For the first time in MLB Draft history, the same program has produced the top two draft picks.
Paul Skenes, the top prospect by MLB.com, was taken first overall by the Pittsburgh Pirates. He is just the second LSU player to be selected first overall in history, joining Ben McDonald. Dylan Crews, the Golden Spikes Award winner and #2 prospect, was selected second by the Washington Nationals.
Skenes compiled an incredible season in his lone year at LSU, going 13-2 on the season with a 1.69 ERA with just 20 walks and an SEC-record 209 strikeouts. He was named the National Player of the Year by D1Baseball, SEC Pitcher of the Year, and the winner of the Dick Howser Trophy.
His two outings in Omaha, which were wins over Tennessee and Wake Forest, were very impressive. In the opening game against the Volunteers, Skenes pitched 7.2 innings with just two runs and 12 strikeouts in the performance. Four days later, he pitched in the greatest pitching matchup of the season against Rhett Lowder and the Demon Deacons, where he pitched eight innings with no runs, two hits, and nine punchouts.
Crews, who could’ve been a top pick out of high school, put up historic numbers in the Purple and Gold, becoming the first player to win SEC Player of the Year in back-to-back seasons and just the second LSU player to win the Golden Spikes Award. He finished the season hitting .426 with 110 hits (2nd in the nation), 100 runs (best in the nation), 71 walks (1st), and an on-base percentage of .567 (2nd).
The SEC Male Athlete of the Year reached base safely in each of the 71 games played in 2023, extending his streak to 75 games. While in Omaha, he hit .375 with a double, triple, homer, three RBIs, and 11 runs scored.
Skenes and Crews have both been near or at the top of ever draft board during the season and now, the Pittsburgh Pirates and Washington Nationals have both found their newest superstars.