Tom Allison (2007-2010)
Living WAR Doc - Updated regularly, so numbers may not match (last configured May 31, 2023)
Tom Allison signed 131 players during his time as Scouting Director (Four Drafts). Of those 131 men, 32 reached The Show. That’s a 24.4% success rate. Of Allison’s drafts, only 2007 has zero players left to accrue WAR. Eight players remain available to change their WAR. Some of them are rather large names though. You may remember guys like Paul Goldschmidt, AJ Pollock and Wade Miley. There are also zero men drafted by Allison who are still playing but waiting for their MLB debut.
Hall of Fame Draftees
Technically, there aren’t any Hall of Fame Inductees drafted by Tom Allison. Yet. There’s a certain First Baseman who will make that fact questionable when all is said and done.
Possible: Paul Goldschmidt (Drafted 2009, MLB 2011-present): 56.1 fWAR, 60.4 bWAR, 58.3 aWAR
Generalities found in draft history based on WAR
As everything stands right now in 2023, Tom Allison has one big boast about his time as Director of Scouting for the Arizona Diamondbacks: he oversaw the best draft in franchise history (by WAR). It was 2009 and the aWAR so far is 89.0. That year, the following names signed on to become Arizona Diamondbacks (in draft order): AJ Pollock, Chris Owings, Keon Broxton, Paul Goldschmidt, and Chase Anderson. Man what a list!
Even his other years have names you’ll recognize: Josh Collmenter & Barry Enright (2007), Wade Miley (2008) and Adam Eaton (2010). Unfortunately the rest of the names he signed leave little to enjoy... Bolsinger, Borchering, Cowgill, Parker just to name the bigger ones.
The weird standout of Allison’s years is 2010. Thankfully Adam Eaton was taken in the 19th Round, because without him, this draft would be negative WAR by all metrics... In the first 10 Rounds, Allison signed 10 players, spending just over $3million to do so. Exactly 1 player made the Majors - Zach Walters and he was the 9th Round selection who retired with -.4 aWAR!
Were these successful drafts
Overall, Allison’s drafts look pretty ok on the surface. His guys have accumulated respectable WAR totals, and he has the highest rate of draftees making it to the Big Leagues in Arizona history. Dive a little deeper and you have a pretty good mix of small contributors and main contributors.
Sure anyone who got the opportunity to take Pollock, Goldy, Anderson and Owings in the same year is going to have some success. But 2009 was also Mike Trout’s draft year. Allison’s group passed on him. Twice. In a row. To instead roll the dice on Bobby Borchering and AJ Pollock.
Allison’s strength was his ability to find value in later rounds. Goldy was a 8th Round pick. Eaton a 19th. Anderson a 9th and Collmenter a 15th! Unfortunately he struggled a bit earlier on.
Best First Selection Performer: Jarrod Parker (2007 1st Round 9th Overall 5.9 aWAR)
Best First 10 Round Performer: Paul Goldschmidt (2009 8th Round 246th Overall 58.3 aWAR)
Best “Sleeper” (Round 11 or later) Performer: Adam Eaton (2010 19th Round 571st Overall 18.9 aWAR)
Was Tom Allison a successful Scouting Director?
Is Arizona a better a team because of Allison’s influence
Without the 2009 draft, I think this is an easy “meh.” But because of his wonderful 2009 draft, Allison’s case is far more compelling. Can you really say Arizona isn’t better off for having reaped the benefits of Paul Goldschmidt, Chase Anderson, AJ Pollock and Chris Owings? Wade Miley?
Say what you will about each of those men, their Arizona Careers, and what has happened since leaving the Diamondbacks, but they all played pivotal roles for the club at points, in some cases the trade to send them away played a bigger role (Anderson+ for Jean Segura), and in one case, comments made after leaving can still unite the fanbase for a brief period of time (albeit in hatred as opposed to happiness).
The team received nearly as much aWAR from only four Allison drafts as they did seven Rizzo drafts.
Tom Allison’s AZ Stats:
Total AZ aWAR - 74.0
Percentage of Total aWAR in AZ - 51.71%
Average AZ (draft) aWAR - 18.5
Median AZ (draft) aWAR - 6.0
Is Arizona better off for Tom Allison’s tenure?