So, why not reward productive college seniors? I can't think of a better way to recognize a great college player than to draft them, and let them say they played pro ball. Plus, I'm a sucker for production, and whose to say some of these ultra-productive players can't find a way to stay productive as a pro?
My thoughts on college seniors guide my thinking as I compile the day 3 preview. Day 2 is probably my favorite to follow, but this list might be the most fun to put together. History suggests a number of the players I'm about to highlight won't get drafted, but I hope a tip of the cap from my perch in the Pacific Northwest is worth something. Here are some guys to root for as the draft comes to a close:
Players still available from the day 2 preview:
- Nick Backlund, 1B, Mercer
- Andrew Barbosa, LHP, South Florida
- Pat Christensen, RHP, La Salle
- Ross Heffley, 2B, Western Carolina
- D.J. Hicks, 1B, Central Florida
- Zach Kirksey, OF, Mississippi
- Trenton Moses, 3B, SE Missouri State
- Kenton Parmley, SS, SE Missouri State
- Cody Poteet, RHP, Christian HS (CA)
- Jimmy Reed, LHP, Maryland
- Josh Scheffert, 3B, Nebraska
- Chase Stevens, RHP, Oklahoma State
- Dan Tobik, RHP, Tennessee-Martin
- Anthony Vega, OF, Manhattan
- Tyler Webb, LHP, South Carolina
Some highly productive college players from across the nation:
- Brian Billigen, OF, Cornell - Senior from the academically prestigious university posted good numbers across the board.
- Jimmy Brenneman, OF, Campbell - Senior stole 30 bases this season, so he's got some speed.
- Andy Chriscaden, 1B, Kennesaw State - Senior went to high school in Monroe, Washington, so he's got some local ties! Also smashed 13 home runs.
- Boomer Collins, OF, Dallas Baptist - Redshirt junior hit for some intriguing power, as 47 of his 82 hits went for extra bases.
- Scott Coffman, RHP, New Mexico State - Senior closer filled up the stat sheet in all the right ways.
- Aaron Dobbs, INF, Kennesaw State - Flashed good speed with a decent contact rate, all with a stylish mustache.
- Mac Doyle, OF, Wofford - Played DH quite a bit at Wofford, but maybe his power/speed combo can translate in the outfield.
- Ross Hammonds, RHP, Western Kentucky - Hammonds is a 5'10" redshirt senior reliever with an ERA over 4.00, but his peripherals were excellent. Why not give him a shot?
- R.J. Hively, RHP, Mississippi - A one-year wonder as a senior, but a one-year wonder in the SEC.
- Will Hudgins, RHP, Notre Dame - 6'4" senior starter put together a solid campaign for the Fighting Irish.
- Dustin Hunter, RHP, Western Illinois - Senior starter with some control issues, but also a ton of strikeouts.
- Stewart Ijames, OF, Louisville - Led the Big East in RBIs by 10!
- Goose Kallunki, 1B, Utah Valley - Senior with a big body (6'5", 236 pounds), and big-time production - enough to get interviewed on a podcast!
- Daniel Kassouf, 1B, Appalachian State - Slugged more than his fair share of home runs this spring, ending up as Appalachian State's single season home run king.
- Jonathan Murphy, OF, Jacksonville - Senior stole 41 bases this season, with a little bit of power too.
- Robby Newman, 1B/OF, Longwood - Showed some power with a bit of surprising speed as a senior for one of the few independent teams in Division I baseball.
- Dylan Pratt, OF, East Tennessee State - Hit 16 dingers as a senior this year.
- Dustin Quattrocchi, LHP, SIU-Edwardsville - Senior reliever with a breakout year out of nowhere. Posted a 0.66 ERA on the season!
- Dayne Quist, LHP, UC Davis - 5'10" redshirt senior busted out with by far the best season of his career.
- Caleb Reed, P, Mississippi State - 5'10" senior had a very good year coming out of the bullpen.
- Marquis Riley, 2B, North Carolina A&T - I highlighted Riley as a junior last season, thanks to his insanely low strikeout rate with some speed. His senior year wasn't quite as spectacular, but he's still a guy with great contact ability and a little speed.
- Gera Sanchez, RHP, New Mexico - Senior had a very productive season switching between the rotation and bullpen. According to an interview from a few years ago, Sanchez is an unusual friend. Another fun fact: Sanchez (at least as a sophomore) would be part of border patrol if he wasn't pitching!
- Joe Scanio, RHP, Northwestern State - Burly senior starter put together an all-around great season.
I'll be back at the end of the draft to recap where these players went. If you want to follow along live with the picks, the MLB Draft Tracker is the place to go. I couldn't find what time the draft starts up again. Way to go, MLB, making that info so readily available. My guess is 9am.