Archive for the ‘ Draft ’ Category

Mariners 1st Round Draft Pick Zunino in NCAA Super Regionals

Mariners first round draft pick Mike Zunino, a catcher at University of Florida, is participating in the NCAA Baseball Super Regionals this weekend.

Florida plays NC State Saturday, June 9 at 11am PDT and again on Sunday, June 10 at 10am PDT. If you are looking to watch the Mariners draft pick, the games will be available on ESPN3 and ESPNU.

Here’s a link to the ESPN SEC TV listings for the Super Regionals (TV listings).

Zunino, a two-time All-American, is a finalist for the Golden Spikes Award, the Dick Howser Trophy and the Johnny Bench Award as the nation’s top catcher.  He heads into the Super Regionals batting .316 and leads the Gators in doubles (27), home runs (18), RBIs (60) and slugging percentage (.667). The All-SEC first-team catcher ranks No. 2 nationally in doubles (44), No. 5 in home runs and sacrifice flies (9), No. 10 in total bases (154) and No. 13 in slugging percentage (.667).

Sunday’s game (10 am PT) will surely be a game to keep your eye on, as two of the three Golden Spikes finalists will be playing against each other. Zunino will go against NC State left-handed starter Carlos Rodon (9-0, 1.61 ERA).

Mariners first-round draft pick Mike Zunino and the Florida Gators will face NC State in the best of 3 NCAA Super Regionals this weekend. (Tim Casey)

Mariners 2012 First-Year Player Draft Results

**Mariners select 41 players combined in three days of 2012 MLB First-Year Draft **

Mike Zunino in the College World Series on Tuesday, June 28, 2011 at TD Ameritrade Park in Omaha, Neb. / Gator photo by Tim Casey

Seattle Mariners selected 41 players in the 2012 Major League Baseball’s First-Year player draft, highlighted by their first pick, catcher Mike Zunino, who was the 3rd overall pick in the draft.

“Overall, we’re very pleased with the athleticism, talent level and character of the players we drafted,” McNamara said. “Our scouts did an excellent job traveling all over the country finding the top talent at both the high school and college levels. We look forward to getting many of these young men signed and in uniform.”

The Mariners selected 20 pitchers, including 6 left-handers, 3 catchers, 13 infielders (3 1B, 3 2B, 1 3B, 6 SS), and 5 outfielders. Seattle selected 26 college players and 15 high school players.

In all Seattle selected players from 17 states: Alabama, California (7), Connecticut (2), Florida (6), Georgia, Illinois, Kansas, Louisiana, Massachusetts (3), New Jersey, New York (2), Oregon, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Texas (2), Virginia (2), and Washington (5); 2 countries & one U.S. territory: United States, Canada and Puerto Rico.

The Mariners drafted 3 catchers, 13 infielders (3 1B, 3 2B, 1 3B, 6 SS), and 5 outfielders. Seattle selected catcher Mike Zunino from the University of Florida (3rd overall) with their first pick the 2012 draft. Of the 21 position players selected, 6 are left-handed hitters and 1 is a switch-hitter. In the first 19 selections of the draft, Seattle selected 14 position players, including 9 infielders.

Seattle selected 20 pitchers in the draft, including 15 of their final 22 picks. The Mariners selected 14 right-handed pitchers and 6 left-handed pitchers. RHP Edwin Diaz (3rd round) from Caguas Military Academy in Puerto Rico was the first high school pitcher selected by the Mariners, while right-handed pitcher Grady Wood (10th round) from Western Oregon State was the first college pitcher drafted by Seattle. In all, 13 of the 20 pitchers selected by Seattle were college pitchers.

With the 30th-round selection the Mariners drafted outfielder Mike Yastrzemski out of Vanderbilt University. Yastrzemski, who is from Andover, MA, is the grandson of Boston Red Sox Hall of Famer, Carl Yastrzemski. He hit .286 (67×234) with 46 runs scored, 11 doubles, 6 home runs and 41 RBI in 63 games during his junior season for the Commodores. He was originally selected in the 36th round of the 2009 MLB Draft by the Boston Red Sox.

