Baseball update: Draft picks opt for USF
Two key signees from USF's incoming freshman class who were drafted last month have opted to stick with their commitment to the Bulls, starting summer classes rather than signing a pro contract.
Jesuit's Stephen Hunt, a first baseman and left-handed pitcher who was drafted by Oakland ahead of all of USF's players in the 17th round, said Monday he's chosen the college route and started summer classes last week. Hunt didn't say what Oakland had offered him in negotiations, but according to Baseball America, 17th-round draft picks in last year's draft drew bonuses between $140,000 and $200,000. His decision is also notable in that 21 of the 30 picks in his round have already signed, according to BA.
Another signee, Wharton right-handed Derrick Stultz, also started classes and will play for the Bulls instead of signing with the Red Sox, who drafted him in the 38th round. Stultz will have a good opportunity to pitch for the Bulls next spring with a limited number of arms returning for Lazer Collazo's staff.
We've previously reported that three signees who were drafted in the first seven rounds won't be playing for the Bulls, and signee Chris Jones of Gaither will attend St. Petersburg College if he doesn't sign with the Cleveland Indians, who drafted him in the 15th round.
-- Two returning Bulls are busy this summer playing in the prestigious Cape Cod Baseball League. Rising sophomore Shawn Sanford, who had USF's lowest ERA this spring at 3.10, has pitched well for the Yarmouth-Dennis Red Sox, with a 0.00 ERA and two saves in three appearances. He's allowed only two hits in 5.2 innings, striking out eight while walking two. Rising junior infielder Addison Maruszak is playing for the Bourne Braves, and while he's fourth on the team with 11 RBIs, his .224 batting average is the team's lowest among players with 30 or more at-bats. You can check out their Cape Cod stats here on the league's official site.
-- Speaking of 0.00 ERAs, former Bulls ace Danny Otero still has one, untouched in his first seven pro appearances with the Salem-Kaizer Volcanoes. He's seven-for-seven in save opportunities -- we're officially jinxing the daylights out of him by writing this -- with only two hits against him and zero walks. If there's a Bulls rookie with a cooler team name, it'd have to be Davis Bilardello, playing for the Batavia Muckdogs of the New York-Penn League. Bilardello has a 6.14 ERA in his first six appearances, but he's still managed two relief wins in his first three weeks as a pro.