Oakland Athletics MLB Draft Review: Reports and grades for each pick

Oakland Athletics (Photo by Peter Aiken/Getty Images)
Oakland Athletics (Photo by Peter Aiken/Getty Images) /
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Oakland Athletics
Oakland Athletics (Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images) /

5. Oakland Athletics’ fifth-round pick

  • Who the Athletics took: Stevie Emanuels, RHP, Washington
  • 157th overall pick
  • Expected Signing Bonus: Full slot value
  • Future-Value Grade: 35+
  • Grade: B+

If there’s one trend in the A’s draft class, every one of their selections would have been drafted substantially higher if they’d played an entire season and maintained their rates of production.

High school bats like Soderstrom are considered risky propositions even with a larger sample and Guldberg was probably hampered the most since he was unable to play while dealing with his shoulder injury, but Criswell, Acker, and Emanuels all were trying to show scouts they could handle starting.

Emanuels was a high-leverage reliever for Washington last season, but began making longer appearances on the Cape and was putting up impressive numbers as a starter this spring (0.79 ERA, 15.1 K/9, 3.6 BB/9) when the season was abruptly halted.

His fastball tends to sit in the low-90s, but consistently hit 95-96mph when he worked out of the pen. At 6-foot-5, 210 pounds, Emanuels has the frame to handle a starter’s workload and has a premium breaking ball that projects as a plus.

At the college level, Emanuels hasn’t been forced to go beyond his best two pitches. Although he has shown a potentially average changeup, at the next level, he’ll need to become comfortable with a third offering to have success starting.

At this point in the draft, it’s pretty rare to find a prospect of this caliber that doesn’t require an over-slot bonus. However, once again, the shortened season really devalued the impressive work Emanuels was doing.

Like Criswell, Emanuels strike-throwing abilities remain a reason for concern, but his strong two-pitch arsenal is pretty well suited for the bullpen if he is unable to get a good grip on commanding his pitches.