Playoff Update: The Bears will host their super regional against Dallas Baptist at Santa Clara’s Stephen Schott Baseball Stadium, beginning on Saturday.
As we chronicled earlier in the week, the Golden Bears had several prospects that would be selected in the MLB Draft. Now that the draft is finished, where are the Bears headed for their pro careers?
Erik Johnson, as predicted, was the first player from California selected. The White Sox made him their pick (that will be a theme) in the second round, pick #80. That’s right about where he was expected to go, so Johnson should feel happy with his positioning. After his struggles against Baylor, this is a positive for him to build upon as the Bears head into their battle with Dallas Baptist.
The White Sox continued their Cal love by selecting Marcus Semien in the sixth round with the 201st pick of the draft. Alexei Ramirez has that job on lock in Chicago, so Semien may have problems finding a role at the big league level (if he gets that far). It’s still a very good round for Semien to go in, as it looked like he’d be taken a little bit later.
Dixon Anderson dropped, but only three rounds as he was drafted by the Washington Nationals in the 9th round. Dropping still will likely disappoint him, but the way he’s pitched this year means that this is a good outcome for him. Washington came out to Evans Diamond earlier in the year to scout Anderson, so they know what they’re getting with Dixon.
Chadd Krist became the third player drafted by the White Sox in the 13th round and 411th pick overall. If they all sign, there could be three Golden Bears playing in the infield for the Chicago White Sox, with Krist catching his former ace teammate. The White Sox catcher, who Giants fans such as myself know not to say his name, is getting up there in age so Chadd will have chances to start for them.
Kevin Miller did get drafted, and by a team starved for pitching in the Houston Astros. The 18th round is a good spot for him, and as a senior he could make quick moves up their system. He will have every opportunity to succeed for Houston. Making it as a starting pitcher is doubtful, but he could be a useful bullpen guy.
I admit that I didn’t think Matt Flemer would be drafted in the first 30 rounds, but he went in the 19th to the Kansas City Royals. College closers typically aren’t coveted prospects, but Flemer could end up being a good major league reliever for them. He joins Kansas City’s plethora of young talent.
Austin Booker was the last one selected, in the 33rd round by the Oakland Athletics. He’ll get to stay in the Bay Area, which is nice for him. Big league opportunities have to be earned when taken in that round, so it will be a long road up for Booker.
Congratulations go to all the Bears drafted. It’s a great chance for them to continue their baseball playing careers and to make the Bear baseball family proud. Go Bears!