Two current University of Alabama baseball players, two UA signees and a junior college commit were chosen in the final day of the 2017 MLB Draft.
Left-handed pitcher Dylan Cyphert, a junior college signee from Gulf Coast Community College, was the first to be chosen on Wednesday. He was chosen in the 17th round with the 509th overall pick by the Miami Marlins. A tweet from Cyphert on Wednesday appeared to indicate he planned to sign a professional contract rather than attend UA.
So thankful and excited for this opportunity!!! Gonna be a Marlin! https://t.co/HBmGafJhMV
— Dylan Cyphert (@drcyphert) June 14, 2017
Cyphert started 13 games this season for Gulf Coast and was 5-3 with a 4.57 ERA. He allowed 62 hits and 40 walks in 63 innings pitched while striking out 71. If he chooses to attend UA, he would likely have an opportunity to compete for a starting job in the weekend rotation.
Right-handed pitcher Alex Valverde, listed as a UA commit in his Twitter profile, was chosen 649th overall in the 22nd round by the Tampa Bay Rays. Valverde was 8-1 with a 1.80 ERA at Miami Dade College last season in 14 games, including 13 starts. He had 92 strikeouts in 85 innings this season.
Reliever Garrett Suchey was the first current Alabama player to come off the board. He was drafted in the 26th round with the 780th overall pick by the Kansas City Royals. UA was the last SEC school to have a current player drafted.
Suchey was the workhorse in the Alabama bullpen this season. He threw a team-high 73 2/3 innings this season with a 3.18 ERA. He struck out 70 batters while allowing 50 hits and 26 walks.
Sophomore outfielder Chandler Taylor was drafted by the Minnesota Twins with the 796th pick in the 27th round. Taylor was Alabama’s only All-SEC player last season, batting .282 with a team-high 16 home runs and 34 RBIs.
Junior college outfielder Josiah Breaux was chosen in the 36th round by the Philadelphia Phillies with the 1,073rd overall pick. He signed with Alabama from McLennan Community College in Texas. Breaux batted .356 with a .476 on-base percentage this season. He posted 68 RBIs and 10 home runs in 65 games.
UA previously had two high school signees drafted on the first two day of the draft. McGill-Toolen Catholic High School outfielder Leslie “Bubba” Thompson was chosen with the 26th pick in the first round by the Texas Rangers. Cullman High School left-handed pitcher Jacob Heatherley was chosen 77th overall in the third round by the Cincinnati Reds. Both are considered likely to sign pro contracts rather than attend college.
A handful of key Alabama players who were eligible to be chosen went undrafted. Junior pitcher Jake Walters, UA’s No. 1 starter for most of the season, was not chosen. Shortstop Chandler Avant and first baseman Cody Henry were not chosen as well. Senior righty Nick Eicholtz, who was drafted in the 13th round last year after his junior season, was also undrafted.