The 2023 MLB Draft has ushered in a new wave of talented young players to the minor leagues of baseball. Commencing this year’s event, the Pittsburgh Pirates made the opening pick by choosing LSU right-hander Paul Skenes as the No. 1 overall pick. Shortly after, the Washington Nationals made history by selecting his LSU teammate, outfielder Dylan Crews, at No. 2 overall. This marked the first time in draft history that a pair of teammates were chosen consecutively to begin the draft.
As anticipated, the subsequent three picks consisted of a trio of outfielders. Max Clark (Detroit Tigers), Wyatt Langford (Texas Rangers), and Walker Jenkins (Minnesota Twins) were long regarded as the remaining top-tier talents from a group of five players.
The most unexpected occurrence in the first round was that, despite a deep pool of high school shortstops with first-round potential, Arjun Nimmala was the first among them to be chosen at No. 20 overall by the Toronto Blue Jays. Conversely, several players from that group, who were anticipated to be first-round selections, slipped past the opening round.
3. Minnesota Twins
The Twins were the biggest winners of the first-ever MLB draft lottery, trading up from No. 13 to No. 5 and selecting Walker Jenkins, a high school outfielder with the potential to be a five-tool player. They then selected electric prep right-hander Charlee Soto in the first round of the supplemental draft, offensive second baseman Luke Keaschall of Arizona State in the second round, powerful high school outfielder Brandon Winokur in the third round, and right-handed pitcher Tanner Hall of Southern Mississippi in the fourth round.
The latter has one of the strongest changeups and controls in the Draft. Among the prep ranks, right-hander Dylan Questad is ranked fifth, while left-hander Ross Dunn of Arizona State is ranked tenth, and right-hander Paulshawn Pasqualotto of California is ranked twelfth.
2. San Francisco Giants
Before selecting Virginia two-way standout Bryce Eldridge with the 16th overall choice, the Giants seriously evaluated shortstop Walker Martin from Colorado. Joe Whitman of Kent State, the best lefty on the roster according to recent rumors, might be leaving the game before the second inning even begins.
The Giants lost free agent Carlos Rodón, but they still had a chance to get Martin in the middle of the second round and Whitman with their compensatory selection later in the second round. Good picks for the Giants include Auburn shortstop Cole Foster (third round), Maryland catcher Luke Shliger (sixth round), Grayson (Texas) CC right-hander Josh Bostick (eighth round), and Louisville catcher Jack Payton (eleventh round), including slick-fielding Tennessee shortstop Maui Ahuna (fourth round).
1. Cincinnati Reds
Both Rhett Lowder of Wake Forest and Ty Floyd of Louisiana State were standouts in the College World Series, and the Reds snagged both in the first round of the Draft.
Then they managed to choose shortstop Sammy Stafura in the second round and outfielder Cole Schoenwetter in the fourth, both of whom were highly regarded prospects coming out of high school. Also joining the Reds are three draft picks: third-rounder Arkansas’s Hunter Hollan, ninth-rounder Lipscomb’s Logan Van Treeck, fifth-rounder Long Beach State’s Connor Burns, and sixth- and eighth-round picks Virginia outfielder Ethan O’Donnell and Stanford first baseman Carter Graham, respectively.