teen-aged girl still crying over that haircut leaving that British boy band (I'll let resident teen girl Your Uncle Mike fill in the gaps on this).
Here's what MLB.com's Jim Callis has to say about each pick:
I like this pick. There was some talk that they might try to get a deep discount here and get cute in later rounds, but you've got to take who you think is the best player available and they did that. Swanson has the tools to be an All-Star.
The White Sox have to be thrilled to get the best pitcher in the draft, according to the MLB Pipeline board, and they were really hoping to get him, Tate or Jay. You wish Fulmer was a little bigger and threw more strikes, but you have to give him credit that he's brought quality stuff ever since he became a starter in the middle of last season.
This looks like a nice value for the Dodgers. I thought Buehler had a chance to go in the top 10 and I really didn't think he'd get past the 15th pick or so. To compare and contrast him to Vanerbilt teammate Carson Fulmer, he doesn't have that kind of power, but there's more polish, more control and command.
As for the commits, we certainly didn't leave last night unscathed, but still, it could have been worse. We had no '15 commits go in the first round, but we did have Nolan Watson chosen by Kansas City at pick 33 as compensation for losing James Shields in free agency. They will have at least $1,825,200 to throw at the young man, so... you know... don't get your hopes up. That's put it in the bank and never have to work again money. The only good news is the Royals are likely to not offer much over slot, as they picked fellow Indy pitcher Ashe Russell at #21, and I hear he's not going to be happy with just slot money. Still, they're likely to throw the full $1.8 mil at Watson, and you don't need a famous literary detective/opium addict to tell you what he will likely do when shown that check. Watson, we hardly knew ye (likely).
Shortly after, at pick 42, Cleveland picked rail thin projectable RHP Triston McKenzie, reprising their "screw you, Vandy" strategy of last year when they tabbed LHP Justus Sheffield in the supplemental 1st round. Slot money at #42 is $1,468,400 (loosely translated as "fuck you" money). He gone (likely).
In the only mild shocker of the night, Brentwood's own Bryce Denton was chosen by the St, Louis Cardinals at pick #66 in the 2nd round. He'll be offered north of slot ($935,400), so it'll be a real tough sell to get him to turn that down. However, I think Corbs will be able to with this kid. I have no inside information, but for some reason, I think he'll turn down the Brinks truck and star at Hawkins Field (please and thank you).
Here's the good news: it easily could have been worse. At this point last year, we'd lost our top 5 commits, and the 6th, Dylan Cease, was expected to be offered 1st round money after the Cubs pulled a money saving play in their first few picks (and that's exactly what happened). All signed with their respective teams.
At least three other commits could have been tempted by Scrooge McDuck style money pools (and we're not out of the woods yet, as the entire 3rd round is slotted north of 500K, and teams can still make huge under-slot plays by signing college seniors in their next few picks to save up to be able to offer $1 mil+ to these kids). Again, there's no guarantee the MLB Money Train won't pull in to their stations, but it's good news for us that Donny Everett (ranked #21on the Baseball America top draft prospects list), Alonzo Jones (#64), and Chandler Day (#78), among others, did not have their names called.
Here's what MLB.com had to say about Everett still being on the board:
There is an array of guys considered to be "Day 1 talent" who didn't come off the board on Monday, for a variety of reasons. Tennessee high school pitcher Donny Everett sits atop the "best-available-player" board, ranked No. 23 on the Draft Top 200 rankings. The big right-hander belonged in the conversation with some of the better prep arms in the class, ranking higher than Day 1 selections like Beau Burrows and Austin Smith, both high school right-handers. But Everett has a commitment to Vanderbilt and reportedly put out a high price tag, so it's possible his name won't be called for a while.
Stay tuned. Day 2 draft coverage will resume at 11:30am CT.