The 2021 OAPBA draft, the league’s first-ever online draft, was held via Zoom on Sat., Feb. 9, with the Beefers selecting San Diego Padres SS Fernando Tatis first in the draft.
Altogether, twelve LA Dodgers were drafted, followed by San Diego (11 players) and Atlanta (10 players). Washington reliever Kyle Finnegan was the only National player to be drafted, picked up by Walt Taylor’s Whatevers in the 15th round.
After Tatis’ selection in the number one slot, Dodgers C Will Smith went second in the draft, going to the Whatevers. The next seven picks were all pitchers, headlined by Brewers reliever Devin Williams (Devils) in the third overall pick, followed by starters Trevor Bauer (Tsunamis), Yu Darvish (Otters), Dinelson Lamet (Beefers), Tony Gonsolin (Whatevers), reliever A.J. Minter (Devils), and starter Corbin Burnes (Tsunamis).
Other notes from the draft:
RP Darren O’Day returned to the Devils for the third time in his OAPBA career. O’Day previously pitched for the Devils in 2010-2011 and 2015-2016. He has a lifetime record of 14-12, 3.34 with 10 saves. O’Day was picked up in the fifth round by the Devils
Another veteran returnee was LH reliever Tony Watson, who returned to the Beefers after being . Watson was a Beefer cut after 2019, but was re-drafted in the 13th round by the Beefs. He had been on the Beefer relief staff since 2014-2019 with 7-14, 2.79 lifetime record, all with the Beefs.
Four players named Brandon were selected: Brandon Belt, Brandon Nimmo, Brandon Woodruff and Brandon Kintzler.
Tyler-mania: The Devils drafted relievers Tyler Webb and Tyler Matzek, increasing the number of Tylers on the Devils roster to four. Tyler Clippard and Tyler Glasnow were already on the Devils roster.
Bargains: The Tsunamis and Otters both acquired standout players late in the draft.. The Tsunamis picked up RF Mike Yazstremki in the 11th round and the Otters then pounced on RF Michael Conforto with the next pick. Both players are considered premium players, but were overlooked as the draft entered the late rounds.
Armed and dangerous: The Tsunamis went for arms in the first 10 rounds of the 2021 draft, selecting pitchers with their first 10 picks before breaking the string in the 11th round with C Tucker Barnhart.
Second time’s the charm: Two draftees return to OAPBA after long absences from the league. First baseman Brandon Belt, who played for the Piranhas in 2013, was drafted by the Beefers. Second baseman Donovan Solano, who played for the Road Warriors in 2014, was drafted by the Devils in te 2021 draft and subsequently dealt to the Whatevers for starter Zack Wheeler.
The complete lineup of draftees (listed in order of draft:
Beefers: SS Fernando Tatis, SP DiNelson Lamet, 1b Brandon Belt, CF Brandon Nimmo, RP Stefan Crichton, RP Shane Greene, LF-DH A.J. Pollock, RP Richard Bleier, RP John Gant, RP Tony Watson, 3b Alex Bohm, Closer Raisel Iglesias, SP Antonio Senzatela, SP Joe Musgrove, RF Will Myers, SP Julio Urias.
Whatevers: C Will Smith, P Tony Gonsolin, DH Marcel Ozuna, RP James Hoyt, RP Adam Kolarek, DH-LF Dominic Smith, SP Brandon Woodruff, RP Lucas Sims, RP Trevor Rosenthal, IF Miguel Rojas, RP Jake McGee, 2b Donovan Solano, CF Trent Grisham, SP Dakota Hudson, RP Kyle Finnegan, LF Austin Slatef.
Devils: RP Devin Williams, RP A.J. Minter, C Austin Nola, SP Zach Davies, RP Darren O’Day, SP Zack Wheeler, RP Merrill Kelly, SP Dustin May, RP Jarlin Garcia, CF Starling Marte, SS Dansby Swanson, 3b K’Bryan Hayes, CF Raimal Tapia, IF Jon Berti, RP Tyler Webb, LF Alex Dickerson, RP Tyler Matzek, SP Adam Wainwright.
Tsunamis: SP Trevor Bauer, SP Corbin Burnes, RP Ian Anderson, SP Max Fried, RP Eric Yardley, RP Yimi Garcia, SP Kwang-Hyun Kim, RP Edwin Diaz, Closer Brandon Kintzler, RP Pierce Johnson, C Tucker Barnhart, RF Mike Yazstremski, DH Jesse Winker, 3b Eugenio Suarez, OF Tim Locastro, 1b Eric Hosmer, 3b Edwin Rios, CF Dalton Varsho, IF Luis Guillorme, OF Ramon Quinn.
Otters: SP Yu Darvish, RP Chris Martin, SP Zac Gallen, 2b Jake Cronenworth, RP Drew Pomeranz, Closer Jeremy Jeffress, RP Dylan Floro, SS Corey Seager, RP Richard Rodriguez, RP Victor Gonzalez, LF Chris Taylor, RF Michael Conforto, SP Sixto Sanchez, C Andrew Knapp, RP Grant Dayton, RP Rowan Wick.