Thursday through Saturday Major League Baseball held their 2014 draft as they powered through 40 rounds in the three days. The Cincinnati Reds had 41 picks, including two first rounders thanks to a compensation pick that came from losing Shin-Soo Choo to the Texas Rangers. This isn’t going to be a rundown on all of the picks, but if that is what you are looking for, I have scouting reports, stats and video on almost all of the picks here. This post is going to look at the draft as a whole.
The draft by the numbers
The Reds selected 23 total pitchers over the draft, with 15 of them being right handed and the remaining eight being left handed. Four outfielders, four third basemen and four catchers were selected. They mixed in two first basemen, two second basemen and two shortstops.
The team selected 14 players from the high school ranks. Seven players came out of junior college, with six of them being in their second years. There were a total of 20 four-year college players selected, with 13 of them being juniors and seven seniors.
There are two players still playing in the college world series. First round pick right-handed pitcher Nick Howard with Virgina and second round pick Taylor Sparks who plays third base for UC Irvine.
The Reds have already signed 14 picks.
Since Chris Buckley took over as scouting director in 2006, the Cincinnati Reds haven’t missed yet on a first round pick. The most recent pick to not have made the Major Leagues and become a starting player is Robert Stephenson from the 2011 draft and of course he is the top prospect in the system. With the Reds selecting a starting pitcher in the first round, it makes the fourth starting pitcher drafted by Buckley in his tenure with the first pick. Mike Leake was the first and is firmly planted in the rotation. The other two past selections are the aforementioned Stephenson and 2012 first round pick Nick Travieso. That makes three of the last four picks by the Reds in the first round being starting pitchers, with only Phillip Ervin breaking that streak in the 2013 draft.
While not every pick is going to sign, some will head off to college and some will return to college, a majority of the players drafted will sign. Most of them will wind up playing for either the Arizona League Reds or the Billings Mustangs. One of two of them may begin in full season ball with either the Dayton Dragons or Bakersfield Blaze, though that doesn’t happen too often. The Billings team will begin play on Monday, while the team back in Arizona won’t begin their play until Friday June 20th. The Reds have had several years in a row of a starter coming out of college and dominating in Billings. Tony Cingrani posted a 1.73 ERA there in 2011. Dan Langfield posted a 2.68 ERA for the Mustangs in 2012 and just last season Ben Lively posted a 0.73 ERA. Will someone follow up this year?