2016 HiTom MLB Draft Recap
Courtesy of Daniel Frye with HiToms Baseball
High Point/Thomasville, N.C. – Seven former High Point-Thomasville HiToms & HPT Post 87 HiToms were selected in the 2016 Major League Baseball draft this past weekend.
The earliest pick was infielder Nicky Lopez from Creighton who suited up for the HiToms just a year ago. Lopez went off of the board early in the fifth round to the Kansas City Royals with the 163rd overall pick. In 2015, Lopez led the HiToms in batting average (.327), hits (53), slugging (.519), and home runs (7). For Creighton this season, he hit .326 with 2 homers and 22 RBI’s and was the first Bluejay taken in the 2016 draft.
Braden Bristo and Mac Sceroler were two teammates of Lopez with the HiToms last year also selected. The Yankees drafted Bristo from Louisiana Tech in round 23 after making 14 starts for the Bulldogs this season and striking out 62 batters. Bristo was recruited to Louisiana Tech by current HiToms head coach Brian Rountree and he contributed in 2015 for HPT with 16 strikeouts in 5 appearances.
Sceroler is another right-handed pitcher from the state of Louisiana who pitched for the HiToms in 2015 and he was effective going 4-2 in eight starts while posting a 2.91 earned run average. He was taken in round 36 by the Phillies after a successful 2016 campaign with Southeastern Louisiana where he was named to the Southland All-1st team after leading the Lions in win with 10.
A couple American Legion Post 87 HiTom alumni were also featured in the 2016 MLB draft. Jared Gesell and Tyler Britton both went in round 23 and were only 17 selections away from each other. The two High Point natives went overall at 680 and 697 respectively. Gesell was picked by the Rockies as a relief pitcher who made 23 appearances late in games for UNC-Wilmington with a shutdown 2.27 ERA while piling up five saves.
Britton and Gesell were teammates on the Post 87 HiToms but also in high school at High Point Christian Academy. Britton, an Astros selection eventually stayed in High Point to pitch for the Panthers where he posted a 2.93 ERA, struck out 59 opponents and tallied a 6-1 record in 2016. Britton also made one appearance for the HiToms in 2013 recording four innings, only allowing one run and picked up two strikeouts.
A pair of 2014 High Point-Thomasville alumni will also give it a shot in pro ball after being drafted over the weekend. Weston Wilson, another High Point native went in round 17 to the Brewers. At Clemson in 2016, Wilson hit 7 homers and drove in 45 runs and with the HiToms he had similar success with 14 hits in only 15 games.
Matt Milburn from Wofford wrapped up his collegiate pitching career as the Southern Conference pitcher of the year and by being selected in round 29 by the Athletics. As a HiTom he posted a 2-1 record in 4 starts with 19 punch-outs.
For information on the 2016 MLB draft and HiToms selected, visit mlb.com.