With the 2020 MLB Draft just around the corner, MLB Pipeline has been busily churning out content on this year’s class, whether it’s looking at the Top 200 Draft prospects, profiling some of the top players in the class or putting out mock drafts.
In addition to that coverage, we’ve also been breaking down previous Draft classes through various historical lenses. Today, we continue that trend with a look at the best all-time Draft pick from each state, a group that features 15 current Hall of Famers and many more who are Cooperstown-bound.
And don’t forget to tune in to watch the Draft live, June 10 at 7 p.m. ET on MLB Network.
Alabama: Frank Thomas, 1B (73.8 WAR)
Selected by the White Sox with the seventh-overall pick in the 1989 Draft out of Auburn, Thomas won consecutive MVP Awards (1993-94) as well as a batting title (.347 in ’97) during his illustrious 19-year career, batting .301/.419/.555 with 521 home runs. He was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 2014.
Arizona: Barry Bonds, OF (162.8)
After being taken by Pittsburgh with the sixth-overall pick in 1985, the Arizona State product went on to win seven MVP Awards and earn 12 All-Star nods while racking up the most homers (762), walks (2,558) and intentional walks (688) in baseball history. Bonds’ best stretch was from 2001-04, when he won four consecutive MVP Awards while averaging .349/.559/.809 with 52 homers per season. He sits atop the all-time WAR leaderboard, ahead of Babe Ruth (162.1)
Arkansas: Torii Hunter, OF (50.7)
A first-round pick (No. 20 overall) out of the Arkansas prep ranks in 1993, Hunter was a five-time All-Star who won nine Gold Gloves during his 19-year career between Minnesota, Los Angeles and Detroit. He averaged 3.8 WAR per season from 2001-10, a stretch during which he also accrued 38.3 of his 50.7 career WAR.
California: Rickey Henderson, OF (111.2)
A fourth-round pick by the A’s out of Oakland Technical HS, Henderson became the most accomplished leadoff hitter in baseball history — he’s the all-time leader in runs scored (2,295) and stolen bases (1,406) — during his 25-year career, thanks to his blend of speed, patience and power. The 10-time All-Star and 1990 AL MVP was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 2009.
Canada: Joey Votto, 1B (62.0)
The Toronto-born first baseman was the Reds’ second-round pick in 2002 and has spent his entire 13-year career with the organization, slashing .307/.421/.519 over 1,717 games. The six-time All-Star garnered MVP honors in 2010 — one of six Top 10 finishes for Votto in the NL MVP race — and leads all active players in OBP.
Colorado: Roy Halladay, RHP (64.2)
The Blue Jays’ 1995 first-round pick (No. 17 overall) garnered eight All-Star nods, tossed a perfect game — plus a postseason no-hitter — and won the Cy Young in both leagues during his 16-year career, capturing the prestigious award with Toronto (2003) and Philadelphia (2010). The right-hander was posthumously inducted into the Hall of Fame in 2019.
Connecticut: Jeff Bagwell, 1B (79.9)
The Red Sox traded Bagwell to Houston a little more than a year after they had selected the University of Hartford product in the fourth round of the 1989 Draft. He spent his entire 15-year career with the Astros, compiling a .297/.408/.540 batting line with 449 homers. He made four All-Star appearances and garnered honors as the NL MVP (1994) along the way before entering the Hall of Fame in 2017.
D.C.: John Flaherty, C (1.6)
A 25th-round pick in 1988 out of George Washington University, Flaherty’s knack for making contact and solid defense behind the plate enabled him to carve out a 14-year career during which he played for five different teams.
Delaware: Delino DeShields, 2B/OF (24.4)
The Expos made DeShields their first-round pick in 1987, selecting the speedster with the No. 12 pick out of Seaford High, and he finished second in the NL Rookie of the Year race in 1990. He racked up 463 steals and ultimately batted .268/.352/.377 while playing for five different teams during his 13-year career.
Florida: Alex Rodriguez, SS/3B (117.5)
A-Rod reached the Major Leagues as an 18-year-old in 1994, a little more than a year after the Mariners selected him with the No. 1 overall pick in the ’93 Draft. The three-time AL MVP and 14-time All-Star totaled 696 homers and 3,115 hits across 22 big league seasons and ranks 12th on the all-time WAR leaderboard.
Georgia: Kevin Brown, RHP (67.8)
Taken with the fourth-overall pick in the 1986 Draft, Brown, a Georgia Tech product, recorded five Top 6 finishes in the Cy Young race and led the NL in ERA in both 1996 (1.89, Marlins) and 2000 (2.58, Dodgers). He eclipsed the 200-inning mark in nine of his 19 seasons in the big leagues before retiring following the 2005 season.
