Mizzou Baseball Ready for 2014 Major League Draft

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MUTIGERS.COM

June 5, 2014

COLUMBIA, Mo. - In only a few hours, day one of the 2014 First-Year Player Draft will be held by Major League Baseball in Secaucus, New Jersey. The Draft will begin live on MLB Network and MLB.com at 6 p.m (CT).

Mizzou has two current players, junior righties Brett Graves (80) and Keaton Steele (117), that rank in the MLB.com 2014 top 200 Prospect List. Mizzou will also have its eye on incoming players Bryce Montes De Oca (73), Shane Benes (116) and Tanner Houck (132), all projected as high picks.

Graves and Steele will lead the current Tiger players in the 2014 draft. Graves, a hopeful first-round pick, tops out at 97 mph with the fastball and shows the ability to get swings and misses up in the strike zone. He was drafted out of high school by the Crdinals in the 26th round. Steele, another powerful pitcher, touches 96 with the fastball and flashes a plus slider around 84-85. Steele was drafted by the Rays as a 29th-rounder in 2012 and the Royals as a 40th-rounder last year.

Seniors Dylan Kelly and Eric Anderson both had seasons to remember and hope to hear their names called in the late rounds. Kelly hit .330 this past season and Anderson posting a 3.30 era while thriving in the leadoff spot as his two-way ability has turned the heads of scouts. Kendal Keeton, Logan Pearson and John Miles will also keep their ears open during the last several rounds of the draft.

Over the last several years, Mizzou has shown MLB draft success that not everybody can say they have. First-round, 11th overall pick in 2006 and 2013 Cy Young winner Max Scherzer has proved himself has one of the top pitchers in the league. Others like All-Star Aaron Crow, drafted ninth overall in 2008, Kyle Gibson (22nd overall, 2009) and Ian Kinzler (17th-round, 2003) have made a big impact in the bigs. Mizzou's most recent draftee, Rob Zastryzny, went early in the second round of the 2013 draft to the Chicago Cubs.

 

 

Going into this year's draft, Mizzou Head Coach Tim Jamieson has seen 68 of his players selected in the MLB Draft. In 2009 seven Tigers had their names called on draft day.

Mizzou committed Bryce Montes De Oca (Lawrence, KS) tops the list for incomers. The 6'7" 265 pound RHP tops out at 97 mph with the fastball after recovering from Tommy John surgery last spring. Bryce ranks #32 in ESPN's top 100 prospects.

Mizzou Draft Notes
• The highest draft pick in program history came in 2008 when pitcher Aaron Crow went ninth overall to the Washington Nationals.
• The most Mizzou players to ever go in a draft was seven in 2009.
• The last first round pick came in 2009 when Aaron Crow went 12th and Kyle Gibson went 22nd overall.
Tim Jamieson has produced 68 draft picks since being at Mizzou.

Major League Baseball Top 200 Prospect Watch
73 // Bryce Montes De Oca (incoming freshman)
80 // Brett Graves
116 // Shane Benes (incoming freshman)
132 // Tanner Houck (incoming freshman)
177 // Keaton Steele

ESPN Top 100 Prospects
32 // Bryce Montes De Oca
59 // Brett Graves

Baseball America Top 500 Prospects
61 // Brett Graves
72 // Bryce Montes De Oca
275 // Keaton Steele
400 // Shane Benes

For all the latest on Mizzou baseball, stay tuned to MUTigers.com and follow the team on twitter @MizzouBaseball.

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