TROY, Ala. – Troy’s middle of the lineup combination of Logan Pierce, Danny Collins and Trae Santos all heard their names called on Saturday during the 2013 MLB First Year Player Draft. It marks the first time since 2007 that three Troy players were selected in the same draft class.
Collins, a junior, was selected by the Pittsburgh Pirates in the 13th round (389th overall pick), the Philadelphia Phillies selected Pierce, a senior, with their 15th round pick (451st overall pick), while Santos, a junior, was selected by the San Diego Padres in the 17th round (508th overall pick).
The trio helped lead Troy to its second Sun Belt Conference championship in the past three seasons and the school’s sixth appearance in the NCAA Tournament as a Division I member. The Trojans defeated Alabama twice in the Tallahassee Regional to advance to the regional final against Florida State.
Collins was named to the Louisville Slugger All-America First Team last week and was a semifinalist for both the Golden Spikes Award and the Dick Howser Trophy. The Niceville, Fla., native hit .360 with 25 doubles, three triples, 11 home runs, 68 RBIs, a .631 slugging percentage, .452 on-base percentage and a 1.083 OPS.
He ranks fifth in the country in doubles, eighth in RBIs and 17th in total bases. Collins also ranks among the top 100 in the NCAA in batting average, runs, hits, home runs and slugging percentage. He is the first Troy player drafted by the Pittsburgh Pirates since Mike Felix (second round) and Jared Keel (31st round) were selected by the organization in 2006.
Pierce, who was a Louisville Slugger All-America Third Team selection, finished the season leading the Trojans with a .364 batting average, .467 on-base percentage and 46 walks. The Troy, Ala., native added 24 doubles, eight home runs and 63 RBIs from the two hole in the lineup.
His walk total ranks 21st nationally while his on-base percentage ranks 40th and his 24 doubles are the 11th most in the NCAA. Pierce finishes his career tied for the first in Troy history with 125 career walks while ranking second with 55 career doubles, third with 213 career hits and fifth with 153 career RBIs. Pierce is the first Trojan to be selected by Philadelphia in the MLB Draft.
Santos is one of the nation’s top home run hitters after he sent 18 balls out of the park in his first season with the Trojans. Only San Diego’s Kris Bryant (No. 2 overall pick by Chicago Cubs) and Elon’s Ryan Kinsella hit more. The Barrigada, Guam, native was named to the Tallahassee Regional All-Tournament Team after batting .455 (5-for-11) with a pair of home runs in four RBIs in Troy’s four games.
He drove in a team-leading 70 RBIs, which ranked as the sixth most in the NCAA this season and the third most in a season in Troy history. Santos’ 18 home runs rank eighth on the Troy single-season list, but are the most in the BBCOR bat era. Santos is the first Trojan since Tom King (eighth round) to be selected by the Padres since 2006.
Players have until 4 p.m. on July 12 to sign their contract.
Courtesy: Adam Predergrast, Troy Athletics