Rays select UNC-Wilmington shortstop Greg Jones with 22nd overall pick in MLB draft
ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. — The Tampa Bay Rays have selected shortstop Greg Jones from the University of North Carolina Wilmington with the No. 22 pick in the first round of the 2019 Major League Baseball First-Year Player Draft.
Jones, 21, hit .341/.491/.543 (76-for-223) with 12 doubles, nine triples, five home runs, 36 RBI and 42 stolen bases in 63 games (62 starts) for UNC Wilmington this season. The switch-hitter ranked fifth among Division I players and led the Colonial Athletic Association in stolen bases. He led the conference in on-base pct., triples, runs (70) and walks (55) and ranked second in batting avg. and hits. His nine triples and 42 stolen bases both tied single-season program records. He was named the conference’s Player of the Year, becoming the first shortstop to win it since 2010. In addition, he was named Most Outstanding Player of the CAA Tournament, helping Wilmington clinch an appearance in the NCAA Regionals.
Jones became the highest selection ever out of the University of North Carolina Wilmington. He helped lead the Seahawks to the conference championship in both of his seasons there. He was previously selected by the Baltimore Orioles in the 17th round of the 2017 June Draft out of Cary (N.C.) High School, the same school that produced outfielder Paul Wilder, the first draft pick in franchise history. As a 21-year-old, he was draft-eligible following his sophomore season.