Posted: 8:00 p.m. Saturday, June 8, 2013
By Anson Whaley
Pitt had three players selected in the 2013 Major League Baseball Draft. Pitcher Ethan Mildren went first in the 12th round to the Minnesota Twins at No. 350 overall. Catcher Elvin Soto then went next in the 16th round to the Arizona Diamondbacks at #480. Last was pitcher Matt Wotherspoon, who went in the 20th round to the Detroit Tigers at #606.
The three picks in one season were tied for the most behind only 2011 in school history.
Mildren and Wotherspoon went about as expected, but according to Baseball America, Soto was ranked as the #229 player in the draft. But instead of going in the seventh round where that pick fell last year, Soto slid and slid ... and slid.
Next up is the big question of which of these guys will be back and which will take the money and jump to the pros. It's, of course, going to come down partially to how much they can get. That amount is to be determined, but last year, the players in the tenth round were getting $125,000.
It's pretty clear that losing all three means Pitt would be hard pressed to replace all three. Soto and Mildren made All Big East First Team and Wotherspoon was on the second team. If all three leave, 2/3 of their starting rotation would need to be replaced and the team also loses its catcher, Soto, who handles the staff.
It's easy to say that these guys should come back to improve their stock, but there's no guarantee that happens. Plus, there's the threat of future injury and if you've got a chance to play in a farm system for a major league team, that's got to be a little difficult to pass up.