“Mike is a player we have seen since high school and has improved each year,” McNamara said. “Obviously he had good bloodlines and showed us this year that he deserved to be drafted. He is not Carl Yastrzemski’s grandson he is Mike Yastrzemski.”

The Mariners selected five players with ties to Washington State in the 2012 June draft: INF Taylor Ard from Washington State University, RHP Levi Dean from Tennessee Wesleyan College, RHP Aaron Brooks from Edmonds Community College, LHP Rusty Shellhorn from Texas Tech University and C Alex Ross from Bellevue Community College. Ard was the Mariners 7th-round selection out of the Washington State University. The native of Vancouver, WA, was named to the 2012 All-Pac-12 Conference Baseball team after batting .332 (73×22) with 41 runs scored, 16 doubles, 1 triple, 12 home runs and 50 RBI in junior season. Ard is the first WSU player selected by the Mariners since Aaron Trolia in the 22nd round of the 2004 June draft. He also attended Mt. Hood Community College from 2009-10. Dean, who graduated from W.F. West High School in Centralia, WA in 2008, went 5-4 with 1 save and a 4.83 ERA in 18 games with during his senior season at Tennessee Wesleyan College. He also played two seasons at Lower Columbia College and his junior season at the University of Tennessee. Brooks is 7-3 with a 2.71 ERA (23 ER, 67.1 IP) and 60 strikeouts in 12 games (11 starts) during his sophomore season at Edmonds Community College. After graduating from Mount Lake Terrace High School in 2010, he played one season at Gonzaga (2011) before transferring to Edmonds Community College this season. Shellhorn graduated from Central Valley High School (Spokane, WA) in 2008. He attended Washington State University in 2009-10, before transferring to Texas Tech and sitting out a season in 2011. Shellhorn is 5-3 with a 4.98 ERA (31 ER, 56.0 IP) in 16 games (9 starts) for the Red Raiders in 2012. In his second season with the Bulldogs, Ross hit .250 (24×96) with 14 runs scored, 4 doubles and 7 RBI in 28 games. Ross graduated from Lake Washington High School in 2009.

“There was a lot of talent from the Northwest this year, McNamara said. “All of these players can play. We saw a lot of players with ability and look forward to seeing them play for their home town team in the future.”

The Mariners selected 15 players (rounds 2-15) on Tuesday afternoon. Seattle’s only pick in the draft on Monday was catcher Mike Zunino (3rd overall). Named a first-team Louisville Slugger All-American on Thursday by Collegiate Baseball, Zunino is a semifinalist for the Johnny Bench Award, the Dick Howser Trophy and the Golden Spikes Award. He was also the 2011 SEC Player of the Year and a 2012 first-team All-SEC selection.

Catcher Mike Zunino / Gator Country photo by Tim Casey

“Mike is a sturdy, blue-collar, talented defensive receiver with extra-base offensive potential,” McNamara said. “He is a winning player, and will be a good fit with the Mariners. We look forward to having him in our organization and working his way towards being part of our Major League club in the future.”

A two-time first-team All-SEC recipient and two-time member of the league’s All-Defensive Team, he has registered a .993 fielding percentage, with three errors in 452 chances, and has thrown out almost a third of the runners who have attempted to steal on him (45 of 144). Zunino, 21, led the University of Florida in nearly every offensive category. After a 3-game sweep in the NCAA Gainesville Regional over the weekend, he is batting .316 (73×231) with 27 doubles, 18 home runs and 60 RBI in 62 games. He has started 58 of his team’s 63 games at catcher, and recorded an additional 4 starts as the designated hitter. He was named to the Gainesville Regional All-Tournament Team, and has hit seven career post-season home runs.

“We’ve watched him for three years,” McNamara said. “He’s steady. He doesn’t jump out and wow you like some other players. But what you get at the end of the day is a steady, hard-nosed, tough kid who’s got power and can really catch.”

