Many Pirates fans, including this one, wanted the Bucs to select Rice third baseman Anthony Rendon with the top overall pick. The problem was Rendon’s shoulder – we, the fans, knew that Rendon had an injury, but its severity wasn’t clear. The Pirates and other teams had access to Rendon’s medical information.
Ultimately, the Pirates picked UCLA pitcher Gerrit Cole instead. What happened after that suggests that the Pirates weren’t the only team concerned about Rendon’s injuries, as Dejan Kovacevic tweets:
#Pirates concerns about Rendon injuries could not possibly have gotten more validation than what just happened. #MLBDraft
After the Pirates, the Seattle Mariners (who were widely connected to Rendon), Arizona Diamondbacks, Baltimore Orioles and Kansas City Royals all passed on Rendon. Whatever was in those medical reports must have been scary indeed, and Pirates fans should probably let their fascination with Rendon fall by the wayside. Rendon might end up being a star, of course, but the fact that five teams passed on him indicates that the balance of upside and risk wasn’t there for the Pirates to take him first overall. We’ll see whether the pick is a great one, an injury flop, or something in between for the Nationals.