First Overall Picks Without MLB Experience

Carlos Correa joined an exclusive club when the Astros selected him first overall in last night's draft. Some of the game’s best and most accomplished players — Chipper Jones, Alex Rodriguez, Josh Hamilton, Adrian Gonzalez, Joe Mauer, Justin Upton, David Price, Stephen Strasburg and Bryce Harper, for example — were the top selections in their respective drafts.

Correa also joined a smaller, less celebrated club when Bud Selig called his name. He’s now one of six first overall selections who hasn’t appeared in an MLB game. Here’s a list of the others:

  • Gerrit Cole, Pirates (2011) – Cole, 21, has a 2.53 ERA with three times as many strikeouts as walks at Class A Bradenton this year. He's on the path to the Major Leagues. 
  • Tim Beckham, Rays (2008) – Beckham is now serving a 50-game suspension following a second violation of the minor league drug prevention and treatment program. The 22-year-old owns a .263/.330/.379 batting line in five minor league seasons.
  • Matt Bush, Padres (2004) – Bush, who was selected as a shortstop, is now a pitcher in the Rays' organization. He's on the restricted list following an arrest for driving under the influence and leaving the scene of an accident.
  • Brien Taylor, Yankees (1991) – Taylor was considered an elite pitching prospect, but he injured his shoulder in a physical altercation following the 1993 season and his pitching ability deteriorated. Yahoo’s Jeff Passan told the story in detail back in 2006.
  • Steven Chilcott, Mets (1966) – The Mets selected Chilcott with the top pick in baseball's second ever draft, but the catcher never played above Triple-A in seven pro seasons.

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