Norwin grad Connor Perry among 3 Pitt players drafted
The Pitt baseball program was well-represented on the third and final day of the MLB First-Year Player Draft on Wednesday.
Center fielder Connor Perry, a Norwin graduate, was drafted by the Detroit Tigers in the 28th round (No. 832). Perry led the Panthers with 15 home runs this season while hitting .289 with 35 RBIs.
“I cannot thank the Detroit Tigers enough for allowing this opportunity,” Perry said in a news release. “ … I can’t wait to start my professional career. Thank you everyone for the constant support and for believing in me.”
Perry spent two years at Pitt after transferring from Lackawanna County Community College. He was a .250 career hitter with the Panthers, collecting 19 doubles, three triples and 44 RBIs.
Right-handed pitchers Dan Hammer and Derek West were the first Pitt players selected this year.
Hammer went to the Baltimore Orioles in the 13th round (No. 378 overall), and West was taken by the Houston Astros in the 14th round (No. 436 overall). They are the 15th and 16th Pitt pitchers drafted since 2014.
Hammer, who is eighth in Pitt history with 189 career strikeouts, is the first Panthers player drafted by the Orioles, but he joins Pitt alum Matt Wotherspoon in the Orioles system.
“I feel extremely honored to have been selected by the Baltimore Orioles organization,” Hammer said in a news release. “ … I am very much looking forward to continuing to pursue a lifelong dream.”
West was drafted in the 28th round last year by the Atlanta Braves but decided to return to Pitt. He joins former Pitt player R.J. Freure in the Astros system.
West has been dominant for the Panthers the past two seasons after missing 2016 and ‘17 with injuries. He made 18 appearances this season, including 10 starts, with a 3.82 ERA and a team-high 82 strikeouts.
“It’s an honor to be selected in this year’s draft,” West said in a news release. “ … I am excited to see what the future has for me and what the next chapter in my life will be.”
Penn State right-hander Eric Mock was drafted in the 25th round (No. 760) by the Cleveland Indians. He compiled a 3.93 ERA this season with 77 strikeouts in 66 1/3 innings. His teammate, catcher Ryan Sloniger, went to the Toronto Blue Jays in the 38th round (No. 1,137).
In the 27th round, IUP left-hander Tyler Adams went to the Philadelphia Phillies (No. 810). Adams allowed only 16 singles and one double in 27 innings this season, but he struck out 38 and walked 39 batters and recorded a 6.33 ERA.
Other local players drafted included:
• Quaker Valley graduate and Mercyhurst senior right-hander Tyler Garbee went in the 19th round (No. 564) to the Cincinnati Reds. Through 17 appearances and 11 starts this season, Garbee has a 3.08 ERA with 109 strikeouts in 73 innings. Garbee struck out 12 and surrendered four hits over 7 2/3 innings in a 4-2 loss to Tampa on Sunday in the opening round of the NCAA Division II College World Series in Cary, N.C.
• Mt. Lebanon graduate Robert Klinchock was selected by the Tigers in the 35th round (No. 1,042). The left-hander from Shenandoah University was 7-6 with a 4.27 ERA and 71 strikeouts in 97 innings.
Jerry DiPaola is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Jerry by email at [email protected] or via Twitter .