High hopes for Watten, other locals in baseball draft
By Daniel Youngblood (Contact)
Abilene Reporter News
Wednesday, June 4, 2008
In his 16 years of playing baseball, Abilene Christian University junior Trey Watten has only spent two seasons as a pitcher.
Yet as the first day of the Major League Baseball 2008 First-Year Player Draft approaches, it's Watten's arm that has scouts across the country buzzing.
The two-day draft begins at 1 p.m. today and Watten headlines a group of four local players hoping to be taken in one of the draft's 50 rounds.
ACU seniors Mike Elkerson and Chris Wiman and McMurry standout Derek David also hope to hear their names called before the selections end Friday.
While Elkerson, Wiman and David all have hopes of being drafted after strong finishes to their college careers, it's almost a given that Watten will be taken by one of the 30 major league teams.
The 6-foot-4 right-hander, who went 20-3 with a 2.74 ERA over the past two seasons, has thrown bullpen sessions for the Baltimore Orioles, the Milwaukee Brewers and the Detroit Tigers in the past week and is expected to be taken sometime in the first 10 rounds.
"From what I've seen him do, we thought he'd be taken for sure in the top eight rounds, but I'm thinking fourth or fifth round is probably realistic," ACU coach Britt Bonneau said.
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