Cleveland Indians: Top 5 Cleveland draft classes of the last 25 years

Shane Bieber #57 of the Cleveland Indians (Photo by Emilee Chinn/Getty Images)
Shane Bieber #57 of the Cleveland Indians (Photo by Emilee Chinn/Getty Images) /
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Cleveland Indians, Josh Tomlin
Starting pitcher Josh Tomlin of the Cleveland Indians /

No. 4, 2006 – Chris Archer (5th), Josh Tomlin (19th), Vinnie Pestano (20th)

Yes, you’re reading that correctly. During the 2006 MLB Draft the Cleveland Indians were the team that selected Chris Archer. Taken in the fifth round out of Clayton, N.C., Archer was later dealt by Cleveland to the Chicago Cubs along with two other prospects for Mark DeRosa in 2008. Chicago later sent him to Tampa Bay in 2011 as part of a big deal for Matt Garza.

Luckily, the Tribe still managed to get one big league starter for themselves out of the class in Josh Tomlin. While he might not have been the All-Star that Archer was, Tomlin was one of the more stable pieces in Cleveland’s rotation for nearly a decade.

Pitching in Cleveland for nine seasons, Tomlin tallied a 61-53 record for the Tribe with an ERA of 4.77. He did a little bit of everything for Cleveland, starting at the beginning of his career and later transitioning to the bullpen on a few different occasions.

The same draft also saw Cleveland select Vinnie Pestano. While Pestano’s stay in Cleveland was only five seasons, he was one of the more effective setup men in the game for a season or two. He’s best season came in 2011 when he made 67 appearances on a 2.32 ERA with 84 strikeouts. He was later traded to the Los Angeles Angels for Mike Clevinger in a one-for-one deal.

Had Archer played in Cleveland, this class would be able to slot higher on this list. However, since he was traded it remains fourth. Tomlin provided a lot of strong innings and Pestano was good in his time as well. Plus, Pestano netted Clevinger and by connection, all the players the team received for Clevinger last year as well.