By David Kim
Senior Brendan Beck was selected as the 55th overall pick by the New York Yankees in the second round of the 2021 MLB Draft on July 12. In 55 total collegiate appearances, the 6-foot-2 right-handed pitcher posted a 3.11 ERA and 22-11 record.
Beck joins a storied franchise in the Yankees, who have won 27 World Series rings and 40 American League Pennants, the most in the MLB. In 2020, the Yankees made their fourth consecutive postseason appearance but were eliminated by the Tampa Bay Rays in the American League Division Series.
“I was super excited to join the Yankees,” Beck said. “I’ve never really been to NYC, so the thought of playing there is really exciting to me.”
Beck was named the 2021 Pac-12 Pitcher of the Year and was selected for the Rawlings All-America first team and Collegiate Baseball All-America second team. In his senior year, Beck finished the season with 143 strikeouts, the fourth-most in the nation and sixth-most in Stanford history.
In a 2021 season that saw the Cardinal reach the College World Series (CWS) in Omaha, Nebraska, for the first time since 2008, Beck pitched every week, earning his career-best 13 strikeouts against Texas Tech in the Super Regionals.
“I went about every day thinking about the end goal of Omaha,” Beck said.
Stanford swept Texas Tech to move into the College World Series. Although the team lost to North Carolina State to open their CWS campaign, the Cardinal bounced back in their elimination game, defeating Arizona State University. Despite losing to Vanderbilt in a second elimination game, Beck is proud of what his team was able to accomplish this season.
“We faced obstacles that no other team in the country had to face, and to make it as far as we did, and to help reignite the passion for the program of former Stanford baseball players is something I will always be proud of,” Beck said.
Throughout his baseball career, Beck’s approach to the game has always been rooted in staying in the present and “taking things day by day.” As he begins his journey to the Bronx, Beck plans to let that ethos guide him: “I’ve never been one to look too far into the future, but rather just trying to attack each day and get better.”
Beck will join Cardinal baseball athletes Tim Tawa and Christian Robinson in the 2021 MLB Draft class. Tawa was selected in the 12th round by the Arizona Diamondbacks, and Robinson in the 15th round by the Atlanta Braves.