In the third round the Nats drafted a high school player out of Leedey, Oklahoma, Drew Ward. What makes ward so interesting is that in a similar situation to Bryce Harper, he graduated early from High School to become draft eligible. According to the articles I read he didn’t find out he could enter into the draft until late in the school year. By that time most MLB teams had already developed their draft boards, and since Ward was expected to be in the 14 draft they hadn’t scouted him with the urgency they scouted the 13 draft class. Drew Ward was not unknown in the scout community, in fact he is listed in bleacher reports mock draft for 2014:
13. San Diego Padres: Drew Ward, 3B, Leedy HS, Oklahoma
Playing in a pitcher-friendly park, the Padres will never be a popular destination for free-agent sluggers.
In the local paper write up, is seems like Ward is looking to begin his pro career and not go to Oklahoma next year. This is an example of Rizzo and team taking a risk in the third round. Interesting to watch develop. One this is for certain, much like Harper, he was not going to face good competition his senior year of high school. He set a state record for walks. He was a class B level school in Oklahoma which is a very small school. I read on one site, that we might have been the top position player in the 14 draft, we will never know.
- MLB Draft 2013 results: Thursday’s first-round picks (sbnation.com)