DETROIT — The Detroit Tigers made three selections in the first 58 picks of the 2013 Major League Baseball First-Year Player Draft this evening, marking the earliest three selections by the club since making three selections in the first 55 picks of the 2001 draft.
The club selected righthanded pitcher Jonathon Crawford from the University of Florida with the 20th overall pick in the first round this evening. Crawford compiled a 3-6 record, 3.84 ERA (86.2IP/37ER) and 69 strikeouts in 15 starts as a junior with the Gators in 2013. As a sophomore at Florida, he tossed a no-hitter on June 1, 2012 against Bethune-Cookman, marking the first no-hitter by a Gators pitcher since 1991.
Crawford earned Team USA’s International Performance of the Year honor in 2012 as he posted a 3-0 record and 2.10 ERA (25.2IP/6ER) in six outings over the summer with Team USA. Four of the outings came against Cuba, which featured a roster that went on to post a 4-2 record during tournament play in the 2013 World Baseball Classic.
“The Tigers organization is pleased to select Jonathon Crawford this evening,” Tigers Vice President, Amateur Scouting and Special Assistant to the General Manager, David Chadd said. “He has a power arm with a plus slider and we’re thrilled to have the opportunity to add him to our organization.”
The 6-2, 205-pound righthander was rated by Baseball America as the ninth-best pitching prospect available in this year’s draft and the 19th-best prospect overall.
The club selected righthanded pitcher Corey Knebel from the University of Texas with the 39th overall selection in Competitive Balance Round A this evening. Knebel posted a 3-4 record, 3.38 ERA (40.0IP/15ER), nine saves and 51 strikeouts in 26 games out of the bullpen for the Longhorns.
The 6-4, 205-pound righthander posted 37 saves during his collegiate career, four shy of Huston Street’s school record. He posted a freshman record 19 saves for the Longhorns during a 2011 season that saw him earn National College Baseball Writers Association Stopper of the Year and All-America First Team honors. Knebel was also part of the Team USA Collegiate National Team in 2011, posting a 1.80 ERA (5.0IP/1ER) in five outings. He was rated by Baseball America as the 27th-best pitching prospect in this year’s draft.
The club selected lefthanded pitcher Kevin Ziomek from Vanderbilt University with the 58th overall selection in the second round this evening. Ziomek has posted an 11-2 record, 1.92 ERA (112.1IP/24ER) and 111 strikeouts in 16 starts with the Commodores during his junior season. He is tied for the SEC lead with 111 strikeouts and ranks 11th in the nation.
The 6-3, 200-pound southpaw became the 10th pitcher in Vanderbilt history to win 10-or-more games in a season and has struck out 10-or-more batters in five outings during the 2013 season. He has compiled a 19-8 record, 2.96 ERA (237.0IP/78ER) and 237 strikeouts in 62 games during his collegiate career.
The Major League Baseball First-Year Player Draft will continue on Friday, June 7 and Saturday, June 8.