When the Tampa Rays selected Red Wolves senior right-handed pitcher Bradley Wallace in the 10th round Friday in the Major League June Free Agent Draft it marked the third straight year that a Red Wolves hurler has been selected in the top 10 rounds
A-State has now had a player drafted in each of the last five seasons and Wallace is the ninth player drafted from Arkansas State during the Raffo era. He is also the 18th pitcher that Dickinson has had drafted in his coaching career and the fifth from Arkansas State in four seasons.
"It has been a pretty crazy evening," said Wallace. "I still haven't thought a lot about it. Hard to believe it is here.
"I had gone to the grocery story to get some chicken. It had been storming so we had not been able to get out. I was putting the bags in the car when I got the call.
"I had talked with the Rays during the day and they told me they were probably going to call me tonight or tomorrow. So I knew they were pretty interested. So I saw the number on the phone and I knew it was them.
"They asked me if I was ready to go and if I still wanted to play. They told me what they were offering and if I would accept that and I said I would and they said they would get back in touch with me in a couple of days."
Wallace, who attended high school at Rison Woodlawn, was the 307th player taken and becomes the second-highest draft pick in A-State history.
"I'm still pretty excited," he said. "It is going to be a fun couple of days. My family is coming up tomorrow and that will be a lot of fun."
As a senior, Wallace was 4-5 record and a 4.37 ERA in 15 starts. He led the pitching staff with 78.1 innings pitched and was second on the staff with 69 strikeouts. Facing elimination in the Sun Belt Conference tournament, he worked a career-high eight innings and gave up just two runs as A-State defeated South Alabama 4-3 victory.
"He gave us life and turned the tournament around for us,'' said ASU coach Tommy Raffo. "The team fed off what he did in the final four innings after grinding through the first four."
Against second-ranked Louisiana-Lafayette, he tied a career-high with 12 strikeouts.
"We are very excited about this opportunity for Bradley," Raffo said. "Bradley had a strong second half of the season and a strong performance in the conference tournament. That success gives him plenty of momentum heading into his professional career with the Rays organization.
Coach Dickinson does a great job with our pitchers every year and this is just another testament to how good of a coach he is."
As a junior he was 5-2 with a 4.33 ERA with 78 strikeouts.
"I had a couple of teams call me during the late rounds last year and I told them what it would take to get me to sign and if they didn't want to offer than then I was going back to Arkansas State. I'm glad I came back.
"It still hasn't soaked in yet. That is the dream I have had since I was a little kid playing baseball. I'm excited about the opportunity and the chance to get and go play ball with some good guys."
A-State pitcher Daniel Wright was selected in the 10th round by the Cincinnati Reds in 2013 and Jacob Lee was a ninth round selection of the Cleveland Indians in 2012. Andy Ferguson was an 18th round selection by the Royals in 2011.
Wallace Goes in the 10th
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