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Celebrating 50 years of the draft

Draft : : Story
Allan Simpson        
Published: Friday, May 30, 2014

2014 Perfect Game 2014 MLB Draft preview content

50 Signature Developments in 50 Years of Drafting

Major League Baseball is conducting its 50
th first-year player draft next week, and we thought it would be a Golden Opportunity to take a 50-year retrospective on the baseball draft as part of our general preview coverage of this year’s proceedings.

Naturally, we’ve enlisted our resident draft historian, Allan Simpson, to take a look back at some of the highlights—and lowlights—of the draft through the years, and shed some of his own perspective on how the draft has evolved, and the impact it has had on the game.

Allan has done so by randomly selecting 50 signature moments, developments, topics or trends in draft history, beginning with the first draft in 1965. He’ll focus on some of the best or worst picks ever made, drafts that changed the fortunes of franchises—positively or negatively—for years to come, the success and failure rates of select draft picks, changing demographics and the impact escalating signing bonuses have had on the process. He’ll also slip in a few draft trivia items that even some of the more-knowledgeable observers of the draft may never have been aware of.

We’ll run our 50/50 special over a two-day period, with the first 25 items scheduled for Monday and the other 25 on Tuesday—in plenty of time to digest a little draft history before the 50
th draft kicks off with a bang on Thursday.

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