Orioles Card "O" the Day

An intersection of two of my passions: baseball cards and the Baltimore Orioles. Updated daily?

Monday, June 7, 2010

Calvin Pickering, 1999 Upper Deck MVP #28

Tonight the Orioles selected high school shortstop Manny Machado with the third overall pick in the first round of the Amateur Draft. He certainly didn't have to wait as long to find out his fate as Calvin Pickering did. In 1995, the O's made the beefy then-outfielder their 35th-round pick. He is the lowest Birds draft pick to actually play in the majors with the club. You hear about the occasional late-round selection that hits it big, like 62nd rounder Mike Piazza. But more often than not, players chosen beyond the 15th round don't make a contribution to the team that drafts them. Either they're lesser talents who were chosen largely as organizational filler, or they're high school players who are likely to go on to college.

In 1969, the Orioles drafted just such a high schooler with their 40th round pick. He was a tall, lanky right-handed pitcher from St. Paul, Minnesota. The youngster chose not to sign with Baltimore, electing to attend the University of Minnesota on a full athletic scholarship. As a Golden Gopher, he played both baseball and basketball. When he graduated, he was drafted by teams in four different professional leagues: the NFL's Vikings, the NBA's Hawks, the ABA's Utah Stars, and the San Diego Padres of MLB. His name was...Dave Winfield.

At least the Orioles got Don Hood and Dave Skaggs out of that 1969 draft...aw, crap.


Rounding Thirty 3rd said...

Winfield ended up going 4th in the MLB draft in 1973. The 3 choices ahead of him were:

Rangers - David Clyde
Phillies - John Stearns
Brewers - Robin Yount

The Brewers are probably OK with Yount over Winfield, but you gotta really feel the Rangers and Phillies are kicking themselves.

On the flip side, the Orioles covered well in '73, despite not getting a HOFer in the 1st round, they picked up a nice pair with Mike Flanagan in round 7 and some High School catcher in round 3 named Eddie Murray.

Kevin said...

Tim - True. That 1973 draft went much better than 1969. Another good one was 1967, when they grabbed Bobby Grich and Don Baylor 1-2!

Commish said...

The Rangers are kicking themselves for mishandling the best baseball pitching prospect I've ever seen. David Clyde pitched for my high school and his father worked with mine.
David could have been a star in the majors had Brad Corbett not wanted to exploit David's notoriety to salvage his franchise. David was beyond unhittable as a high school pitcher, struck out nearly every batter he faced without so much as a weak foul off of him.
What David DIDN'T have was the maturity that he would have needed to make the jump to the Majors. He picked up his diploma, got drafted and took the mound at Arlington Stadium within days. If he's have been handled more carefully I have no doubt that he'd have been a star.

Kevin said...

Bob - David Clyde is the ultimate cautionary tale. The Rangers had their five biggest crowds that year in his starts, but what was the long-term gain?