Of this year's 84 All-Stars, six were drafted first overall in their class. These guys were destined to make All-Star teams, mostly out of high school. Another 24 All-Stars were drafted within the first 30 picks, so their success is no surprise. Among drafted players, who belongs on the opposite end of the spectrum as the most surprising All-Stars?
- Padres closer Heath Bell has to take the cake, as the Mets signed him as an undrafted free agent in 1998. Bell had been drafted by the Devil Rays the year before in the 69th round.
- Braves reliever Jonny Venters was drafted by the Braves in the 30th round in '03, 907th overall. Giants closer Brian Wilson went in that same draft class, in the 24th round.
- Blue Jays third baseman Jose Bautista, possibly the best hitter in baseball these days, was a 20th round pick of the Pirates in 2000, though he signed for $500K.
- Phillies third baseman Placido Polanco went to the Cardinals in the 19th round in '94, a year after he'd been chosen in the 49th round by the White Sox.
- Yankees reliever David Robertson was drafted in the 17th round in '06, though he signed for $200K.
- Yankees catcher Russell Martin went in the 17th round to the Dodgers in '02, an improvement over his 35th round by the Expos two years prior.
- Others drafted outside of the top 200 picks: James Shields, Jordan Walden, Matt Joyce, Howie Kendrick, Tyler Clippard, Kevin Youkilis, and Matt Holliday. And we have to mention starter Ryan Vogelsong, who was a fifth round pick by the Giants in '98 but hadn't pitched in the Majors since '06 until this year.