Draft day memories

Draft day memories

Bobby Crosby smiles at the mere mention of draft day. The memories are still fresh.

Four years ago this week, Crosby found out that the team for whom he'd grown up rooting, the Oakland A's, had made him a first-round pick.

Taken 25th overall out of Long Beach State, Crosby was blown away.

"It was unbelievable," recalled Crosby. "Before the draft you kind of get an idea of when you're going to go as far as what round, and you kind of know who's been following you, but there's no guarantees about where you're going to go.

"To be picked by the A's, it was seriously a dream come true."

That was in 2001. A year later, Nick Swisher was selected by the A's 16th overall in the first round and Joe Blanton was the 24th selection.

"That's a day you're never going to forget," Swisher said. "Every kid who grows up playing baseball dreams of making it to the big leagues, but when you're 10 years old or whatever, you're not even thinking about the draft. You're thinking about playing in the World Series or whatever.

"But as you get older, the draft becomes a bigger and bigger deal, and when I got picked in the first round, it was like, 'Awesome. Here we go. This is the first step on the road to where I want to go.'"

Added Blanton: "It's a pretty special day."

Tuesday was a special day for the 2005 draft class, and Oakland used its first pick -- 21st overall -- on Cliff Pennington, a shortstop out of Texas A&M.

"My advice to anyone being picked in the first round is to enjoy the day," Crosby said. "But when you wake up the next day, you should just forget about being a first-rounder. That's not going to do anything for you out on the field.

"It's like, OK, you're a first-round pick. Great. Congratulations. Now get your [butt] to work."

Mychael Urban is a national writer for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.