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The 2021 MLB Draft Order Is Set


Editor's note: Baseball America confirmed with an MLB official on Oct. 12 that the 2021 draft order will be determined as usual, with reverse standings of the shortened 2020 season. Language throughout the story has been updated to reflect that.

It a normal year as soon as the regular season ends, the draft order for the following year's draft is fully known.

But nothing has been normal in 2020, and the draft order is yet another item affected by this unusual year. Because the 2020 MLB season was only 60 games long, 102 games short of a normal season, the agreement between Major League Baseball and the Major League Baseball Players Association allows MLB commissioner Rob Manfred to set the draft order.

However, Baseball America confirmed Monday that the 2021 draft order will be compiled in the normal fashion—lined up in order from worst record to best. The 60-game season meant there were more ties in winning percentage than normal. If MLB follows the same tiebreakers as it has normally, the team with a worse record in 2019 gets the advantage in breaking ties for draft order.

Related: See the first 10 picks of our 'Way Too Early' 2021 Mock Draft

This is the fifth time the Pittsburgh Pirates have selected first overall. Their most recent No. 1 pick was righthander Gerrit Cole out of UCLA in 2011. They also selected righthander Bryan Bullington No. 1 in 2002; righthander Kris Benson in 1996 and third baseman Jeff King in 1986.

The Texas Rangers, who pick second, have not selected this high since 1974, when they picked righthander Tommy Boggs. The Rangers only other picks at two or higher were in 1973, when they selected lefthander David Clyde first overall, and 1969 when the then Washington Senators selected outfielder Jeff Burroughs at pick No. 2.

Picking fourth, the Boston Red Sox will be selecting higher than they have in more than 50 years. In 1967, Boston selected righthander Mike Garman with the third pick. The only time the Red Sox picked fourth was in 1966, when they selected lefthander Ken Brett.

Here is the order for the first and second rounds. The Astros were stripped of their first and second round picks as part of the punishment for their sign-stealing scandal.

  1. Pittsburgh Pirates
  2. Texas Rangers
  3. Detroit Tigers
  4. Boston Red Sox
  5. Baltimore Orioles
  6. Arizona Diamondbacks
  7. Kansas City Royals
  8. Colorado Rockies
  9. Los Angeles Angels
  10. New York Mets
  11. Washington Nationals
  12. Seattle Mariners
  13. Philadelphia Phillies
  14. San Francisco Giants
  15. Milwaukee Brewers
  16. Miami Marlins
  17. Cincinnati Reds
  18. St. Louis Cardinals
  19. Toronto Blue Jays
  20. New York Yankees
  21. Chicago Cubs
  22. Chicago White Sox
  23. Cleveland Indians
  24. Atlanta Braves
  25. Oakland Athletics
  26. Minnesota Twins
  27. San Diego Padres
  28. Tampa Bay Rays
  29. Los Angeles Dodgers

Below is the draft order for all other rounds. The Astros will make their first pick in the third round.

1Pittsburgh Pirates1941.317
2Texas Rangers2238.367
3Detroit Tigers2335.397
4Boston Red Sox2436.400
5Baltimore Orioles2535.417
6Arizona D-Backs2535.417
7Kansas City Royals2634.433
8Colorado Rockies2634.433
9Los Angeles Angels2634.433
10New York Mets2634.433
11Washington Nationals2634.433
12Seattle Mariners2733.450
13Philadelphia Phillies2832.467
14San Francisco Giants2931.483
15Milwaukee Brewers2931.483
16*Houston Astros2931.483
17Miami Marlins3129.517
18Cincinnati Reds3129.517
19St. Louis Cardinals3028.517
20Toronto Blue Jays3228.533
21New York Yankees3327.550
22Chicago Cubs3426.567
23Chicago White Sox3525.583
24Cleveland Indians3525.583
25Atlanta Braves3525.583
26Oakland A's3624.600
27Minnesota Twins3624.600
28San Diego Padres3723.617
29Tampa Bay Rays4020.667
30Los Angeles Dodgers4317.717
*Astros penalized 1st and 2nd round picks as result of illegal sign-stealing.
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With the Pirates picking No. 1, they will tie the Astros, Mets and Padres for the most No. 1 picks in draft history.

TeamNo. 1 Picks
White Sox2
*Assuming Pirates pick No. 1 in 2021
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