A big bat behind the plate
The Atlanta Braves selected Liam McGill, a catcher out of Bryant University in the ninth round.
"McGill is a former All-Stater who went on to become an Ivy League Rookie of the Year and three-time all-conference selection at Columbia (before transferring) to Bryant"
While at Columbia McGill was twice named an All-Ivy League player was a Collegiate Baseball Freshman All-American in 2017.
For the Lions, McGill batted .316/. 411/.462/.874 with 30 doubles, two triples and 14 homers in 183 games.
This season the 6’4, 225-pound backstop gained national recognition and became a third-string All American by leading the country with a .471/.541/.746/1.287 line in 37 games, walking 22 times and striking out just 23.
His brother Shawn was drafted as a catcher by the Phillies out of Boston College in 2006. He joined the Braves system in 2010 and left affiliated ball in 2013.
When the Atlanta Braves announced their final selection of the day, Jim Callis and Jonathan Mayo stared at each other with a blank look and quickly moved on. It’s really not a surprise that they haven’t heard of Dylan Spain lately, he hasn’t pitched for two years.
According to the Hawaii Tribune, Spain is a 6’-6 lefty from Honolulu who sat out this season to prepare for the draft.
"“He was very good competitor and there was upside,” Miyataki said of Spain’s recruitment. “(UHH) was great program for him to develop his skills.”"
According to his page on Baseball-Reference, Spain pitched for Hawaii-Hilo from 2017 through 2019, throwing 174 innings at a 4.24 ERA. His ERA is inflated by a rough Freshman campaign; in his last two season his ERA set in the mid-threes.
His Tweet says he’s blowing a 95-97 MPH fastball these days.
There’s a video of him as a 2018 Braves open tryout at this link.
That’s a wrap
We’re now at a stage of the draft where there’s little information on a lot of players. This point seems to have appeared a lot earlier this year than I remember it in the past.
I’ll do my best to round up the final ten selections and put together a post after the final rounds. Once the signing bonuses are known I’ll post a summary of how the Atlanta Braves spent their money.