2021 MLB Draft order might be normal after all

Despite rumors to the contrary, MLB reportedly won’t radicalize its draft format for 2021

The 2020 MLB season has thrown nothing but changeups, but that won’t be the case with the 2021 MLB Draft. With Kumar Rocker expected to be the No. 1 selection, the top pick will still go to the team which finishes this 60-game campaign with the worst record. While a small sample size, 60 games is large enough to determine which teams need the prospect advantage more than others.

The March agreement, struck between the owners and MLBPA, gave Rob Manfred the power to introduce a new draft order had the season been canceled long before the completion of a 60-game season. At this point, though, we’ve seen enough, per Jeff Passan.

“Even though 60 games doesn’t give the full picture of who’s really good and who isn’t, the source said it’s highly likely that the draft order will be determined by this year’s record,” Passan wrote in a weekly column.

What could the MLB Draft order look like in 2021?

While it was initially feared that MLB would resort to a format combining the win percentages of the last two seasons rather than taking just 2020 into account, that is no longer a legitimate question.

As of Tuesday, the top-five would look something like this:

1. Pittsburgh
2. Texas
3. Boston
4. Arizona
5. Washington

The Pirates have been absolutely dreadful this season, and could use a foundational arm like Rocker to boost their farm system. It’s not enough to make them a winner alone, but it’s a start. The Detroit Tigers, meanwhile, which have the worst combined win percentage over the past two seasons, will not select first yet again. They’d be slotted at seventh, with these things subject to change over the course of the final week.

Next: Red Sox could be biggest losers in a revamped 2021 draft

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