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USF juniors Hunt, Barbosa drafted in 15th

The conventional thinking entering this week's MLB draft was that junior pitchers Randy Fontanez and Andrew Barbosa would be the first Bulls drafted, but both pitchers were still on the board when junior outfielder Stephen Hunt was picked in the 15th round by the Cincinnati Reds.

Barbosa didn't last long, however, as 11 picks later, the 6-foot-8 left-hander was picked by the San Francisco Giants, also in the 15th round. It's actually the third time the Giants have drafted him -- they took him in the 15th round out of high school but couldn't sign him, and tried again in the 48th round in 2007, to no avail.

Hunt was USF's best all-around hitter in 2010, leading the Bulls in RBIs (44), hits (67), slugging percentage (.509) and stolen bases (13) while tying for the team lead with seven RBIs. The Reds could hit the Bulls outfield twice this summer, as Cincinnati also drafted USF signee Kyle Waldrop in the 12th round.

"I'm extremely happy -- just really excited about this," said Hunt, who was golfing with his father and friends when his mother called him with the news. "I hadn't put too much thought into (deciding between USF and the pros) yet. I'm just kind of appreciating the experience right now."

What's interesting with Hunt is that he might have been drafted as a left-handed pitcher -- that's how the Reds listed him in submitting his name to the draft. Hunt pitched just one inning this season, getting all three outs by strikeouts, but he pitched extensively as a freshman, logging 17.2 innings in 24 appearances out of the bullpen.

Hunt said he became a "huge Reds fan" when Cincinnati signed outfielder Ken Griffey Jr., who was his favorite player growing up.

Barbosa, a walk-on from Riverview High School, led the Bulls with an 8-2 record and 2.40 ERA, and finished second behind Fontanez with 95 strikeouts. He was selected to the second-team All-Big East team as a junior.

[Last modified: Friday, July 16, 2010 11:25am]

    

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