The Los Angeles Dodgers preach the patience of developing homegrown talent and have reaped the benefits of excellent drafting and scouting in recent seasons.
The organization has especially succeeded in those departments over the previous two decades, seeing the likes of Cody Bellinger, Clayton Kershaw and Corey Seager blossom into stars and play significant roles in helping the Dodgers reach the World Series in 2017.
Though, that’s not to say there weren’t a few missed opportunities along the way. One example that stands out is when Los Angeles drafted Paul Goldschmidt out of high school in the 49th round of the 2006 MLB Draft.
While the Dodgers were limited financially and couldn’t offer Goldschmidt an amount over slot, he never seriously considered the prospect of signing and was set on going to college.
Goldschmidt went on to complete a four-year career at Texas State University and was once again eligible to be drafted in 2009. But Los Angeles passed on him that time around, as the rival Arizona Diamondbacks eventually selected him in the eighth round.
Looking back in hindsight, former Dodgers scouting director and current San Diego Padres director of pro scouting Logan White is disappointed in not choosing Goldschmidt that year, via Ken Gurnick of MLB.com:
“If I have any regrets, it’s missing Goldschmidt coming out of college,” White said. “We dropped the ball. Chris Smith still liked him, had a real good feeling about him because he knew the kid so well and had followed him so long. Looking back, we should have taken him in the seventh round that year.”
The Dodgers opted for Brandon Martinez with the 217th overall pick in the seventh round, paving the way for the Diamondbacks to scoop up Goldschmidt.
Martinez never reached the Majors and hasn’t pitched professionally since 2015. Needless to say, Los Angeles passing on Goldschmidt was ill-advised.
In 127 career games against the Dodgers, Goldschmidt is hitting .305/.380/.559 with 31 doubles, 31 home runs and 98 RBI.