Thanks to the good folks over at Cool Standings, we have another update on how the 2012 MLB draft might look. Here's the top five order right now, with their projected wins listed beside their name:
1) Minnesota Twins - 64.3
2) Baltimore Orioles - 66.6
3) Seattle Mariners - 67.9
4) Houston Astros - 69.7
5) Chicago Cubs - 70.1
The Astros are still a few losses away from getting that first overall pick, and they're going to have to get Minnesota winning some games to catch them. The funny thing is the Twins are actually not in last place in the AL Central. That honor goes to the Chicago White Sox at 13-22, though they're still supposed to win 73 games.
Baltimore has quickly nose-dived from the top of the division early in the season down to the dregs. The Orioles have had a top 5 pick in each of the past four seasons, but haven't selected in the top 2 since 1989. The Twins haven't had the first overall since 2001 when they tabbed Joe Mauer, but they've selected at the top spot twice as an organization, getting Tim Belcher back in 1983.
Seattle has picked in the top 3 nine times in franchise history, including this season when they have the No. 2 overall selection. Baltimore picks at No. 4 and the Cubs are at No. 9.
Part of the reason why Minnesota is ticketed to lose the most games in the majors is that no team has scored as few runs as they have (102) and only the Astros have given up more runs than their 166. If run differential were the deciding factor in who would lose the most games, Houston and Minnesota would be the front-runners for the first two picks in next year's draft.
It also should be noted that just four teams are headed for less than 70 wins this season. Last year, there were seven teams who finished below that mark, so the league may be a bit stronger on the whole.