The MLB Draft took place this week, and once again, Oregon is potentially impacted by the whims of the Colorado Rockies. Two years ago, prize pitching recruit Tyler Matzek was drafted by the Rockes, and ultimately elected to sign. Last year, junior pitcher Tyler Anderson was also picked in the first round by Colorado and left Eugene a year early. This year, Colorado selected Aaron Jones, who will have his own decision whether to stay in Eugene or try his luck in the Rockies system. Jones is one of three Duck players and four recruits to be selected in the draft this year:
Aaron Jones :: C/OF :: Sophomore :: Colorado Rockies :: Round 18 (Pick 558)
Jones is a rare draft-eligible sophomore because he is aready 21 years of age. Jones' decision has major implications for the Ducks next season, as he is possibly Oregon's most legitimate offensive threat.
Joey Housey :: RP :: Senior :: Cincinnati Reds :: Round 27 (Pick 832)
Alex Keudell :: SP :: Senior :: Tampa Bay Rays :: Round 27 (Pick 842)
These guys being seniors, we knew they would be gone, so I'm extremely happy that they were drafted. Being picked this late doesn't exactly make you a prospect, but they'll get a chance. Keudell came to Oregon a walk-on, and left as Pac-12 pitcher of the year. Here's hoping he defies the odds once again.
Carson Kelly :: SS :: Westview HS (Beaverton) :: St. Louis Cardinals :: Round 2 (Pick 86)
Kelly is one of the most highly regarded guys in Oregon's recruiting class, and says "its a tough decision between Oregon and St. Louis." Kelly says that he has until July 13 to choose between Oregon and St. Louis. The slot money for the 86th pick is $574,300, so Kelly would be turning down a nice chunk of change to attend Oregon. However, its also important to remember that most NCAA baseball players are only on 1/3 or 1/2 scholarships, unlike their football and basketball counterparts. Kelly also has the fact that he is a legitimate big league prospect, and that full seasons of professional training and investment are likely to be more beneficial to him than truncated college seasons. If I were a betting man, I'd bet on Kelly soon being part of the Cardinals orgainzation, but one can always hope. If he thinks he can increase his draft stock with a successful college career, he could go. But in baseball, once you choose to go to college, you have to go for three years.
Adrian Sampson :: SP :: Bellevue Community College :: Pittsburgh Pirates :: Round 5 (Pick 166)
Andrew Pullin :: OF :: Centralia HS (Centralia, WA) :: Philadelphia Phillies :: Round 5 (Pick 188)
Cole Irvin :: P :: Servite HS (Yorba Linda, CA) :: Toronto Blue Jays :: Round 29 (Pick 895)
These players are more interesting questions. Sampson and Pullin went in round 5, where the money isn't nearly as great as what Kelly is contemplating. Still, a partial scholarship is only worth so much, and round 5 is still fairly high. These guys could go either way. Irvin, a lefty, is one of the top HS pitching prospects in the nation, but the fact that he was taken so low seems to portend that most think he'll go ahead and go the college route.