Hawaii: Sid Fernandez, LHP (32.8)
A third-round pick by the Dodgers in 1981 out of Kaiser High, Fernandez garnered a pair of All-Star selections (1986-87) and won 114 games during his 15 seasons in the big leagues.
Idaho: Keith Foulke, RHP (20.7)
A Lewis-Clark State College product whom the Giants took in the ninth round of the 1994 Draft, Foulke posted two 40-plus save seasons and racked up 191 saves during his 11-year career. He’s perhaps best remembered for recording the final out for Boston in the 2004 World Series.
Illinois: Jim Thome, 1B/DH (72.9)
Selected out of Illinois Central College by Cleveland in the 13th round of the 1989 Draft, Thome slugged 612 home runs — he hit 52 in ’02 and led the Majors with 47 the next year — across 22 seasons in the big leagues en route to a spot in the Hall of Fame in 2018.
Indiana: Scott Rolen, 3B (70.1)
The former second-round pick (1993) and Jasper High product was the 1997 NL Rookie of the Year with the Phillies and ultimately tallied seven All-Star nods and eight Gold Gloves in 17 seasons, slashing .281/.364/.490 with 316 homers and 517 doubles.
Iowa: Jim Sundberg, C (40.5)
The former University of Iowa catcher — who was the No. 2 overall pick in the 1973 January Draft-Secondary Phase — won six straight Gold Gloves (1976-81) and batted .252/.330/.345 in 10 years with the Rangers before moving on to Milwaukee, Kansas City and Chicago. Sundberg returned to Texas for his final two seasons before retiring after the 1989 campaign.
Kansas: Davey Lopes, OF (42.4)
A second-round pick in the 1968 January Draft-Secondary Phase, Lopes, a Washburn University alum, was a four-time All-Star with the Dodgers and batted .263/.349/.388 with 1,023 runs and 557 stolen bases in 16 big league seasons.
Kentucky: David Justice, OF/1B (40.6)
The fourth-round pick (1985) from Thomas Moore College took home the NL Rookie of the Year Award in 1990 and finished third in the 1993 MVP race. He earned a pair of All-Star nods during his Braves tenure (1989-96) and another with the Indians (1997), when he also recorded a fifth-place finish in AL MVP voting. Altogether, Justice racked up 305 homers and 1,017 RBIs during his 14-year career, slashing .279/.378/.500.
Louisiana: Chuck Finley, RHP (57.9)
Following his selection as the fourth-overall pick in the 1985 January Draft-Secondary Phase, Finley served as a staple in the Angels’ rotation for 14 seasons (1986-99) and made four of his five All-Star appearances with the organization. He recorded double-digit wins in 12 different seasons and finished his 17-year career with 200 wins and a 3.85 ERA.
Maine: Bill Swift, RHP (20.7)
The University of Maine right-hander was one of the NL’s most successful pitchers from 1992-93, going 31-12 with a 2.51 ERA. He led all Major League hurlers in ERA in ’92 and finished second in the NL Cy Young race the following year.
Maryland: Cal Ripken Jr., SS (95.9)
A second-round pick in 1978 out of Aberdeen High, Ripken won the 1982 AL Rookie of the Year Award and garnered All-Star honors in each of the next 19 seasons before hanging up his spikes following the 2001 season. The two-time AL MVP (1983, ’91) and lifelong Oriole was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 2007 after finishing his 21-year career with 3,184 hits in 3,001 games.
Massachusetts: Tom Glavine, LHP (80.7)
Glavine claimed a pair of NL Cy Young Awards (1991, ’98) and won at least 20 games in five of his 17 seasons with the Braves after they made him their second-round pick in the 1984 Draft. He went on to win 305 games across 22 big league seasons en route to a spot in Cooperstown.
Michigan: Derek Jeter, SS (71.3)
Drafted by the Yankees out of Central High in Kalamazoo with the sixth-overall pick in the 1992 Draft, Jeter made 14 All-Star teams, won five Gold Gloves and led the Bronx Bombers to five World Series titles. He spent 20 seasons in New York, racking up 3,465 hits while slashing .310/.377/.440, and is set to be enshrined in Cooperstown in 2021.
Minnesota: Paul Molitor, 3B/2B (75.7)
Taken by Milwaukee with the No. 3 pick in the 1997 Draft from the University of Minnesota, Molitor spent 15 seasons with the Brewers and ranks among the franchise leaders in stolen bases (412, first), batting (.303, second) and OBP (.367, third). Altogether, the 2004 Hall of Fame inductee batted .306/.369/.448 with 3,319 hits across 21 seasons.
