Wake Forest juniors Patrick Frick and Morgan McSweeney didn’t have to wait too long to be picked during the marathon day of baseball’s amateur draft.
Frick was the 14th-round pick of the Mariners, while McSweeney was grabbed with the first pick of the 17th round by the Orioles. Both are expected to sign and forego their senior seasons at Wake Forest. Frick excelled this season and hit .360, while McSweeney endured a rocky season with a 7.64 ERA.
Two more Deacons were taken in the last 10 rounds, and their fates aren’t clear.
Outfielder Chris Lanzilli was picked by the Giants in the 39th round. The draft-eligible sophomore batted .347 with a team-best 16 home runs and 67 RBIs last season, but it seems his request for a signing bonus priced him out of consideration in the early rounds. The Giants have the 14th-highest bonus pool, and teams have until mid-July to sign picks.
Reliever Carter Bach, a lefty who struck out 21 batters but walked 15 in 15⅓ innings this season, was picked in the 34th round by the Rays.
One of Wake Forest’s incoming freshmen was selected, Blake Loubier of Winter Springs, Fla. Loubier, a 6-foot-6, 190-pound right-handed pitcher, was picked with the final pick of the 13th round by the Boston Red Sox — which makes sense, given what Coach Tom Walter said of him last week.
“Loubier is going up to Fenway for a tryout, for a pre-draft thing on Thursday,” Walter said.
Teams have until July 15 to sign draft picks, and it seems to be a toss-up whether Loubier will sign with the Red Sox or begin his Deacons career. Walter said Loubier submitted an aggressive amount for what his signing bonus would be, and Boston has the least bonus pool money ($4,788,100) of any team.
Because Loubier was picked after the 10th round, any bonus money above $125,000 would count against Boston’s allotment.
Of local interest were Noah Soles of Ledford High School, drafted by the Diamondbacks in the 19th round, and E.P. Reese of Winston-Salem State, drafted by the Astros in the 25th round. Both of them are outfielders. North Carolina Central shortstop Corey Joyce, a North Davidson graduate, was the 12th-round pick of the Tigers.
The first pick of the third day with North Carolina ties was outfielder Nick Neal of Randleman High School, the 11th-round pick of the Blue Jays.
For the majority of the day, the only other North Carolina high school player to be drafted was Tyler Driver, a right-handed pitcher who attended Crossroads Flex High School in Cary (the 18th-round pick of the Mariners).
The 36th round was a big one for North Carolina prep players, though. Isaiah Bennett of Pine Forest was picked by the Padres, Kyle Smith of New Hanover was picked by the Diamondbacks and C.J. Mayhue of Shelby Crest was picked by the Mariners.
North Carolina had another six players picked, bringing its total to nine. They were: shortstop Ike Freeman (14th round to the Indians), catcher Brandon Martorano (16th to the Giants), second baseman Ashton McGee (18th to the Brewers), right-handed pitcher Hansen Butler (25th to the White Sox), sophomore pitcher Joey Lancellotti (34th to the Yankees) and junior Gianluca Dalatri (40th to the Tigers). The Tar Heels play host to Auburn this weekend in a super regional that begins Saturday.
East Carolina also had four players picked Wednesday and had seven total draft picks. Pitchers Trey Benton (15th round to the Indians) and Evan Voliva (18th to the Yankees) were snagged, as were shortstop Turner Brown (19th to the Rockies) and catcher Jake Washer (29th to the Cubs). East Carolina’s super regional series at Louisville begins Friday.
Duke players picked were outfielder Kennie Taylor (14th round by the Mets), right-hander Adam Laskey (19th by the Cubs) and righty Bryce Jarvis (37th by the Yankees). Jarvis is a draft-eligible sophomore and the son of former Wake Forest pitcher Kevin Jarvis. The Blue Devils start their super regional series at Vanderbilt on Friday night.
N.C. State had another bundle of players selected, too, including four right-handed pitchers. Those pitchers were: Jason Parker to the Reds in the 16th round, Alec Barger in the 17th to the Braves, Andrew Blake in the 21st to the Angels and Michael Bienlien in the 24th to the Tigers. Other selections of Wolfpack players were outfielder Thayer Thomas in the 33rd round to the Red Sox (he also plays football) and left-handed pitcher Evan Justice in the 39th round to the Marlins.
A trio of UNC Wilmington players was drafted: left-handed pitcher Zarion Sharpe in the 19th round to the Cardinals, righty Justin Crump in the 30th round and third baseman Cole Weiss in the 37th round, both of them to the Giants.
A couple of Western Carolina players were picked in consecutive rounds: outfielder Matthew Koehler in the 31st to the Athletics and righty Chase Walter in the 32nd to the Angels.
Gardner-Webb players were also picked in consecutive rounds: first baseman Chandler Redmond in the 32nd to the Cardinals and catcher Justin Kunz in the 33rd to the Angels.
Elon had its fourth player of the draft picked, as shortstop Cam Devanney went in the 15th round to the Brewers. Catawba’s Peyton Williams, a right-handed pitcher, was picked in the 20th round by the Braves. Campbell righty Michael Horrell was the 30th-round pick of the Astros. High Point senior catcher Daniel Millwee was the 30th-round pick of the White Sox. Another senior catcher, Harris Yett of Charlotte, was taken in the 32nd round by the Orioles. North Carolina A&T right-handed pitcher Leon Hunter was picked in the 35th round by the Rangers.