Mookie Betts (2011, 5th round)
It’s hard the believe that this five-tool stud fell to the fifth round but the Red Sox are still reaping the benefits of drafting Mookie Betts.
Betts produced a solid rookie season, hitting .291 with a .820 OPS, 18 home runs, and 21 steals. The following season was his true breakout year though, as he made his first of three consecutive All-Star appearances (with a fourth almost certainly on the way this summer). In 2016, Betts hit .318/.363/.534 with 31 home runs, 113 RBI and 26 steals to finish as the runner-up in the MVP race.
Two years later, Betts would take home the MVP hardware, along with a batting title, and Silver Slugger award. He hit .346 with a 1.078 OPS, 32 home runs, and 20 stolen bases.
As great as Betts has been at the plate, he’s even better in the field. With three Gold Glove Awards in his four full MLB seasons and a staggering 96 defensive runs saved in 501 career games at the position, Betts is on his way to becoming the best defensive right fielder in franchise history.
It may seem premature to rank Betts this high, ahead of Hall of Famers and those who proved themselves over a far longer period of time. That’s fair, although we can’t ignore that Betts is on pace to have a better career than any of them and he’s only 26 years old.
Mookie is already 18th among Red Sox position players with 32.3 career fWAR, while everyone ahead of him on that list has at least one more season of experience in Boston under their belts. There’s plenty of time for him to pile up more awards while adding to his statistical resume.