Mississippi: Rafael Palmeiro, 1B (71.9)
Selected by the Cubs with the No. 22 pick in the 1982 Draft following a stellar career at Mississippi State, Palmeiro produced 3,020 hits and 569 home runs during his 20-year career. He made four All-Star teams and won a pair of Silver Slugger Awards as well as three Gold Gloves.
Missouri: Albert Pujols, 1B (100.8)
The 13th-rounder (1999) from Kansas City’s Maple Woods CC kicked off his career by winning the 2001 NL Rookie of the Year. Since then, Pujols has been a three-time MVP, a 10-time All-Star, a batting champion and a two-time World Series champ while totaling 100.8 WAR across 19 seasons. The future Hall of Famer is one of four players (Hank Aaron, Willie Mays and Alex Rodriguez) in baseball history to reach the 3,000-hit (3,202), 600-homer (656) plateau.
Montana: Caleb Frare, LHP (-0.1)
Originally an 11th-round pick by the Yankees in 2012, Frare, who attended Custer County (Miles City, Mont.) High, has seen big league action with the White Sox in each of the past two years, posting a 6.52 ERA across 16 appearances.
Nebraska: Alex Gordon, 3B/OF (35.0)
Taken with the No. 2 pick in the 2005 Draft out of the University of Nebraska, Gordon didn’t blossom in the big leagues until he made a full-time transition to left field in 2011. In nine seasons since then, the 36-year-old Royal has racked up three All-Star selections and seven Gold Gloves while producing a .263/.342/.415 battling line.
Nevada: Greg Maddux, RHP (106.6)
Originally a second-round pick by the Cubs in 1984, the Valley (Las Vegas) High alum is one of two pitchers to win four straight NL Cy Youngs. After picking up his first hardware in his final season in Chicago (1992), Maddux won the award in each of his first three seasons with Atlanta (1993-95). He went 75-29 with a 1.98 ERA across those four seasons and was enshrined in Cooperstown in 2014 after winning 355 games and piling up 3,371 strikeouts, winning 18 Gold Gloves during a 22-year career.
New Hampshire: Carlton Fisk, C (68.4)
A two-sport standout (basketball) at the University of New Hampshire when the Red Sox took him with the No. 4 overall pick in the 1967 January Draft-Secondary Phase, Fisk reached the Majors two years later and became a seven-time All-Star for the organization, slashing .284/.356/.481 with 162 homers. He earned four more All-Star nods in 13 seasons with the White Sox, for whom he batted .257/.329/.438 with 214 dingers. He’s second all-time in games caught (2,226), trailing only Ivan Rodriguez.
New Jersey: Mike Trout, OF (72.8)
A three-time American League MVP and eight-time All-Star, Trout, 28, has racked up 72.8 WAR in his first nine years in the Majors since being taken by the Angels with the 25th pick in the 2009 Draft. His WAR total is far and away the best in franchise history, and overall, the phenom has produced a .305/.419/.581 line with 285 homers, 251 doubles and 200 stolen bases in 1,199 games.
New Mexico: Tony Phillips, IF/OF (50.9)
The No. 10 pick in the 1978 January Draft-Secondary Phase batted .266/.374/.390 with 1,300 runs and 1,319 walks during his 18-year career but never made an All-Star team. The New Mexico Military Institute product accrued 39.3 of his 50.9 career WAR in his first 13 seasons between Oakland and Detroit.
New York: Manny Ramirez, OF (69.3)
Ramirez’s gorgeous right-handed swing earned him a first-round (13th overall) selection by Cleveland in the 1991 Draft, and he went on to become a four-time All-Star and three-time Silver Slugger winner with the club, batting .313 with 236 homers and 804 RBIs across eight seasons. He garnered All-Star honors in each of his eight seasons in Boston — a stretch during which he also recorded six Top 10 MVP finishes — before finishing his 19-year career with a .312 average and 555 home runs.
North Carolina: Madison Bumgarner, LHP (36.8)
San Francisco’s decision to take Bumgarner, a North Carolina prep player, with the No. 10 overall pick in the 2009 Draft changed the course of the franchise, as the left-hander became a driving force in the Giants’ 2010, ’12 and ’14 World Series titles. He received four All-Star selections and compiled a 2.11 ERA over 102 1/3 postseason innings for the Giants before signing a five-year, $85 million contract with Arizona this past offseason.
