3 recent draft picks the Blue Jays got right, and 2 they will regret
By Darcy Weiss
Ricky Tiedemann - 3rd round - 2021
Ricky Tiedemann was drafted in the third round, 91st overall in the 2021 MLB Draft, and is currently ranked as the Blue Jays’ top prospect, and the 28th prospect in all of baseball. The hard-throwing left-hander has had an impressive beginning to his minor league career with a 2.56 ERA with 140 strikeouts across 91.1 innings pitched. With a fastball grade of 65 and a changeup grade of 70, Tiedemann has some of the best stuff in the minor leagues, and should continue to develop his control, though it has not been an issue for him yet. The Blue Jays selected Gunnar Hoglund in the first round of the 2021 draft, though he was shipped to Oakland as a piece in the Matt Chapman trade. Finding a top-30 league-wide prospect in the third round who projects as a possible cornerstone of the rotation within 3 years is masterful from the team’s front office.
Verdict: Got it right.
Adam Kloffenstein - 3rd round - 2018
Adam Kloffenstein was drafted in the third round, 88th overall in the 2018 MLB Draft. The young right-hander has struggled through his first 300+ minor league innings, holding a 15-20 record with a 4.79 ERA and 1.45 WHIP. He is still just 22 years old and has shown improvements this season in AA with a 2.52 ERA through 25 innings, though the larger sample size suggests his development needs lots more work in order to earn a shot at the big leagues. Only one third of third round draft picks have made the MLB, proving how hard it is to find major league talent in even the top end of the draft. Again, there were several players selected after him that have already impacted their respective major league clubs - Cal Raleigh (3rd round), Jeremy Pena (3rd round), Steven Kwan (5th round), Drew Rasmussen (6th round) and James Outman (7th round), along with Taj Bradley, who is currently ranked as the 18th prospect in all of baseball. Obviously there are going to be players drafted in later rounds that develop into strong major leaguers, but now five seasons removed from this draft, the Blue Jays must be wondering how they missed on those already proven players.