Here is a look at the Mariners 41 selections in the 2012 draft:

RD PLAYER POS B-T HT WT AGE SCHOOL
1 Mike Zunino C R-R 6-1 220 21  University of Florida
2 Joe DeCarlo SS R-R 5-10 205 18 Garnet Valley HS
3 Edwin Diaz RHP R-R 6-2 160 18 Caguas Military Acad. 
3A Tyler Pike LHP L-L 6-0 180 18 Winter Haven HS
4 Patrick Kivlehan 3B R-R 6-2 211 22 Rutgers
5 Chris Taylor SS R-R 6-0 170 22 University of Virginia
6 Timmy Lopes SS R-R 5-11 180 17 Edison HS
7 Taylor Ard 1B R-R 6-1 235 22 Washington State Univ.
8 N. Halamandaris 1B L-L 6-2 220 18 R.L. Stevenson HS
9 J. McGruder 2B L-R 5-8 175 20 Texas Tech University
10 Grady Wood RHP R-R 6-1 195 22 Western Oregon State
11 Kristian Brito 1B R-R 6-5 240 17 Ramon Q. Medina
12 Michael Faulkner CF L-L 5-9 165 20 Arkansas State Univ.
13 Jonathan Hauser RHP R-R 6-2 180 21 Virginia Commonwealth
14 Brock Hebert 2B R-R 5-9 170 21 Southeastern Louisiana
15 Dario Pizzano RF L-R 5-9 200 21 Columbia University
16 Dominic Leone RHP R-R 5-11 195 20 Clemson University
17 Isaiah Yates RF R-L 5-9 185 17 Clovis East High School
18 Jabari Henry RF R-R 6-1 200 21 Florida International U.
19 Nate Koneski LHP R-L 6-0 185 22 College of Holy Cross
20 Steven Ewing LHP L-L 6-1 219 20 University of Miami
21 Scott DeCecco LHP R-L 6-0 180 21 Univ. of South Carolina
22 Gabrial Franca SS R-R 5-11 160 18 John W. North HS
23 Levi Dean RHP R-R 6-4 225 22 Tennessee Wesleyan C.
24 Matt Vedo RHP R-R 6-3 205 22 UC Santa Barbara
25 Mark Bordonaro RHP L-R 6-0 170 21 Fairfield University
26 Aaron Brooks RHP R-R 6-6 210 20 Edmonds CC
27 Blake Holovach LHP L-L 6-5 195 21 University of Missouri
28 Matt Brazis RHP R-R 6-3 200 22 Boston College
29 Toby Demello C R-R 6-1 241 22 St. Mary’s College of CA
30 Mike Yastrzemski RF L-L 6-0 180 21 Vanderbilt University
31 Rusty Shellhorn LHP L-L 5-10 185 22 Texas Tech University
32 Richard Palase 2B R-R 5-11 195 21 Lynchburg College
33 Logan Seifrit RHP R-R 5-11 185 17 Vauxhall High School
34 Alex Ross C L-R 6-1 190 21 Bellevue CC
35 Tyler Krieger SS S-R 6-1 165 18 Northview High School
36 A. Wingenter RHP R-R 6-7 190 18 Bob Jones High School
37 Brett Lilek RHP R-R 6-4 185 18 Marian Catholic HS
38 Richard Martin SS R-R 5-10 174 17 Bloomingdale Sr. HS
39 Grayson Long RHP R-R 6-5 200 18 Barbers Hill High School
40 James Kaprielian RHP R-R 6-3 190 18 Beckman High School

Draft Update – Day 2

Ways to Follow the MLB Draft:

Although not as exciting as the first round, MLB’s First Year Player Draft continues today and tomorrow.

We’ll have an update later this afternoon with all of the Mariners picks. So far, the Mariners have selected Joe DeCarlo, a shortstop from Garnet Valley High School in Glen Mills, PA; Edwin Diaz, a RHP from Caguas Military Academy in Puerto Rico; Tyler Pike, LHP from Winter Haven High School in Winter Haven, FL; Patrick Kivlehan, third baseman from Rutgers; and Chris Taylor, another shortstop from University of Virginia.

