Make us your home page
Instagram

Get the quickest, smartest news, analysis and photos from the Bucs game emailed to you shortly after the final whistle.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Rays draft several with family ties to game

ST. PETERSBURG — The talent and skills are solid, the physical traits impressive, the high school or college statistics noteworthy.

But as the Rays on Friday completed the second day of the MLB draft, something else stood out among three of their top 11 picks: bloodlines.

Infielder Riley Unroe, taken in the second round late Thursday with the 60th pick, is the son of former major-leaguer Tim Unroe. Second baseman Kean Wong, a fourth-round pick on Friday, is the younger brother of top Cardinals prospect Kolten Wong. And RHP Aaron Griffin, their 10th-round pick, is the young brother of A's starter A.J. Griffin.

"I think it's always good; it helps," scouting director R.J. Harrison said. "In all of those guys' cases, it should be an advantage. They should have a little edge going in as far as the lifestyle and everything like that."

Unroe, 17, is listed as a shortstop, but Harrison said he could end up at second base or in centerfield. "A pick we were really excited about," Harrison said, and optimistic they can sign him despite a commitment to Southern Cal.

Overall, Harrison said he is pleased with the haul so far, which includes five pitchers, four left-handed hitters and one switch-hitter: "It was a great night (Thursday), it was a good day (Friday)."

THE ONE: Harrison said the Rays are confident they can sign their top pick, C Nick Ciuffo, who has a scholarship offer from South Carolina, by the July 12 deadline.

"We feel good about getting it done," Harrison said. "He's excited. Now we start the process with advisers and that. Hopefully it'll move quickly. … I think it's really to everybody's best interest to get them out and start playing and not lose this development time, in particular those high school guys."

MISCELLANY: OF Thomas Milone, the fourth-round pick, was also quite a football player at Connecticut's Masuk High, scoring 35 touchdowns his senior year as a running back and punt returner. … Though fifth-round pick Johnny Field, whose dad, John, was signed by the Bucs at one point, played centerfield at Arizona, the Rays will explore moving him to second base.

Rays draft several with family ties to game 06/07/13 [Last modified: Saturday, June 8, 2013 12:17am]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. U.S. repeats as Solheim Cup champion

    Golf

    WEST DES MOINES, Iowa — Lexi Thompson set the tone by rallying from four holes down. The rest of the Americans took it from there and restored their dominance in the Solheim Cup

    Lexi Thompson, left, comes back from four holes down to halve the day’s first singles match with Europe’s Anna Nordqvist to set the tone for the United States.
  2. Rays see the Blake Snell they've been waiting for in win over Mariners

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG — It was a one-run game Sunday when the Mariners' Robinson Cano singled with one out in the seventh inning, bringing the dangerous Nelson Cruz to the plate.

    Tampa Bay Rays starting pitcher Blake Snell (4) throwing in the third inning of the game between the Seattle Mariners and the Tampa Bay Rays at Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg, Fla. on Sunday, Aug. 20, 2017.
  3. Bucs journal: Demar Dotson (mild groin strain) expected back for opener

    Bucs

    TAMPA — The Bucs got good news Sunday on starting right tackle Demar Dotson, whose MRI exam showed only a mild right groin sprain and who should be back at practice next week.

    Tackle Demar Dotson has only a mild groin strain.
  4. Bucs counting on better health creating better pass rush

    Bucs

    TAMPA — Ask Bucs coaches about the improved depth and health of their defensive line, and they'll look around for a piece of wood to knock on.

    Retired All-Pro defensive end  Simeon Rice, right, the last Buc to have double-digit sacks in a season,  works with defensive end Ryan Russell, who last season was promoted from the practice squad for the second half of the year as injuries piled up. He is competing for a backup job this year.
  5. Rays journal: Jake Faria heads to DL with left abdominal strain

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG — RHP Jacob Faria made the trek he didn't want to take after his last start. It was to the trainer's room. The pain in his left abdominal went from nagging to an issue during his start that night in Toronto.

    Tampa Bay Rays starting pitcher Jacob Faria (34) throwing in the first inning of the game between the Milwaukee Brewers and the Tampa Bay Rays at Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg, Fla. on Friday, August 4, 2017.