Jonathan Gray is one of the top pitching prospects in the upcoming MLB draft, but a recent failed drug test has Gray’s name in the headlines for something other than his fastball. The 6-foot-4′ right-hander is projected as the second-best prospect of Thursday’s draft, and though controversial, testing positive for Adderall is no big deal.
In fact, because of signability concerns in baseball, Gray’s positive drug test could be exactly what he needs to jump to first overall. Testing positive for Adderall may cost him money as “character concerns” and follow-up drug tests will plague his early years in the league, but it won’t affect his draft stock or his track to the majors.
The truth is that despite testing positive for one of the more widely abused prescription medicines in college, Gray will remain a big name. He’s been drafted twice: first by the Kansas City Royals in in 2010 and again by the New York Yankees in 2011. Beyond the interest he’s already drawn from MLB clubs, his impressive numbers at a big college program atop the University of Oklahoma‘s rotation will make it difficult for teams to pass.
Gray has the second most strikeouts in Division I baseball, and an ERA of 1.59 this season in 119 innings entering the super-regional round of the NCAA playoffs. On a 240-pound frame, even after a positive drug test, there is simply too much potential to pass on.
Just like he would have had he never tested positive for Adderall, Jonathan Gray will likely go in the top five picks of the draft. If he goes on to have a strong career, no one will ever remember any of this sensationalized story.