Best Draft Pick This Century: Joe Mauer
There have been nine players chosen as the No.1 draft pick in the MLB Amateur Draft in this century.
Two names stand out among those nine players since they have performed very well at the major league level. Those two players are Joe Mauer and Adrian Gonzalez.
However the best player drafted in the 2000s in my estimation is Mauer.
Mauer was drafted No.1 in the 2001 draft while Adrian Gonzalez was drafted No.1 in the 2000 draft.
Mauer hit nine homers in 1227 minor league plate appearances while hitting .332.
Mauer has hit eleven homers this season in 122 plate appearances and is hitting .414 with an OBP of .500 and is slugging a phenomenal .838.
He won the 2004 AL batting title with a .347 batting average. Then in 2006 he won his second AL batting title with a .328 batting average. He has hit two more homers this season than he did in 2008 when he hit nine in 633 total plate appearances.
It was May 1 before he played his first game this season but he has made up for lost time by driving in 32 runs already with today being the last day of the month.
He has a lifetime batting average of .322 and is hitting .414 this season as of this morning. He has never hit lower than .293 in a baseball season at any level.
Mauer was drafted ahead of some well known players in the first round of the 2001 draft:
2. Mark Prior
4. Gavin Floyd
5. Mark Teixeira
19. Mike Fontenot
38. David Wright
44. Jayson Nix
Mauer is only 26 but is well on his way to a Hall of Fame career. He may have only 55 homers after five and a third seasons but Hall of Fame voters will give him serious consideration.
He probably won’t hit more than 300 homers at the most and may never reach 3000 hits but he may be the exception that makes it into the Hall of Fame without making the benchmark numbers usually required to gain admission into the Hall of Fame.
Unless Mauer has injury issues he should be admitted into the Hall of Fame by 2029.