Mitch Watrous had a career 3.40 ERA with nine wins.
June 6, 2014
SALT LAKE CITY - Utah baseball players Mitch Watrous and Nick Green were both selected on the second day of the 2014 MLB Draft on Friday afternoon. Watrous was selected in the eighth round, going as the 237th overall selection to the San Diego Padres, while Green was a 10th-round selection (303rd overall) to the Kansas City Royals.
Watrous and Green are the fifth and sixth players to be drafted in the first 10 rounds during the Bill Kinneberg era, joining C.J. Cron (first round, 2011), Stephen Fife (third round, 2008), Tyler Wagner (fourth round, 2012) and Rick Anton (eighth round, 2011).
Watrous will forgo his senior year at Utah to sign with the Padres. Green recently finished his senior season at Utah.
Watrous is a two-time honorable mention all-Pac-12 selection. He finished his season with a 3.91 ERA and a team-leading 76 strikeouts, which ranked ninth in the league. He was second in the conference in strikeouts looking (32) and ranked 10th in innings pitched through the regular season (96 1/3). Watrous had Utah's only shutout of the season, pitching seven innings in Utah's 12-0 win over Nevada and allowing just two hits with seven strikeouts. He had a season-high nine strikeouts against Oregon, and struck out eight vs. Michigan State and USC. Watrous' three victories this season came over UT Arlington, UCLA and Nevada.
"I'm just overwhelmed right now," Watrous said. "I'm grateful for this opportunity. I never thought I would get this chance, and it's a huge blessing. I'm thankful for everyone who has helped me along the way, including my family, my coaches and my teammates.
"I will miss the team, our chemistry, and all of the guys and the coaches, and being around those guys every day. I'm real proud of Nick too. It's good to see him get picked up."
Green was Utah's go-to closer this season, making a team-high 23 appearances on the mound, including several key appearances in extra-inning wins during the year. He ended the regular season ninth in the Pac-12 with six saves, and was tied for eighth in the conference in games finished (18). Green had a 4.26 ERA with two wins, and held opponents to a .256 batting average (second on the team). He walked just 12 during the season with 38 strikeouts. Green pitched a career-high seven innings against 10th-ranked Indiana after entering in the eighth inning, allowing one unearned run on three hits with a career-high nine strikeouts, earning him Utah's first-ever Pac-12 Pitcher of the Week honor. He earned the win in Utah's 13-inning victory over USC, pitching five shutout innings with four strikeouts. Green also got a extra-inning win at Washington State, entering in the ninth and pitching 4 2/3 shutout innings with five strikeouts. He earned the save in Utah's win over UCLA.
Over four years, Green had eight career saves and four career wins with a 3.94 earned run average, pitching in 70 games. He had 86 career strikeouts.
"This is unbelievable," Green said. "I'm honestly speechless. I never thought I would have gotten the opportunity to continue playing baseball. I thought playing in college was going to be a fun way to pass four years, and now I'm here. I'm going to miss the camaraderie of everyone at Utah. Our team is something else - I've never been a part of a group of guys so close. Everyone is there for everyone else."
The draft continues on Saturday, May 7, with rounds 11-40.