Final day sees MSU finish with 11 draftees


Ben Portnoy



STARKVILLE -- Three days of sitting, hoping and praying is over.


In all, 11 Mississippi State baseball players and four signees were selected in the Major League Baseball First-Year Player draft that concluded Wednesday afternoon.


"It's the only practice of the year when guys get to run around with their cell phones in their pockets," MSU coach Chris Lemonis said Wednesday.



Following the selections of redshirt junior Ethan Small (first round, Milwaukee Brewers), senior Jake Mangum (fourth round, New York Mets), and junior Colby White (sixth round, Tampa Bay Rays), eight current MSU players were chosen in the final 29 rounds on day three of the annual event.


The Colorado Rockies selected redshirt junior pitcher Trysten Barlow in the 16th round. Colorado also drafted redshirt junior Keegan James (25th round) and sophomore Tanner Allen (34th round).


A source close to the situation confirmed to The Dispatch that Allen will return to school next year.


Senior reliever Cole Gordon will join Mangum as a part of the Mets' organization. Gordon was taken in the 32nd round.


Other MSU players chosen Wednesday were: junior Dustin Skelton (18th round, Miami Marlins) and seniors Jared Liebelt (20th round, Arizona Diamondbacks), Marshall Gilbert (29th round, Pittsburgh Pirates), and Peyton Plumlee (31st round, Houston Astros)


Barlow and James already have their degrees -- making them likely candidates to leave school early, though an official announcement hasn't been made.


White also confirmed to The Dispatch he will sign with Tampa Bay, forgoing his final year of eligibility.


Rounding out the MSU contingent were four high school signees. The Chicago Cubs took catcher Ethan Hearn on Tuesday in the draft's sixth round. Pitcher Isaiah Johnson (14th round, Atlanta Braves) and outfielders Jake Randa (13th round, Washington Nationals) and Andre Tarver (15th round, San Diego Padres) were selected on day three.


The 11 players drafted matches a MSU single-season record. One hundred fifty-nine Bulldogs have been selected in the MLB draft dating back to 1965.



Ben Portnoy reports on Mississippi State sports for The Dispatch. Follow him on Twitter at @bportnoy15.


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