David Starn was taken by the Atlanta Braves, a team known for grooming pitchers. (Brendan Maloney-US PRESSWIRE)
Nobody went in the first round of the MLB Draft on Monday night, unlike last year when Kent State's Andrew Chafin was taken in the supplemental first round. And as Rob Neyer wrote yesterday, just because a person is a high pick makes no guarantee of a star or even a major league player. Pro sports drafts are already somewhat of an exercise in crapshooting but when a draft goes 40 picks deep per team it becomes tenfold.
So there's hope for everyone! The second round went through Round 15 on Tuesday and as the conference call ended, five MAC players were taken:
Round 3, 105th overall: Buffalo C Tom Murphy to the Colorado Rockies
Not a huge surprise as the first MAC player drafted. Buffalo's in no way a baseball hotbed. The last player drafted from UB was Zach Anderson in 2009, then was released in 2010. So no other Bull alum is in the minor league system at this moment, and the last Buffalo player to make the big leagues was Expos/Red Sox pitcher Tom Hesketh, who last played in 1994.
As for Murphy, he was touted one of the best defensive catchers in the draft. He was MAC Player of the Year in 2011 and tabbed as a first-teamer again this year as a junior. In a collegiate all-star game in Fenway Park, Murphy cracked a homer over the Green Monster off LSU pitcher Kevin Gausman, who was drafted fourth overall this year.
Round 6, 199th overall: OHIO RHP Seth Streich to the Oakland A's
When you think A's you think of unconventional scouting, and this has to fit right in there. Of the five players taken in the second round Streich gathered no regular season honors this year. And that makes sense when you look at this numbers: a 4.42 ERA and among the three regular starters, he threw the fewest innings (75 1/3) and the most wild pitches (11) and hit batsman (18). I know you don't draft on college stats, so the A's must see something deeper in him to even draft him this high.
Round 7, 239th overall: Kent State LHP David Starn to the Atlanta Braves
Yeah, you sort of have to draft the MAC Pitcher of the Year eventually. What's made Kent State's run to the Super Regionals so astounding is Starn struggled more than anyone else on the staff and they still won: six innings, four runs in that start against Kentucky (the 21-inning one). His season numbers are much better: a 2.01 ERA in 16 starts, striking out 118 in 107 2/3 innings and allowing only three home runs. He wasn't a premium prospect because he doesn't throw much faster than 90 but the control and ability to pitch is there. And maybe it's an outdated trait but the Braves are tremendous at developing pitchers. Great opportunity for him.
Round 15, 484th overall: Central Michigan SS Jordan Dean to the Detroit Tigers
He went second team All-MAC as a shortstop, probably due to that .349 average. If he's going to make it, it's likely going to be at second base. Wonder if he can play second base for Detroit tonight. But he is a junior so it's not even a sure thing he'll sign.
Round 15, 488th overall: Central Michigan RHP Zach Cooper to the Philadelphia Phillies
He was first team All-MAC as a starting pitcher and the senior had a nice 2.82 ERA with two shutouts. He was taken 46th overall by the Marlins last year, so hey, things are looking better!
The MLB Draft will continue today, starting at noon and finishing the final 25 rounds. No doubt some more MACness will be seen.