Draft selections from the Big 12 in this year’s MLB draft started out slow – only two Big 12 players were drafted among the first 156 first-year player selections – but finished strong. All total, 42 Big 12 players were selected in this year’s draft, which concluded on Saturday after three days and 40 rounds.
The 2014 Big 12 draft list compares with 36 selections a year ago and 48 draft picks from the Big 12 in 2012.
TCU left-handed weekend starter Brandon Finnegan was the first Big 12 player selected in this year’s MLB draft and the only pick from the conference in the first round. Finnegan was the 17th player overall to come off the board, the No. 1 pick of the Kansas City Royals.
Wes Benjamin of Kansas, another left-handed starter, who was injured early in the season after suffering a season-ending elbow injury, was the second Big 12 pick in this year’s draft, going in the fifth round (156th overall) to the Texas Rangers. Benjamin made only seven starts in 2014 and had a 4-0 record with a 4.21 ERA.
Seven of the first 13 players selected from Big 12 rosters were pitchers, underscoring the pitcher-heavy nature of this year’s MLB draft. Five of those seven throw from the left side, which has long been a strong asset in the major leagues. Three of the first four draft picks from the Big 12 were left-handed starters and all four were pitchers.
The final Big 12 player selection came on Day 3 in the 38th round. Cody Jones, an outfielder for TCU, was selected by the Cleveland Indians with the 1,148th overall pick in the draft.
Surprising Kansas, which finished in third place this season in the conference standings, TCU, Texas and West Virginia led all Big 12 teams with six draft selections each. Big 12 regular-season champion Oklahoma State was right behind, with five draft picks.
Interestingly, the first 20 Big 12 players picked in the draft this year were selected by 20 different major-league teams. Overall, the Detroit Tigers, Houston Astros, Chicago White Sox and Oakland Athletics each selected three Big 12 players, all from the American League.
The Cincinnati Reds, Chicago Cubs, San Francisco Giants and San Diego Padres, all National League teams, were the only four major-league teams that did not take a player from the Big 12 among their first-year player picks.
Sixteen of the 42 Big 12 draft picks were right-handed pitchers. There were 10 outfielders selected, seven left-handed pitchers (six of the seven in the first 11 rounds), four catchers, three shortstops and two first basemen.
Big 12 Players Selected In 2014 MLB Draft
17. Brandon Finnegan, TCU, LHP – Kansas City Royals
156. Wes Benjamin, Kansas, LHP – Texas Rangers
167. Chris Sadberry, Texas Tech, LHP – Miami Marlins
170. John Curtis, Texas, RHP – Minnesota Twins
187. Mac James, Oklahoma, C – Tampa Bay Rays
190. Ross Kivett, Kansas State, OF – Detroit Tigers
206. Mitch Meyer, Kansas State, OF – Milwaukee Brewers
212. Mark Payton, Texas, OF – New York Yankees
228. Bobby Boyd, West Virginia, OF Houston Astros
233. Houston Musgrave, West Virginia, LHP, Colorado Rockies
249. Hunter Redman, Texas Tech, C – Los Angeles Dodgers
269. Jordan Kipper, TCU, RHP – Los Angeles Dodgers
287. Dillon Peters, Texas, LHP – Miami Marlins
318. Zach Fish, Oklahoma State, OF – Chicago White Sox
325. Connor Buchmann, Oklahoma RHP – New York Mets
331. John Means, West Virginia, LHP – Baltimore Orioles
382. Nathan Thornhill, Texas, RHP – Philadelphia Phillies
398, Austin Fisher, Kansas State, SS – Cleveland Indians
401. Frank Duncan, Kansas, RHP – Pittsburgh Pirates
420. Kevin Cron, TCU, 1B – Arizona Diamondbacks
422. Sean Carley, West Virginia, RHP – New York Yankees
441. Lukas Schiraldi, Texas, RHP – Seattle Mariners
444. Ryan McBroom, West Virginia, OF – Toronto Blue Jays
580. Parker French, Texas, RHP – Detroit Tigers
623. Josh Michalec, Baylor, RHP – Colorado Rockies
642. Tim Proudfoot, Texas Tech, SS – Oakland Athletics
672. Brandon McCurry, Oklahoma State, RHP, Oakland Athletics
703. Tanner Kreitemeier, Oklahoma State, 1B – Atlanta Braves
706. Vince Wheeland, Oklahoma State, RHP – Houston Astros
708. Michael Suiter, Kansas, OF – Chicago White Sox
754. Kyle Bacak, TCU, C – Washington Nationals
791. Jerrick Suiter, TCU, OF – Pittsburgh Pirates
839. Jordan Piche, Kansas, RHP – Los Angeles Angels
852. Corey Walter, West Virginia, RHP – Oakland Athletics
895. Tucker Tharp, Kansas, OF – New York Mets
946. Robert Kahana, Kansas, RHP – Houston Astros
948. Adam Choplick, Oklahoma, LHP – Chicago White Sox
1000. Jon Perrin, Oklahoma State, RHP – Detroit Tigers
1005. Dominic Moreno, Texas Tech, RHP – St. Louis Cardinals
1124. Hector Lorenzana, Oklahoma, SS – Boston Red Sox
1130. Brett Doe, Baylor, C – Minnesota Twins
1148. Cody Jones, OF – Cleveland Indians