North Dakota: Neil Wagner, RHP (-0.4)
A 21st-round selection by the Indians in 2005, Wagner is the only player in North Dakota history to reach the Majors after being drafted from an in-state school. The North Dakota State product had a solid 2013 campaign with the Blue Jays, posting a 3.79 ERA in 36 appearances, though, overall, he pitched to uneven results (4.92 ERA) over parts of three years in the big leagues.
Ohio: Mike Schmidt, 3B (106.9)
Schmidt was the Phillies’ second-round pick in 1971, taken out of Ohio University. The 106.9 WAR compiled by Schmidt during his 18-year career with Philadelphia is the highest among all third basemen in baseball history, and he also leads the position in home runs (548). When it was all said and done, Schmidt was a three-time NL MVP (1980, ’81 and ’86), a 12-time All-Star, a winner of 10 Gold Gloves and six Silver Sluggers and a World Series MVP (’80).
Oklahoma: Johnny Bench, C (75.2)
Arguably the best catcher in baseball history, Bench reached the Majors as a 19-year-old in 1967, roughly two years after the Reds had made the Binger High backstop their second-round pick. Bench would lead the Reds to four World Series, including back-to-back championships (1975-76), during an accolade-filled, 17-year career that included NL Rookie of the Year (1968) honors, a pair of MVP Awards (’70, ’72), 14 All-Star selections and 10 Gold Gloves. The 1989 Hall of Fame inductee’s 75.2 WAR is the second-highest in franchise history, trailing only Pete Rose (78.1).
Oregon: Dale Murphy, OF (46.5)
A catcher when the Braves took him fifth overall in the 1974 Draft, Murphy reached the Majors at age 20 in ’76 but didn’t break out until 1980, after the Braves moved him from behind the plate to the outfield. That began an eight-year stretch during which Murphy won consecutive NL MVPs (1982-83), made seven All-Star squads and won five Gold Gloves. And though his production fell off across his final five seasons, Murphy still finished his career with an .815 OPS and 398 home runs.
Pennsylvania: Jamie Moyer, LHP (49.8)
A product of St. Joseph’s University whom the Cubs selected in the sixth round in the 1984 Draft, Moyer would pitch 25 seasons in the big leagues, totaling 4,074 career innings between eight different organizations before retiring at age 49 after the 2012 season. The left-hander’s best years came with Seattle (1996-2006), where he recorded 145 of his 269 career wins and posted a 3.97 ERA over more than 2,000 innings. He earned his only All-Star nod (2003) during that stretch, not to mention a trio of Top 6 finishes in the AL Cy Young race.
Puerto Rico: Carlos Beltrán, OF (70.1)
The Manati, Puerto Rico, native and former second-round pick (1995) took home AL Rookie of the Year honors in ’99 after hitting 22 homers with 108 RBIs. Beltrán’s best years, however, came after he left the Royals, as he went on to make nine All-Star appearances while also earning three Gold Gloves and two Silver Sluggers with the Mets, Giants, Cardinals, Yankees and Rangers. His best season (8.2 WAR) came as a Met in 2006, when he had a .982 OPS with career-high marks in home runs (41) and RBIs (116) en route to a fourth-place finish in the NL MVP race. Altogether, Beltrán produced a .279/.350/.486 line with 435 homers and 312 steals during his 20-year career.
Rhode Island: Jerry Remy, 2B (14.6)
Selected by the then-California Angels in the eighth round of the 1971 January Draft-Secondary Phase out of Roger Williams University, Remy reached the Majors at age 22 in 1975 and received his only All-Star selection in ’78, after he had been traded to the Red Sox. He ultimately played 10 seasons in the big leagues, batting .275/.327/.328 with 1,226 hits and 208 stolen bases in 1,154 career games.
South Carolina: Jimmy Key, LHP (48.9)
Key turned down the White Sox as a 10th-round pick out of high school before signing with Blue Jays in 1982, after the club had selected the Clemson southpaw in the third round. A five-time All-Star during his 15-year career, Key posted baseball’s best ERA in 1987 (2.76) and led the Majors in wins with the Yankees in ’94 (17-4), finishing second in the AL Cy Young Award voting in both seasons. He was a driving force in the Blue Jays’ back-to-back World Series titles (1992-93) and compiled a career 3.15 ERA in 68 2/3 postseason innings.
South Dakota: Blake Treinen, RHP (8.2)
The A’s traded Treinen, a South Dakota State product, to the Nationals roughly two-and-a-half years after the club had taken the hard-throwing righty in the seventh round (2011). After making steady progress with the Nats early in his big league career, Treinen was dealt back to the A’s in July 2017 and emerged as an AL All-Star in ’18, when he posted a 0.78 ERA with 38 saves and an 11.2 K/9 as the team’s closer.
