3). Passing Up Chris Sale In 2010 Draft
Hot draft rumors just before the June 2010 draft indicated that the Kansas City Royals would take Chris Sale with the no. 4 overall pick.
Baseball America draft guru Jim Callis projected Sale to the KC Royals in his mock draft, citing multiple “sources” around major-league baseball linking Sale to Kansas City.
[Note: check out the above link WAY back into Kings Of Kauffman’s early days]
What the KC Royals would do in the draft was a hot question at the time, since conventional wisdom saw Bryce Harper, Jameson Taillon, and Manny Machado as blue chip talents with a significant drop-off after them.
Tallion’s career has, so far, been hindered by injuries. Yet, the pundits were very correct about the futures of Harper and Machado. But if the Kansas City Royals had taken the 6’6″ 175lb (at the time) Sale with the no. 4 overall pick, they wouldn’t have regretted missing out on the three “sure things” of the 2010 draft.
Instead, the KC Royals backed off from Sale and picked Fresno State shortstop Christian Colon at no. 4 overall. Colon was seen as a polished player who could move quickly through the system, but whose upside was more average starter than star. Reports have since circulated that Sale’s frail frame made Kansas City Royals officials doubt that he could hold up in a major-league rotation.
Boy, were they wrong.
Chris Sale fell to no. 13, where the White Sox took him. Sale zoomed through the minor-leagues to debut in September of 2010. Sale has only won since landing a full time job with the White Sox in 2012. Sale has four consecutive All-Star appearances from 2012-2015, and has went 53-37 with a 2.95 ERA.
Folk’s that’s an ace.
Had the Kansas City Royals drafted Chris Sale, they might have had the ace to match up with Madison Bumgarner in the 2014 World Series. Conceivably, the KC Royals could have two straight World Series titles rather than just one.
Of course, Christian Colon had key hits in both the 2014 Wild Card game and the 2015 World Series finale that sealed the title. Perhaps, the Kansas City Royals playoff miracles of the last two seasons would have died on the launching pad without him.
Even so, you’d have to expect that the KC Royals would have been better off with a bona fide ace than a guy who profiles as a utility infielder.
Next: Signing The Clubhouse Cancer