By Derek Shao
This past June, 10 Stanford baseball players were taken in the 2017 MLB First-Year Player Draft, a school record since the draft was reduced to 40 rounds in 2012 and one off the all-time school record set in 1992.
At the top of Stanford’s draft class was outfielder Quinn Brodey ‘18, who was taken in the third round by the New York Mets. Brodey led the Cardinal this past season with a .314 batting and ranked among the top players in the Pac-12 statistically.
Given the Mets’ aging outfield and dearth of outfield prospects, Brodey may play a significant role in the team’s future as a balanced bat, although he may need to improve upon his arm and speed in the field.
“I would like to thank the New York Mets organization for giving me the opportunity to start my professional baseball career and to continue chasing my dreams,” Brodey said. “Thank you to Coach Marquess and Coach Filter for believing in me and giving me the chance to be a student-athlete at Stanford.”
Just 22 picks later, right-handed closer and Brodey’s roommate, Colton Hock ‘18 was taken in the fourth round by the Miami Marlins. In 2017, the two-time All-Pac-12 selection set a single-season school record of 16 saves, finished second all-time at Stanford with 25 career saves and held a team-best ERA of 2.08. His accomplishments earned him numerous All-American team selections, including a spot on the National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association All-America first team.
The second pitcher to be taken by the Marlins in the draft, Hock joins an organization in dire need of starting pitching. Hock started two games for the Cardinal during his freshman year, but given his success as a reliever, the Marlins will most likely opt to keep him in the bullpen.
“I want to thank my teammates and the Stanford community for the overwhelming support these past three years, and allowing me the opportunity to wear a Stanford uniform,” Hock said. “Today I got to live out my biggest dream, hearing my name called during the MLB Draft. I want to thank the Miami Marlins organization for this opportunity.”
Other notable Stanford draft picks included first baseman Matt Winaker ‘18 and right-hander Tristan Beck ‘19.
Taken in the fifth round, Winaker joins teammate Brodey on the Mets. After ending the 2017 season with an impressive .993 fielding percentage, the All-Pac-12 selection was named to the All-Pac-12 Defensive Team for the second straight year. As the Cardinal’s leadoff hitter, Winaker played his role perfectly with an on-base percentage of .432 which was ranked among the top 10 in the Pac-12.
“I want to thank the New York Mets organization for providing me this incredible opportunity,” Winaker said. “I have wanted to play professional baseball for as long as I can remember, and I’m excited to attack this next phase of my life.”
Beck, a former potential first-rounder in 2015, was taken in the 29th round by the New York Yankees. After a successful freshman campaign in which he tallied a 6-5 record with a 2.48 ERA, Beck earned First-Team Freshman All-American and All-Pac-12 honors. However, he missed the entire 2017 season due to a stress fracture, and is poised to return to the Cardinal for his junior year. If Beck is able to build upon his past success, he may find himself back in early-round discussion in 2018.
Contact Derek Shao at derek.s2500 ‘at’ gmail.com.