Every year at draft time, we are reminded just how inexact the science of projecting major league really is. Mike Piazza was drafted in the 62 round by the Los Angels Dodgers, presumably as a favor to Tom Lasorda. Wasn’t there a scout somewhere that saw something in Piazza that looked like a potential major leaguer? Keith Hernandez was drafted in the 42nd round back in 1971.
And most baseball fans know that Albert Pujols was drafted in the 13th round (402nd overall) in 1999. So for all the players drafted outside the first few televised rounds of the MLB draft, take heart. The 13th can be a lucky number. In every year of the draft save 1975, some player drafted in the 13th round has reached the majors. Here’s our Top 13th Round Draft picks of All-time. Only players who signed the year they were drafted in the 13th round are included.
1. Albert Pujols, St. Louis, 1999
2. Jim Thome, Cleveland, 1989
3. Steve Finley, Baltimore, 1987
4. Jack Clark, San Francisco, 1973
5. Juan Pierre, Colorado, 1998
6. Lenny Dykstra, New York Mets, 1981
7. Jason Bartlett, San Diego, 2001
8. Matt Lawton, Minnesota, 1991
9. Rod Beck, Oakland, 1986
10. Danny Cox, St. Louis, 1981
11. Mike Stanton, Atlanta, 1987
12. Troy O’Leary, Milwaukee, 1987