KANSAS CITY, Mo. – Major League Baseball (MLB) concluded its 2019 First Year Player Draft on Wednesday. 10 teams selected 15 student-athletes from the NAIA ranks as the draft concluded.
Georgia Gwinnett, Hope International (Calif.), Oklahoma City and The Master’s (Calif.) led the way with two selections over the course of the annual 40 round event.
Cam Coursey from Georgia Gwinnett had the honor as the first selected from NAIA institution in the 13th round (392 overall) to the Arizona Diamondbacks. The second basemen hit .458 for the Grizzlies on the year with a .687 slugging percentage and led the NAIA with nine triples.
Coursey was not only a threat at the plate, but also on the base path, where he recorded 20 stolen bases in 23 attempts in 2019. The sophomore struck-out just 12 times in 227 at-bats.
NAIA Player of the Year Aaron Shackelford from The Master’s was the next off the board in the 14th round (424 overall) to the Pittsburgh Pirates. Shackelford ended his season third on the all-time list in the NAIA with 36 home runs. The senior was ranked No. 1 in the nation in nine offensive categories including home runs, home runs per game (.692), runs scored per game (1.596), runs batted in per game (1.904), total RBI (99) and slugging percentage (1.096). The shortstop ended his career with a .332 batting average and slugging percentage of .684. In 2019, he more than tripled his home run production from 2018, a year that he finished with 11.
Overall, 11 NAIA institutions had a draftee in 2019 and eight conferences were represented. The Golden State Athletic Conference led all NAIA conferences with four selections. The Association of Independent Institutions, Heart of America Athletic Conference, Sooner Athletic Conference and The Sun Conference all followed with two selections each.
The Milwaukee Brewers selected four NAIA student-athletes to lead all MLB teams in 2019.
2019 NAIA MLB First Year Player Draft Selections
|Name||Institution||Pos.||Rd.||Pick #||MLB Team|
|Cam Coursey||Georgia Gwinnett||2B||13||392||Arizona Diamondbacks|
|Aaron Shackelford||The Master's (Calif.)||SS||14||424||Pittsburgh Pirates|
|Shaine McNeely||Hope International (Calif.)||RHP||16||495||New York Yankees|
|Niall Windeler||British Columbia||P||19||569||Minnesota Twins|
|Bryce Milligan||Oklahoma City||RHP||19||583||Milwaukee Brewers|
|Eddy Tavarez||Peru State (Neb.)||RHP||21||643||Milwaukee Brewers|
|Matthew Swain||Georgia Gwinnett||RHP||23||689||Minnesota Twins|
|Justin Friedman||Hope International (Calif.)||P||26||770||Chicago White Sox|
|Anthony Lepre||The Master's (Calif.)||C||28||846||Seattle Mariners|
|Elliott Cary||Oklahoma City||CF||29||862||Detroit Tigers|
|Jackie Urbaez||St. Thomas (Fla.)||2B||29||883||Milwaukee Brewers|
|Peyton Long||Central Methodist (Mo.)||RHP||30||913||Milwaukee Brewers|
|Dylan Shockley||Rio Grande (Ohio)||C||34||1024||Pittsburgh Pirates|
|Willie Carter||Webber International (Fla.)||LF||34||1027||Atlanta Braves|
|Dylan Hoffman||Waldorf (Iowa)||LHP||39||1163||San Diego Padres|