June 7, 2014
HOUSTON - Houston Baseball made noise on the final day of the 2014 MLB First-Year Player Draft as five Cougars were selected on the third and final day of the event Saturday.
The five selected were senior Casey Grayson (Cypress, Texas) going in the 20th round (No. 645) by the St. Louis Cardinals, senior Tyler Ford (Richmond, Texas) going in the 27th round (No. 820) by the Detroit Tigers, junior Aaron Garza (Galveston, Texas) going in the 29th round (No. 866) by the Milwaukee Brewers, sophomore Jared West (Frierson, La.) going in the 32nd round (No. 968) by the Cleveland Indians and senior Chase Wellbrock (Brenham, Texas) going in the 33rd round (No. 984) by the Toronto Blue Jays.
2014 marked the first year that at least five were selected in the MLB First-Year Player Draft as four were selected a year ago.
Of the five Cougars selected, four are hurlers on one of the nation's top pitching staffs, while Grayson was the lone position player taken.
This year also marked the 13th straight season a Cougar was drafted and the five has now brought the program total to 136 drafted since 1968.
HOUSTON BASEBALL at the 2014 MLB FIRST-YEAR PLAYER DRAFT
1B - Casey Grayson - 21st round (No. 645) - St. Louis Cardinals
Grayson was the only Cougar to start and play in all 66 games this season and led the team in average (.321), hits (78), doubles (16), RBI (48) and walks (52). He slugged .469 and fielded .995 in his final year at Houston. Grayson was a member of the American Athletic Conference Second Team.
LHP - Tyler Ford - 27th round (No. 820) - Detroit Tigers
Ford will finish as one of the nation's top relievers this season, compiling a 9-0 record with four saves in a team-leading 27 appearances and 69.0 innings out of the pen. He finished with a 1.17 ERA and held opponents to a .192 average. The lefty struck out 49 and walked just five on the year.
RHP - Aaron Garza - 29h round (No. 866) - Milwaukee Brewers
Garza led the pitching staff in wins with nine, compiling a 9-5 record and a 2.92 ERA in 17 starts. He led all pitchers with 108.0 innings logged, while walking just 11, while striking out 57. He went on to throw two complete games. Garza was a member of the American Athletic Conference Second Team.
LHP - Jared West - 32nd round (No. 968) - Cleveland Indians
West saw action as both a starter and reliever in 2014 for the Cougars, compiling a record of 2-2 in 14 appearances and 10 starts. He finished with a 2.90 ERA and struck out 39 in 49.2 innings, holding opponents to a .211 average.
RHP - Chase Wellbrock - 33rd (No. 984) - Toronto Blue Jays
Wellbrock finished his career as the Houston all-time saves leader and will remain atop the pitching records as he was 5-0 with 12 saves and a 1.17 ERA in his fourth and final season as a Cougar. He finished with 24 career saves and became the first Cougar to post back-to-back 10+ save years. In 23 appearances and 46.1 innings, he walked just five and struck out 37, holding opponents to a .233 average. Wellbrock was a member of the American Athletic Conference Second Team.
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