Arizona baseball shines at MLB Draft
Arizona baseball saw its legacy shine this week as six standout players were drafted in the first 10 rounds of the 2018 MLB Draft and eight were drafted overall.
Junior first baseman Alfonso Rivas was picked up by the Oakland Athletics as the 113th overall pick in the fourth round.
This past season, Rivas hit seven homers, 15 doubles, three triples and 52 RBI, and helped the Wildcats defeat some standout teams this year, such as Arizona State, Southern California and UCLA.
Following Rivas was his former teammate Cody Deason, who was picked up the Houston Astros in the fifth round with the 162nd overall pick.
Deason, a right-handed pitcher, posted a 2.87 ERA in 91 innings and helped the Wildcats win some crucial games down the stretch this season. Deason still has one year of eligibility left at Arizona, so the option to return to Tucson remains.
Right-handed pitcher Michael Flynn was selected in the sixth round with the 174th overall pick by the Pittsburgh Pirates.
Flynn was Arizona’s No. 2 starter during his past season as a junior. He posted a 4.89 ERA in 73.2 innings. Like Deason, Flynn has one year of eligibility left to play for the Wildcats.
Joining Cody Deason and current Astro and former Wildcat JJ Matijevic will be catcher Cesar Salazar who was the 222nd overall pick. This past season, Salazar hit four homers, 11 doubles, and 42 RBI to help the ‘Cats end with a 34-22 overall record.
In the eighth overall round, for the 230nd pick, Tylor Megill was picked up the New York Mets.
Cal Stevenson will be headed north of the border to Toronto after being picked up by the Blue Jays in the 10th round.
In his last season, senior Stevenson hit one homer, six triples, three doubles, and 26 RBI, even after suffering a hand injury mid-season.
Other selections included infielder Travis Moniot and catcher/outfielder Ryan Haug. Moniot was a 17th round, 498th overall pick by the White Sox and Haug was a 27th round, 804th overall pick by the Pirates.
Arizona tops the list of the schools with the most number of draft picks in the first ten rounds this year alongside Kentucky and Oregon State.
Follow Amit Syal on Twitter @ASyal21