Cardinals select 30 players on draft's final day
The St. Louis Cardinals finished off the annual MLB Draft process on Saturday, selecting 30 players on the draft's third and final day.
In total, they selected 42 players, including 19 pitchers (16 right-handers and three left-handers), nine infielders, 10 outfielders and four catchers. Thirty-four of the players came from the collegiate ranks, while eight were high schoolers.
Five of the players are still playing in the College World Series: pitchers Dakota Hudson and Austin Sexton of Mississippi State, catcher Andrew Knizner of North Carolina State, outfielder J.R. Davis with Oklahoma State and pitcher Pat Krall with Clemson.
Players came from hometowns covering 24 different U.S. states, Puerto Rico and Canada. Seven Cardinals draftees came from California, while three each were picked from Alabama, Florida and Missouri.
The Cardinals drafted one St. Louis-area player and three players total from the state of Missouri. Right-handed pitcher Robbie Gordon, a 36th-round pick from Maryville University, is a St. Louis native who went to Ladue High School and threw the first perfect game in Maryville history on March 13. Infielder J.D. Murders, a 31st-rounder, is a high school draftee with a letter of intent to Texas Tech University. He's a Missouri native hailing from Bolivar, a community north of Springfield. Right-handed pitcher Robert Calvano, a Kansas City native taken in the 38th round, played college baseball at the University of Nebraska-Omaha.
Several draftees came with exemplary athletic accolades. Outfielder Shane Billings, taken in the 12th round, was an NCBWA second-team All-American in 2016, batting .444 with an 1.141 OPS and stealing 56 bases over two seasons at Wingate College. J.R. Davis (15th round) was a first-team All-Big 12 infielder at Oklahoma State. He hit .360 for the season and hit for the cycle against West Virginia on April 3, becoming the first Cowboy to pull off the feat since 2011. Stefan Trosclair (20th round) ranked 12th among Division I players with 16 home runs in 2015, and he hit 23 home runs over the past two seasons. Pat Krall (28th round) leads Clemson in wins (10), ERA (1.67), appearances (29) and saves (five) this season. He's tied for the 15th-most wins among Division I pitchers this year, and he's ranked eighth in ERA. Noel Gonzalez (29th round) ranked 18th in NAIA with eight saves, helping Lewis-Clark State College to their 18th NAIA national championship.