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Pitt

Pitcher Derek West says no to Braves, returns to Pitt

Jerry DiPaola
| Monday, June 11, 2018, 3:57 p.m.
Derek West made 13 appearances, nine starts, this season for Pitt.
Pitt Athletics
Derek West made 13 appearances, nine starts, this season for Pitt.

Pitt baseball coach Joe Jordano received good news Monday when pitcher Derek West, who was drafted in the 28th round last week by the Atlanta Braves, said he will put his professional career on hold and return to school.

West made nine starts this season for Pitt, but he saved his best efforts for the ACC tournament when he threw five hitless innings against top-seeded North Carolina in a pool-clinching victory.

“I would like to thank my friends and family for all the support and congratulations on my draft selection,” West said in a statement. “After some serious thought, I am going to wait to start my professional career, and I will be returning to the University of Pittsburgh to further my degree and develop another year as a player and person.”

West, who missed the 2016 and 2017 seasons with Tommy John surgery and a knee injury, was the 832nd overall draft pick and the third of four Pitt pitchers drafted into the major leagues this year.

Overall, five Pitt players were drafted, including pitchers R.J. Freure (Houston Astros), Matt Pidich (Cincinnati Reds) and Yaya Chentouf (Detroit Tigers) and infielder Liam Sabino (St. Louis Cardinals).

Jerry DiPaola is a Tribune-Review staff writer. Reach him at jdipaola@tribweb.com or via Twitter @JDiPaola_Trib.

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