Last week, Major League Baseball held its 2021 amateur draft. This year's edition was shorter than the pre-pandemic version (20 rounds instead of 40) and was held alongside the All-Star Game festivities in Denver, Colorado.
Changes to the event's structure and logistics aside, it was still … well, a draft. That means the same questions that arise after every draft are being asked, such as, which teams selected their new top prospect?
With an acknowledgement that these evaluations are always subjective, we've identified four teams below that we believe can answer in the affirmative.
Pittsburgh Pirates: C Henry Davis
The odds are in favor of the team with the No. 1 pick selecting their new top prospect. That certainly appears to be the case with the Pirates. Prior to the draft, their top youngster was right-hander Quinn Priester. Priester is promising, and there's an argument to be made that he should remain No. 1. Davis, though, feels like a more certain quantity thanks to an offensive profile that saw him seldom whiff and frequently make loud contact. There are evaluators who question his ability to stick behind the plate, but for now he projects to become Pittsburgh's catcher of the future, even if he's unlikely to develop into the next Buster Posey (or, perhaps, the next Adley Rutschman).
Texas Rangers: RHP Jack Leiter
Leiter became the first pitcher selected thanks to an intriguing combination of polish and upside. He has a high-grade fastball that fits the modern preferences: it has good velocity and vertical break, and it arrives on a flat plane.