Few teams have drafted as well as the Cleveland Indians through the first two days of the 2015 MLB draft. It seemed obvious that the Indians front office had a plan to snatch up arms early and go for bats on Tuesday.

On Monday, Cleveland got what could be the biggest steal in the draft when it took former No. 1 overall pick Brady Aiken at No. 17 overall. Aiken was drafted by the Houston Astros in 2014, but there were questions about the health of his elbow. The Astros lessened their signing-bonus offer from $6.5 million to $5 million, and Aiken rejected it.

He became just the third No. 1 overall pick in MLB draft history not to sign. He had committed to the UCLA Bruins, but he chose to attend IMG Academy instead. He blew out his elbow and had to have Tommy John surgery.

Here he is back in the draft. The Indians are hoping the injury happened early enough in the young man’s career for him to recover and return to the form that had scouts raving about him in 2014. Players like the New York Mets’ Matt Harvey, who have undergone the procedure and seemingly returned as strong as ever, are an inspiration. 

If Aiken pans out, the Indians’ brass will look like geniuses. 

Aiken isn’t the only awesome pick the Indians made. Cleveland also selected a gamer by the name of Mark Mathias who could play as a shortstop or second baseman should he climb to the major leagues. USA Baseball tweeted these congratulations to the program’s alum:

Mathias seems like an offensive-minded second baseman, but Tony Lastoria of Scout.com sees more versatility. He said:

He is a line drive hitter with some good size and strength, though his power potential as a pro is questionable. He shows a solid approach and should translate well to the pros and along with the hit tool and a bit of a run tool he brings some interesting upside with the bat. It remains to be seen how strong he is defensively as he is average at best with a fringy arm, but he has some experience at third base and first base, and some think he could even play some outfield if needed.

Obviously, the Indians have Jason Kipnis at second base, and he will likely be the team’s choice for the next few years. Because of that, Mathias’ versatility makes him an even more attractive prospect. Even if second is determined to be his best position, he would provide the Indians a trade chip for future seasons.

Here’s a look at all of the grades for each team through 10 rounds of selections. To see every pick, check out the MLB.com draft tracker. Just below the table is a look at two other teams that had great drafts.


Minnesota Twins

Of all the pitching prospects in this draft, the guy I like the most is Tyler Jay. The Minnesota Twins took the Illinois Fighting Illini star with the sixth overall pick, and the lefty could be a staff ace within the next four to five years.

Despite standing just 6’1″, 180 pounds, Jay’s fastball still tops out at 95 mph, which is plenty fast for a left-hander with his control. Many see him as a reliever currently, but his makeup seems to be that of a starter. He did have 24 saves in three seasons with Illinois, but his easy delivery and control would seemingly tempt the Twins to try him in the rotation. 

Jay walked just seven in 129 innings pitched in college and could be a second or third starter during his initial call up to the minors with bigger things ahead. Jay addressed the topic with Matt Loveless of WAND-TV, but the 21-year-old just seems to like pitching at this point.

“I know people want to see me start, but it is what it is. I like doing both.”

Twins fans may just love watching him pitch for their team in the next few years.

Another notable selection for the Twins was Kolton Kendrick from Oak Forest Academy in Amite City, Louisiana. Kendrick is a powerful left-handed slugger whom scouts seem to be divided on. MLB.com said this of Kendrick’s prospects in the majors:

Kendrick may have the best raw power in a draft that’s short on promising sluggers. He packs a lot of strength in his 6’3″, 235-pound frame and can put on a show in batting practice that would do a big leaguer proud. Nevertheless, there’s a split camp on how well his power will play in pro ball. Scouts who like him think his top-of-the-scale raw pop could translate into 30 homers annually in the majors. Others think he has a grooved swing and lacks bat speed and believe he’ll have trouble making contact against better competition.

Todd Buster of Nola Baseball tweeted about Kolton’s mammoth power back in 2013:

He’s definitely going to have to be a first baseman or designated hitter, but the lefty has the looks of a former Minnesota Twins first baseman/DH, and that’s David Ortiz. If he can make consistent contact in the minors and majors, this eighth-round selection could be a hit in Minnesota.


Tampa Bay Rays

It’s hard not to love Garrett Whitley. The Tampa Bay Rays selected the potential five-tool player with the 13th overall pick in the draft. The 18-year-old from Niskayuna High School in New York has tremendous speed that will keep him as a center fielder in the major leagues.

He also has some legitimate potential to grow into a power threat. During the initial MLB TV broadcast, Whitley displayed the character of a future leader. When a kid has Whitley’s talent and has his head on straight, he’s aimed in the right direction. He reminds me of Ian Desmond at the plate and former Chicago Cubs prospect Corey Patterson in the outfield.

The Rays bolstered their pitching future with the fourth-round selection of Brandon Koch out of Dallas Baptist University. The program has become a steady pipeline for pitching, and Koch is one of the latest exciting prospects. At 6’1″, 205 pounds, the hard-throwing right-hander can reach the mid-90s on his fastball and also has a hard slider that MLB.com calls one of the best breaking balls in the draft.

He could be a setup man down the road in a bullpen with a dominant closer. Koch represents a strong pick who will almost certainly reach the big leagues relatively quickly.


All height and weight references per MLB.com

All stats per the Baseball Cube.

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