Tennessee: Todd Helton, 1B (61.8)
The Rockies found a franchise player in Helton, whom the club selected with the No. 8 pick in the 1995 Draft out of the University of Tennessee. His prime seasons in Colorado (1998-2007) included five All-Star selections, four Silver Slugger Awards and a trio of Top 10 NL MVP finishes. Helton’s best season was in 2000, when he led the Majors in batting (.372), slugging (.698), OPS (1.162), doubles (59), total bases (405) and RBIs (147), and he hit a career-high 49 homers while driving in 146 runs the next year. He batted .316/.414/.539 with 369 homers and 592 doubles during his 17-year career en route to the highest WAR (61.8) in Rockies history.
Texas: Roger Clemens, RHP (139.2)
The No. 19 pick in the 1983 Draft, Clemens finished sixth in the AL Rookie of the Year race the next year, beginning a legendary 24-year career in which he won seven Cy Young Awards (1986-87, ’91, Red Sox; 1997-98, Blue Jays; ’01, Yankees; and ’04, Astros) as well as an MVP (’86). “The Rocket” twice recorded a 20-strikeout game, the first of which set a new Major League record, and racked up 4,672 strikeouts in 4,916 2/3 career frames. Overall, Clemens is third among pitchers all-time in WAR and strikeouts and ranks ninth in wins (354).
Utah: Jack Morris, RHP (43.5)
A fifth-round pick (1975) by the Tigers out of Brigham Young, Morris was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 2018 after an 18-year career that included three Top 5 finishes in the AL Cy Young Award voting and four All-Star selections. One of the top pitchers during the 1980s, Morris notched 22 more wins than any other pitcher during the decade and recorded the third-most strikeouts (1,629), trailing only Nolan Ryan and Fernando Valenzuela. He twice led the Majors in wins (1981, ’92) and worked more than 240 innings in 10 different seasons, even tossing a career-high 293 2/3 frames in ’83 that paced all big league hurlers.
Vermont: Kirk McCaskill, RHP (14.3)
After a successful career at the University of Vermont that culminated with the Angels taking him in the fourth round of the 1982 Draft, McCaskill spent seven sevens in the club’s big league rotation, posting 78 wins and a 3.86 ERA across more than 1,200 innings. But the right-hander failed to build upon that success as a starter when he joined the White Sox in 1992 and was moved into a bullpen role two years later.
Virginia: Lou Whitaker, 2B (75.1)
The Tigers’ fifth-round pick in the 1975 Draft, Whitaker was the AL Rookie of the Year in ’78 and went on to earn five All-Star selections, four Silver Sluggers and three Gold Glove Awards while playing his entire 19-year career in Detroit. He retired in ’95 as one of four second basemen in baseball history — joining Hall of Famers Bobby Doerr, Rogers Hornsby and Joe Morgan — to record at least 1,000 runs, 1,000 RBIs, 2,000 hits and 200 home runs.
Washington: Ryne Sandberg, 2B (68.0)
Traded to the Cubs in 1982 after the Phillies had drafted him in the 20th round in ‘78, Sandberg spent his entire 16-year career in Chicago, earning 10 All-Star selections, nine Gold Gloves and seven Silver Slugger Awards. He was the 1984 NL MVP and led the circuit in home runs (40) in 1990, the first of his consecutive 100-RBI campaigns. The 2005 Hall of Fame inductee ranks among the top five in Cubs franchise history for homers (282), doubles (403), hits (2,386), runs (1,318), stolen bases (107), total bases (3,787) and WAR.
West Virginia: Joe Niekro, RHP (29.7)
A third-round pick by the Cubs in the 1966 June Draft-Secondary Phase, Niekro made his debut the following year and went on to pitch 22 seasons in the Majors, going 221-204 with a 3.59 ERA. He recorded a pair of Top 5 finishes in the Cy Young race (1979-80) and turned in his best season (6.8 WAR) with Houston in 1982, winning 17 games while tossing 270 frames.
Wisconsin: Jarrod Washburn, LHP (28.1)
Drafted out of Division III University of Wisconsin at Oshkosh in 1995, Washburn finished fourth in the AL Cy Young race in 2002, when he went 18-6 with a 3.15 ERA and helped lead the Angels to a World Series title.
Wyoming: Greg Brock, 1B (10.0)
The 13th-round pick (1979) from the University of Wyoming played 10 Major League seasons, splitting his career evenly between the Dodgers and Brewers. A career .248/.338/.399 hitter, he twice reached the 20-homer plateau and drove in a career-high 85 runs in 1987 in his first year in Milwaukee.
Mike Rosenbaum is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @GoldenSombrero.