Fantasy value of former No. 1 overall picks 

June, 6, 2014
High school pitcher Brady Aiken was the lucky first overall selection in the MLB 2014 Rule 4 draft Thursday night, and if history is our guide, there’s a pretty good chance he’ll end up in the major leagues someday, but no guarantees of success. Aiken, as well as everybody drafted, is really not at all fantasy relevant today, unlike in football and basketball drafts. He’s just 17; as colleague Christopher Crawford wrote, we probably don’t see Aiken until 2017. But as the draft continues Friday, let’s take a look at how No. 1 picks are faring this season, in actual Player Rater rank (which might surprise many). And yes, there are only nine former top picks in the majors this season.

Justin Upton, OF, Atlanta Braves (2005, 27th on the Rater): His owners never seem to be satisfied with his performance, but the No. 11 outfielder on the Rater -- Mike Trout is ninth, incidentally -- is on pace for 36 home runs, 92 RBIs and 17 steals, which would be his best season. Sure, he strikes out a ton and he’s streaky, just try not to watch when he’s going bad. There’s lots of good.