Barely an hour into Tuesday’s resumption of the three-day process two more Mississippi State baseball signees were selected, in the fourth round at that. Righthanded pitcher Troy Bacon of Tampa, Fla., by way of Santa Fe College was taken by Atlanta as the #110 overall pick.
Six names later it was lefthanded pitcher Pearson McMahan, another Florida juco star from St. John’s River State. He was taken by Colorado as #116.
The published draft slot values are $487,000 and $459,000 respectively.
Bacon and McMahan are two of the seven primary pitchers in the recruiting class put together by former coach John Cohen and completed on very short notice by Andy Cannizaro after his November hiring. There are two other position player/pitchers on the official recruit roster.
Cohen and Cannizaro recognized the risks with this recruiting class, as many of the 19 announced signees were projected as high draft targets. That has been verified after just four rounds.
Monday evening, two other Bulldog recruits were taken in the second round. Detroit grabbed juco first baseman/outfielder Rey Rivera at #57 overall; and high school outfielder Quentin Holmes was taken at #64 by Cleveland. Both are certainly expected to sign, with slot values of $1.15 million and $970,000.
Bacon and McMahan also are projected to take their offers now having gone this high.
Mississippi State will be watching for further draft damage to the recruiting class, as well as the underclassman roster. Bulldogs celebrated Monday night’s call of SEC Player of the Year Brent Rooker in the first round, to Minnesota. He became the 14th first-round pick in program history.
Rooker was supposed to take his big bat on to pro ball this year. The waiting game is with draft-eligible sophomore outfielder Jake Mangum, and junior shortstop Ryan Gridley. Both were All-SEC performers this season, Mangum repeating on the all-league team.
Tuesday’s draft will get through the 20th round; with the 21-through-40 rounds on Wednesday. This will be updated with each round, so to speak, of drafted Dogs.
UPDATED: Tuesday is done and while no more of Mississippi State’s official fall signees were taken, a spring commitment was. Texas picked first baseman Tyreque Reed, an Itawamba C.C. standout, in the 8th round and #254 overall. His slot is listed at $149,000, and he was taken well-ahead of his projected draft standing. So the odds he will make it to campus fall accordingly.
The good news for Mississippi State is several well-scouted prospects who were projected to go in the 10-to-20 rounds were not drafted. Outfielder Jordan Anderson was rated in the 5-to-10 round range in fact, but has indicted he wants college first. Juco pitcher John Mason didn’t get called out on Tuesday either, a good sign.
Cannizaro did not have time to do a lot of last-minute recruiting when he arrived in Starkville. But he did score by turning Mobile, Ala., product Tanner Allen, a multi-position star of both infield and outfield. Allen had top-ten round ratings but has told scouts he wants to play college ball and obviously they listened.
However there is still all Wednesday and a whole half-draft left. Mississippi State has also seen players and signees tabbed in the later rounds and still sign, especially if offered left-over money from clubs’ draft pools not used on other drafted players who don’t sign. This happened with catcher Jack Kruger in 2016, as he waited until the deadline for Los Angeles’ Angles to come up with a last-minute better offer.
OFFICIAL BULLDOG BASEBALL SIGNEES 2016-17 (Does Not Include Commitments)
OF/IF Tanner Allen L/R Mobile, Ala., UMS-Wright Prep
OF Jordan Anderson R/R Madison, Ala., James Clemens HS
P Troy Bacon R/R Tampa, Fl. Santa Fe College
P Chad Bryant R/R Thomasville, Ala., HS
IF Justin Foscue R/R Huntsville, Ala., Grissom HS
C Marshall Gilbert R/R Trevor, Wis., Logan College
OF Josh Hatcher L/L Albany, Ga., Lee HS
OF Quentin Holmes R/R East Elmhurst, NY, McClancy HS
P/1B Bryce Hutchinson R/R Port Orange, Fla., DeLand HS
IF Rowdey Jordan S/R Auburn, Ala., HS
P Jared Liebelt R/R Aurora, Ill., Waubonse CC
OF/1B/P Owen Lovell R/R Cullman, Ala., HS
P John Mason R/R Tampa, Fla., Wallace State CC Ala.
P Pearson McMahan L/R Middleburg, Fla., St. John’s River State
1B Alex Pener S/R Overland Park, KS, Scottsdale AZ CC
1B/OF Rey Rivera L/R Toa Alta, P.R., Chipola FL JC
P Zan Stephens R/R Live Oak, Fla., Suwannee HS
P Cam Voss L/L Fredonia, NY, Niagara Cty CC
IF Jostan Westburg R/R New Braunfels, TX HS