The MLB is one of those leagues where guys can come any which route to make it to the majors. Getting drafted from High School,4 year College, Junior College, Leaving during early from whatever school they go to, Signings from other countries and so on. The thing with baseball is that it does not matter where you come from if you can throw 97 at a division 3 or NAIA that would still be 97 at the Division 1 level.
Having gone to two smaller schools you can see that is true. It does not matter where you go if you can play the game you will get looked at and you will get picked up by a team. If you could not tell from the title this is all about the best guys that went the JuCo Route to get to the MLB. Every single guy on this list has some tie to a Juco. They could have signed to one then been picked up in the draft out of high school. Others may have been Division 1 guys that wanted to transfer and went to a JuCo for a year then got picked up. Then there are the guys that went JuCo from the start.
In all of the Majors Last year there were 118 guys that have some sort of a JuCo tie, again some maybe more then others. Most of those were Pitchers (71), 97 is 97 remember. The next Closest position was the Outfield (28). The rest were all Infield positions (19).
Taking what i thought to be the Top from each position putting them into an “All-Star/All-Pro” Team.
These pitchers were not the aces of their staffs but they played huge roles in them. Some of these names you may know. Jon Grey went on to play at OU and was Lights out. Brad Peacock was one of the big reasons the Astros got to and won the World Series this year. Then Chase Anderson Being almost unbeatable this year. This would be tied for the 3rd best staff in the league if they were a team.
Relief pitching by JuCo guys this year was another thing that was lights out. None of these guys had loosing record and all had a solid ERA. Having a 2.62 Bullpen Era as a whole is not somehting to laugh at or look the other way. If you had to go to these guys then you probable aren’t going to beat them. This would be the best Bullpen in the thats not even including the Closer.
Kimbrel was not someone you wanted to have to face in a close game. 5-0 recored 35 saves and a sub 2 era. Not to mention he averaged just under 2 Strike outs an inning. He may have had few blown saves but as a whole had a great season for a closer.
This infield is not somehting i would want to have to face. Solid on both sides of the ball with multiple All-Stars on it. The three big ones being Kinsler, Longoria and Simmons anything hit to the left side of the infield is getting scooped up. Then when it gets thrown to first it is not getting by Morrison.
What may surprise a lot of you is that Bryce harper didn’t make the cut to be a starter on this team. This outfield just doesn’t let things drop or get away from them. Then when you have to stop them from hitting good luck. Batting .302 with almost 500 hits they put the ball in play and made the other team get them out.
When it came to the bench is where you find a few big name guys that you would think to see as starters. Bryce Harper, Josh Reddick, Brandon Belt. All the guys on the bench played big roles. Reddick helping get the Astros to the World series. Harper being a huge back bone for the nationals. Belt being a day in and day out guy playing all over the field.
This team if put together would be the arguable the best team in the league just by the numbers. Having a total WAR of 81.4 puts them 29.2 points ahead of the best team in the league last year. Granted two of the guys were on that team. It is still impressive.
With 22 Different schools being represented, 3 with multiple on the list (NCTC, San Jac, and Chipola) It helps to show that it doesn’t matter what school you come from even if is from a smaller JuCo you can make an impact at the Major league level.