Baseball for the Thinking Fan

Login | Register | Feedback

btf_logo
You are here > Home > Baseball Newsstand > Discussion
Baseball Primer Newsblog
— The Best News Links from the Baseball Newsstand

Saturday, July 10, 2021

What If the Mariners Had Taken Francisco Lindor in the 2011 Draft?

So in the interest of exploring all their options, they brought a 17-year-old shortstop from Florida’s Montverde Academy up to Safeco Field for a workout. This kid wasn’t considered a serious top-five pick, but various Mariners scouts had fallen in love with his glove, athleticism, and personality, and wanted to give him one last look in front of the club’s top brass.

He passed the test with flying colors, erasing any lingering doubts on the field and charming everyone he met off it. And the Mariners quickly became tempted to throw caution to the wind and draft him far higher than consensus would’ve deemed reasonable.

“He had so much fun,” says Tony Blengino, who was then a special assistant to Zduriencik. “There was not a nervous or tentative bone in his body. He was just all juice, all fun. … We took him out to lunch and ‘face of the franchise’ is all you could think of. This was the kind of kid who’d be in the big leagues when he’s 20, and if he hits for power—which was my only concern going in—then you’ve got a superstar on your hands.”

The shortstop had flown to Seattle on his own, so after the audition, two senior Mariners executives—McNamara and national cross-checker Mark Lummus—dropped by his hotel to check on him. “I thanked him for flying out by himself and wished him the best in the upcoming draft,” McNamara told me over email. “He gave me a hug and said, ‘I hope you guys take me.’”

They didn’t. With the no. 2 pick in the 2011 draft, Seattle chose Danny Hultzen, a left-handed pitcher from the University of Virginia. And six picks later, Cleveland took the kid: Francisco Lindor.

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: July 10, 2021 at 10:44 AM | 10 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: francisco lindor, mariners

Reader Comments and Retorts

Go to end of page

Statements posted here are those of our readers and do not represent the BaseballThinkFactory. Names are provided by the poster and are not verified. We ask that posters follow our submission policy. Please report any inappropriate comments.

   1. JJ1986 Posted: July 10, 2021 at 12:36 PM (#6028479)
I assume they would have traded him to Cleveland for Nick Swisher a few years later.
   2. Howie Menckel Posted: July 10, 2021 at 12:39 PM (#6028480)
either way, the Mets would be stuck with his $341 million contract in 2021.

:)
:(
   3. Bourbon Samurai stays in the fight Posted: July 11, 2021 at 10:24 AM (#6028571)
The real story in that draft was Rendon making it all the way to the Nats. No way they win their world series if they'd had Hultzen or somebody
   4. Tom Goes to the Ballpark Posted: July 11, 2021 at 05:33 PM (#6028626)
This article should be an argument in favor of letting teams trade draft picks.
   5. Starring Bradley Scotchman as RMc Posted: July 11, 2021 at 08:06 PM (#6028661)
Fun fact: Hultzen has pitched exactly 36.1 innings since 2013. (He turns 32 in November.)
   6. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: July 11, 2021 at 10:15 PM (#6028678)
This article should be an argument in favor of letting teams trade draft picks.

Why?
   7. Tom Goes to the Ballpark Posted: July 12, 2021 at 07:03 PM (#6028825)
The premise of the article is that the Mariners passed on the player they wanted because they couldn’t justify taking him with that pick. In the NFL or NBA the Mariners could have traded down and gotten the player they wanted while receiving additional compensation from a team that wanted to move up in the draft.
   8. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: July 13, 2021 at 09:34 AM (#6028917)
The premise of the article is that the Mariners passed on the player they wanted because they couldn’t justify taking him with that pick. In the NFL or NBA the Mariners could have traded down and gotten the player they wanted while receiving additional compensation from a team that wanted to move up in the draft.

They could have just taken him. No need to trade.
   9. kubiwan Posted: July 13, 2021 at 11:15 AM (#6028926)
They could have just taken him. No need to trade.


This. This, this, this, this. 1000 times this. The goal of a drafting team must be "get good players," not "make picks that roughly match the industry consensus so you don't get criticized immediately." All the maneuvering and trading up/down doesn't matter one bit if you don't actually draft good players.
   10. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: July 13, 2021 at 11:49 AM (#6028929)
This. This, this, this, this. 1000 times this. The goal of a drafting team must be "get good players," not "make picks that roughly match the industry consensus so you don't get criticized immediately." All the maneuvering and trading up/down doesn't matter one bit if you don't actually draft good players.

Concur. If you think the guy is the best player available, how can you not "justify taking him with that pick"?

Football and basketball are a little different in that you have lineup considerations, since top draftees start right away. In MLB it's easy; always take the player you think is going to have the best career.

You must be Registered and Logged In to post comments.

 

 

<< Back to main

BBTF Partner

Dynasty League Baseball

Support BBTF

donate

Thanks to
BarrysLazyBoy
for his generous support.

You must be logged in to view your Bookmarks.

Hot Topics

NewsblogMiami Marlins' Richard Bleier only pitcher since 1900 with 3 balks in same at-bat, gets tossed vs. Mets
(37 - 12:48am, Sep 29)
Last: The Gary DiSarcina Fan Club (JAHV)

NewsblogNew York Yankees star Aaron Judge hits 61st home run of season, tying Roger Maris' mark
(3 - 12:08am, Sep 29)
Last: Walt Davis

NewsblogJapan's affinity for Los Angeles Angels star Shohei Ohtani examined in 'Searching for Ohtani'
(4 - 12:06am, Sep 29)
Last: What did Billy Ripken have against ElRoy Face?

NewsblogWhy Major League Baseball needs to do a better job of appreciating regular season greatness
(21 - 11:23pm, Sep 28)
Last: cardsfanboy

NewsblogOMNICHATTER for the week of September 26 - October 5, 2022
(95 - 11:18pm, Sep 28)
Last: The Yankee Clapper

NewsblogSoto, Shmoto: Joey Meneses Is Washington’s Pleasant Surprise
(3 - 10:48pm, Sep 28)
Last: Howie Menckel

NewsblogBill James: How Reliable are Won-Lost Records, Part I
(31 - 10:29pm, Sep 28)
Last: Born1951

Newsblog2022-23 Preseason NBA thread
(304 - 8:08pm, Sep 28)
Last: 57i66135 is a hard word for me.

NewsblogThe difficult postseason decision Mets face
(23 - 4:39pm, Sep 28)
Last: Walt Davis

NewsblogBarry Bonds Reveals How Close He Was to Joining Yankees
(8 - 4:28pm, Sep 28)
Last: SoSH U at work

NewsblogPirates add Miguel Andújar after Yankees designate former Rookie of the Year runner-up for assignment
(13 - 3:54pm, Sep 28)
Last: The Yankee Clapper

NewsblogYankees’ threat of sitting Aaron Judge finally ended long rain delay with Red Sox
(23 - 2:22pm, Sep 28)
Last: Never Give an Inge (Dave)

NewsblogOT Soccer Thread - European Leages Return
(265 - 1:03pm, Sep 28)
Last: SoSH U at work

NewsblogThe Official Mets Fan Self-Immolation Thread
(986 - 11:19am, Sep 28)
Last: bobm

NewsblogOT: Wrestling Thread November 2014
(2533 - 11:12am, Sep 28)
Last: 57i66135 is a hard word for me.

Page rendered in 0.5496 seconds
45 querie(s) executed