RedHawk Trio Selected in MLB Draft

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June 7, 2018

The Miami baseball team put forth its largest draft class since 2007 when juniors Zach Spears, Nick Ernst and Hayden Senger were all selected in this week's Major League Baseball Draft.

Spears was the first off of the board when he was selected in the eighth round (#234 overall) by the Pittsburgh Pirates. The 6-foot-7 lefty has been a staple in the Red & White's weekend rotation the past three years, earning a total of 42 starts. Spears has amassed 212 innings pitched with 216 strikeouts. He set new career bests this season in ERA (3.73), innings pitched (82.0), strikeouts (88) and opponent batting average (.264). Spears is Miami's highest draft pick since 2007, when right-handed pitcher Connor Graham was taken in the fifth round by the Colorado Rockies.

Ernst was the next RedHawk taken when the New York Yankees called his name in the 15th round (#457 overall). His 2018 season was cut short when an injury in his second start sidelined him for the year. Ernst was poised to be the Red & White's Friday starter this season prior to the injury after appearing almost exclusively out of the bullpen the prior two seasons. In minimal work this year, Ernst posted a 1.00 ERA in nine innings tossed with a .191 opponent average. He dazzled on opening day, leading Miami to a 4-2 win over Arizona State behind a performance that featured six innings of work with just one run and four hits allowed and six strikeouts. Over the past three years combined, he has posted a record of 7-3 with an ERA of 2.91 while totaling 102 innings with 90 strikeouts.

Senger, a First-Team All-MAC and an All-MAC Defensive Team pick this season, was selected by the New York Mets in the 24th round (#710 overall) after hitting a team-best .344 this season with 32 runs scored, 34 RBI, 17 doubles, two triples and three home runs. Defensively, Senger was superb, recording just one error all season and just two total the last two years.

The last time Miami had three selections in a single draft was in 2007 when John Ely (Round 3), Graham (Round 5) and Josh Hula (Round 30) were all taken. 2004 was the last time it had more than three.