Rockies add depth on Day 2 of draft
Three pitchers, three outfielders and two infielders were claimed by the Colorado Rockies on Friday during the second day of the Major League Baseball first-year player draft.
Once the draft ends and players have signed, they will be assigned to a minor league club. The Grand Junction Rockies open Rookie camp on June 14, with the season opener at home June 20. Players are scheduled to start arriving on Wednesday.
Selecting third in each round, the Rockies started out the day with Memphis left-handed pitcher Sam Moll in the third round, then followed that up with Jordan Patterson, an outfielder from the University of South Alabama.
Right-hander Blake Shouse, from Middle Georgia College, became the fourth pitcher taken by Colorado, going in the fifth round. A high school prospect, Dom Nunez of Elk Grove, Calif., was selected in the sixth round.
Konner Wade, a right-handed pitcher from the University of Arizona, went in the seventh round, Terry McClure, a high school outfielder from Riverwood (Ga.) International Charter School, was taken in the eighth round, Patrick Valaika, a shortstop at UCLA, in the ninth, and Mike Tauchman, an outfielder from Bradley University, in the 10th round.
Only two players from last week’s Alpine Bank Junior College World Series were drafted on Friday.
Palm Beach (Fla.) State College pitcher J.D. Underwood was drafted by the Los Angeles Dodgers in the fifth round, the 154th overall pick. Underwood went 10-2 during the regular season with a 1.55 ERA.
In Grand Junction, he went 1-0 in two starts, with one complete game, leading the Panthers into the title game. He struck out 15 batters in the tournament and made the all-tournament team as a designated hitter (.208, seven RBI).
Nick Gardewine of Kaskaskia (Ill.) College was taken by Texas in the seventh round, the 220th overall pick. Gardewine, a right-handed pitcher, went 9-0 with a 1.67 ERA in the regular season, but lost a 12-2 decision in the Blue Devils’ game against Midland (Texas) College. He allowed five runs on nine hits in four innings, leaving with a tournament ERA of 11.25.
A closer look at the Rockies’ Day 2 selections
■ Sam Moll: The 5-foot-10, 185-pound junior lefty went 17-9 in his career with Memphis with a 2.86 career ERA. He was a first-team All-Conference USA selection, holding opponents to a .196 batting average this season, going 9-3 with a 2.30 ERA. He struck out 106 batters this season.
■ Jordan Patterson: A junior, Patterson led the Jaguars in hitting at .352 with 49 RBI and scored 69 runs, hitting 25 doubles. He was drafted as an outfielder, but played first base in college. He was the Sun Belt Conference player of the year and the team captain, and even at 6-5, 205 pounds, has good speed.
■ Blake Shouse: The junior college player led the Knights (Middle Georgia changed its mascot from Warriors this year) to the East Central District tournament, but the club was disqualified because of an eligibility concern. Shouse started at third base, then came on as the club’s closer. He hit .309 with 29 RBI and went 2-0 with 12 saves and a 1.07 ERA in the relief role. He’s committed to Georgia, where he would likely continue to play both positions. In the pros, he’s projected as a relief pitcher, throwing in the mid-90s.
■ Dom Nunez: Listed as a third baseman, Nunez caught for his high school team this spring, and was a shortstop on the USA National Team the past two years, winning gold medals each year. Scouting reports have him hitting with gap power, but not likely to ever be a power hitter. He has good instincts.
■ Konner Wade: The 6-3, 190-pound junior was a preseason Louisville Slugger All-American for the Wildcats and made the 2012 College World Series all-tournament team. He didn’t have the success this past season he did in 2012, going 5-6 with a 4.30 ERA, but he struck out 64 batters and walked only 24 in 104 2/3 innings.
■ Terry McClure: The 6-2, 190-pound high school outfielder has committed to Georgia Tech, and scouting reports say he has good speed on the bases and in the outfield. He has the potential to hit with average power, and although young, he’s shown the tools to become an everyday outfielder.
■ Pat Valaika: The Bruins’ shortstop is hitting .260 with 42 RBI and made only five errors in 241 chances this season going into the super regionals against Cal State-Fullerton. He hit .258 in the Cape Cod League last summer. The 5-11, 205-pound junior has two older brothers playing pro baseball, Chris (Cincinnati) and Matt (St. Louis).
■ Mike Tauchman: The left-handed outfielder (6-2, 215) is a second-team Louisville Slugger All-American, the Missouri Valley player of the year and has been on the honor roll seven semesters. He graduated with a degree in business management and administration. On the field he hit .425 this season with 41 RBI and 16 doubles. He graduated with a .341 career batting average. He’s not a power hitter (eight career HRs), but he gets on base, with 108 career walks and a .438 on-base percentage.