Five former WCLers were picked in the first two rounds of the MLB draft on Monday, June 12. Wenatchee AppleSox alum Keston Hiura of UC Irvine was the 9th overall pick in the first round, the highest WCL alum selection ever in the MLB June draft.
Over the summer of 2015, Hiura tore apart WCL pitching for Wenatchee following his freshman season at UC Irvine hitting .356 with 21 doubles, 6 triples, 6 homers and 42 RBIs to earn first-team all-WCL honors.
Former Medford Rogues southpaw David Peterson of Oregon was the 20th overall pick, going to the New York Mets in the first round. Peterson pitched with the Rogues in 2014, getting his first taste of college baseball in the WCL. The lefty went 5-1 with a 3.75 ERA over 10 appearances, 8 starts and 48 innings pitched for Medford.
In total, three former Wenatchee AppleSox were picked in the first two rounds, as Drew Rasmussen of #1-ranked and Omaha Bound Oregon State went #31 overall as the first pick in the CBA Round A by Tampa Bay. Rasmussen pitched for the Sox in the summer of 2014 as he went 3-2 with a 5.16 ERA over 10 appearances, 9 starts and 45.1 innings pitched. His teammate that summer – Griffin Canning of UCLA – was selected 47th overall in the 2nd round by the Los Angeles Angels. Canning was dominant for the Sox striking out 27 over 22.1 innings pitched while walking only 3 and posting a 1.61 ERA.
Former Bellingham Bells right-hander Spencer Howard of Cal Poly went 45th overall to the Philadelphia Phillies in the second round. Howard pitched two summers with the Bells (2015 and 2016). Over two years, overall, he went 3-1 with a 2.11 ERA over 25 appearances and 55.1 innings pitched while striking out 64 and walking only 12.
ABOUT THE WEST COAST LEAGUE
The West Coast League is the premier summer collegiate baseball league west of the Mississippi. The 13-year-old, 11-team, professionally operated wood-bat league located in the beautiful Pacific Northwest features pro prospects from major conferences across the nation and an unparalleled history out west of great fan and player experiences in addition to the best summer weather in North America. In 2016, 88 players with WCL experience were selected in the MLB June draft, and more than 230 WCL alums appeared in affiliated professional baseball including 28 in the major leagues, such as 2015 home-run leader Chris Davis (Baltimore), 2015 NL Rookie of the Year runner-up Matt Duffy (Tampa Bay) and rising star pitchers Matt Andriese (Tampa Bay), Matt Boyd (Detroit) and James Paxton (Seattle). Overall member attendance was 379,611 this past season.