Consensus held true on Day 1 of the MLB draft as the Baltimore Orioles used the first pick overall to grab C Adley Rutschman.
He is an offensive savant, really. His junior year numbers at Oregon State were absolutely epic.
If this holds true at the big league level (and it rarely does with catchers, by the way) then it will be much like having an ‘extra’ bat in the lineup since most backstops have the offensive impact of, well, a real backstop.
If he can call a game too that would more than justify this pick. I’m going on record saying that it’s an extraordinary gamble, even in a sport where drafts are full of gambles every year.
The Washington Nationals used pick #17 to draft right-handed P Jackson Rutledge. He last pitched at San Jacinto (Texas JUCO) but was committed to play next season at the University of Kentucky. Big loss for the Wildcats as the 6’8″ Rutledge is sure to be in the Nats’ minor-league system instead.
The Nats might need a few rotation arms soon as Max Scherzer and Stephen Strasburg are well into the second halves of their careers. After trading away top prospect Lucas Giolito to the White Sox last season, the Nationals signed budding star Patrick Corbin in free agency. He’s been quite good as the 3rd starter behind Scherzer and Strasburg but they’ll need more pieces to compliment his efforts in 2-3 years.