We also learned today that the Mariners #1 pick yesterday, Florida catcher Mike Zunino, was named one of three finalists for the Golden Spikes Award that honors the nation’s top amateur baseball player. The other two finalists are RHP Mark Appel (No. 8 overall, Pittsburgh Pirates), and Carlos Rodon, a freshman left-handed pitcher out of North Carolina State.

Mike Zunino has been named a finalist for the Golden Spikes Award.

Inside the Mariners Draft Central

Ways to Follow the MLB Draft:

With former Mariners outfielder Mike Cameron and Northeast Area Scout Brian Nichols representing the Mariners from MLB Network’s Studio 42 in Secaucus, New Jersey, the rest of Mariners Baseball Operations and Scouting departments are hunkered down in Seattle going over scouting reports and finalizing the Mariners first round selection in the 2012 June Draft. Executive Vice President & General Manager of Baseball Operations Jack Zduriencik and Director of Amateur Scouting Tom McNamara and their staffs have spent the last six months traveling all over the country watching hundreds of games and individual players to determine the next 41 players that will be part of the Mariners organization.

The Ellis Pavilion at Safeco Field is transformed every year into the Mariners “war room” two weeks before the draft begins. It’s the place where the future takes center stage. Over 30 members of the Baseball Operations and Scouting departments fill the room. With only a break for lunch, McNamara and his staff have been pouring over scouting reports and finalizing the draft order for hundreds of players.

All is quiet in the Mariners Draft Headquarters this morning, but it will be the center of attention when the Mariners select 3rd overall this afternoon.

The draft boards are posted around the room with approximately 500 names that are broken down into regions, positions and ability levels. There is a list for right-handed and left-handed pitchers, catchers, first basemen, second basemen, third basemen, shortstops, left fielders, center fielders and right fielders. Below each position player is the ranking Outstanding, Above Average, Average, and Below Average. Each name is code-colored. Players are also categorized as high school, college, junior college or a fifth-year college player.

The selection order of the First-Year Player Draft was determined by the reverse order of finish at the close of the previous championship season. For the 2012 First-Year Player Draft, compensation picks have been assigned to Clubs whose Type A or Type B free agents signed with other Clubs and/or to Clubs that did not sign a player who was chosen in the first three rounds of the 2011 First-Year Player Draft. Per the new Basic Agreement, the Draft will have 40 rounds, instead of 50.  A Club may pass on its selection in any round and not forfeit its right to participate in other rounds.

As the start of the 2012 First-Year Player Draft approaches, the Mariners staff settles in for the fast-paced draft that will consume the next three days. The Mariners have only one pick, the 3rd overall selection, on day one of the draft which consists of the first round and first round supplemental portion of the draft (first 60 picks). All 30 Major League teams are connected by conference call and once all teams are dialed in Commissioner Bud Selig begins the draft.

It may look calm and quiet now, but soon phones will be ringing, folks will be congratulating each other and handshakes will be distributed throughout for a job well done this season.

After the Mariners make their selection today, both Zduriencik and McNamara start making the rounds of media interviews. Their evenings are planned with radio interviews with both local and national shows, as well as meeting with the local beat writers and one-one interviews with local televisions stations. The Mariners media’s “war room” is located in the Main Interview Room at Safeco Field. The interview room as been transformed in to a media workroom with tables set up for writers to blog, Tweet and write their draft day stories. By the end of the day we will know everything and more about the Mariners first round selection.

Members of the Mariners Baseball Operations and Amateur Scouting Departments have been hard at work preparing for the MLB Draft that starts today.

Once the first 60 picks are made on Monday the Mariners staff will continue work through the night to determine their plan of action with updated draft boards and player availability for the next two days. The Draft will resume at 9:00 a.m. (PDT) on both Tuesday, June 5th and Wednesday, June 6th via conference call from MLB headquarters in New York City. Tuesday, June 5th will cover rounds two through 15, and Wednesday, June 6th will cover rounds 16 through 40. The intervals between selections will last five minutes during the first round and one minute during the compensation round. Rounds two through 10 will have one minute between selections, and the remainder of the selections will be made without delays.

By the end of the 3-day, 40-round draft, many names familiar only in their own households will begin to become familiar names in the Mariners family.

- KM

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