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The Daily Chop: MLB Draft begins with lots of surprises

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The MLB Draft began on Wednesday and the first round was anything but predictable.

2020 Major League Baseball Draft Photo by Alex Trautwig/MLB Photos via Getty Images

The Braves select Jared Shuster with the 25th overall pick in the 2020 draft

The Braves made a surprising selection with the 25th overall pick, taking left-hander Jared Shuster from Wake Forest. The tall southpaw is heralded for his mid-90’s fastball and plus changeup, along with his ability to hide the baseball upon delivery. While this was viewed as an underslot pick for bonus pool considerations, Shuster does have considerable upside and many consider him one of the best left-handed pitchers in the draft class.

Draft Day 1: Pick-by-pick rundown, analysis

MLB.com provides an in-depth rundown of all picks made on Day 1. The excitement began early on, as the Orioles shocked the industry by selecting Heston Kjerstad from Arkansas. While the outfielder was largely considered a lock for the top half of the first round, no one could have predicted that he would be taken ahead of Austin Martin, Asa Lacy, or Max Meyer. Martin fell to the Blue Jays with the fifth pick despite most evaluators rating him as the second-best prospect in the class.

Road to Atlanta Podcast: Breaking down the Braves’ 1st Round Pick, Jared Shuster

Commissioner: ‘We’re going to play baseball’

Seemingly overlooked in the hours that lead up to the draft were these comments by the commissioner, who stated unequivocally that “we’re going to play baseball.” The hope is that those comments refer to a deal being struck, with at least 75 games being played, but that may be wishful thinking.

Former All-Star Claudell Washington dies at 65

In more somber news, former All-Star Claudell Washington passed away on Wednesday. Washington spent six seasons in Atlanta, helping the Braves win a division title in 1982 and earning his second All-Star selection in 1984. He was 65 years old upon his passing.