CLEVELAND — Major League Baseball's All-Star Week is here, and with it so is the 2021 MLB Draft. The Tribe is adding talent to its ranks, selecting from a pool of prospects at both the high school and college level.
Here's a look at who the Tribe has selected throughout the Draft taking place in Denver:
With the 23rd overall pick, Cleveland selected right-handed pitcher Gavin Williams, 21, from East Carolina University. Williams finished among the overall NCAA leaders in the 2021 season in strikeouts per 9 innings pitched (5th), ERA (11th), strikeouts (11th) and wins (11th).
With the 58th overall pick in the second round of the 2021 MLB Draft, Cleveland added another arm to the arsenal, this time selecting left-handed pitcher Doug Nikhazy out of the University of Mississippi.
The 21-year-old notched a 12-2 record and a 2.45 ERA with 142 strikeouts in his 16 games with 15 starts this spring. Nikhazy earned near consensus All-American honors and set a school record for single-season wins and finished second in program history for single-season strikeouts.
Over his college career, Nikhazy posted a 24-6 record with a 2.81 ERA in 40 games with 259 strikeouts in 204.2 innings pitched.
Competitive balance round B
With the 69th overall pick, the picks awarded to the eligible 10 lowest-revenue clubs and the clubs from the 10 smallest markets, Cleveland selected right-handed pitcher Tommy Mace from the University of Florida.
Mace, 22, wrapped up his collegiate careers with a 22-7 record and a 4.37 ERA in 62 games ad 41 starts with 258 strikeouts. This spring, Mace notched a 4.38 ERA in 15 starts. MLB Pipeline has Fox ranked as the 198th draft prospect.
With the 95th overall pick, Cleveland selected shortstop and University of Florida commit Jake Fox from Lakeland Christian High School.
According to Perfect Game, the 18-year-old was ranked 111th overall nationally and 11th overall in Florida. At his position, Fox was ranked 32nd nationally and 3rd in Florida.
With the 125th overall pick, the Tribe selected left-handed pitcher Ryan Webb out of the University of Georgia.
The senior Bulldog finished the 2021 season with a 3-4 record and a 3.32 ERA in 11 starts, posting a team-high 82 strikeouts and just 17 walks in 59.2 innings pitched. His season ended in May after suffering an elbow injury that required surgery. Over his collegiate career, Webb notched a 7-9 record with a 3.60 ERA and six saves in 55 appearances, 18 of which were starts, as well as 183 strikeouts in 152.2 innings.
Webb was ranked No. 127 on Baseball America's "Top 400 Prospects for the 2021 MLB Draft."
With the 156th overall pick, Cleveland selected right-handed pitcher Tanner Bibee out of Cal State Fullerton. Bibee appeared in 16 games this season with 14 starts, posting a 6-6 record and a 3.61 ERA with 67 strikeouts in 89.2 innings pitched.
With the 186th overall pick, the Tribe selected right-handed pitcher Aaron Davenport out of Hawaii. Davenport had an impressive 2020 season, going 4-0 with a 2.15 ERA in five games during the season shortened by COVID-19. He opened the 2021 season strong and over 13 games posted a 3-6 record with a 3.74 ERA with 97 strikeouts in 86.2 innings pitched.
With the 216th overall pick, Cleveland selected another collegiate pitcher, this time right-hander Jack Leftwich out of the University of Florida.
Leftwich finished the 2021 season with a 7-4 record with five saves during his 24 appearances on the mound for the Gators. He posted a 3.36 ERA and .208 batting average against (BAA) with 78 strikeouts while allowing 54 hits. Leftwich was ranked No. 86 on Baseball America's Preseason Top 150 Players list.
With the 246th overall pick, the Tribe selected their eighth collegiate pitcher of the 2021 MLB Draft, left-handed pitcher Rodney Boone out of UC Santa Barbara.
Boone, who is from the same school that Tribe ace and All-Star Shane Bieber was selected out of, posted an 11-4 record last season with a 2.31 ERA in 16 games. In 97.1 innings pitched, Boone recorded 128 strikeouts and allowed 55 hits with 39 walks.
The Tribe loves their collegiate pitchers and added their ninth of the 2021 MLB Draft by selecting left-hander Will Dion out of McNeese State.
Last season, Dion posted a 9-4 record and 3.07 ERA in his 17 appearances, 16 of which were starts. Through 99.2 innings pitched, Dion notched a school-record 121 strikeouts and gave up 79 hits with 19 walks in the 2021 season.
Dion was named the 2021 Southland Conference Pitcher of the Year and was one of Collegiate Baseball’s National Players of the Week last season after recording 19 strikeouts in a game against Prairie View.
If you haven't picked up on the pattern from the first two days of the draft, let this be your final reminder—the Tribe is placing high value on collegiate pitchers.
With the 306th overall pick, Cleveland selected right-handed pitcher Franco Aleman out of the University of Florida.
Last season with the Gators, Aleman finished with a 2-4 record and 5.74 ERA with four saves over 69 innings pitched. In his 23 appearances, nine of which were starts, Aleman recorded 65 strikeouts and walked 21 batters with a .274 BAA.
Aleman played at St. Johns River State College prior to pitching for the Gators.
On the final day of the 2021 MLB Draft, Cleveland continued its streak of adding pitchers to the organization, selecting right-hander Hunter Stanley out of Southern Mississippi with the 336th overall pick.
Stanley notched a 6-4 record with a 2.56 ERA and 127 strikeouts in his 16 appearances with 15 starts this season. Over three seasons with Southern Miss, Stanley went 13-6 with a 2.60 ERA and 185 strikeouts in 155.2 innings pitched.
Tribe fans following along with the draft and hoping for an outfielder got their wish granted in the 12th round as the Tribe selected Connor Kokx out of Long Beach State with the 366th overall pick.
Kokx, a 2021 Collegiate Baseball Freshman All-American, led his team batting .366 with an on-base percentage of .481 while recording 37 runs, 59 hits, being walked 24 times, was hit by pitches 16 times and stole 14 bases.
In addition to leading his team in the aforementioned areas, Kokx also boasted a perfect 1.000 fielding percentage in 2021.
Getting back to pitching, Cleveland selected right-hander Davis Sharpe from Clemson University with the 396th overall pick.
Sharpe, however, was a two-way player at Clemson, spending time at first base, designated hitter and on the mound.
As a pitcher, Sharpe went 4-1 and had a 5.50 ERA in 10 appearances with six starts this season. At the plate, Sharpe batted .211 with six doubles, three home runs and 12 RBI. During his time at Clemson, Sharpe has slashed .256/.369/.424 with a 12-6 record and a 3.89 ERA. He was drafted in the 34th round of the 2018 Draft by Pittsburgh but didn't sign.
With the 426th overall pick, Cleveland selected right-handed pitcher Trenton Denholm out of UC Irvine.
This past season, Denholm finished with a 6-2 record and a 4.61 ERA with 70 strikeouts over 82 innings pitched, and finished his collegiate career with a 3.44 ERA, a 21-6 record and 236 strikeouts.
Over two summers in the Cape Cod League, Denholm did not allow a single earned run, throwing 32.1 scoreless innings.
MLB.com noted that should Denholm work on his breaking ball and control, he has the potential to be a back-end starting pitcher.
With the 456th overall pick, the Tribe picked another pitcher, this time right-hander Alaska Abney out of Coastal Carolina University.
Abney appeared in 22 games with three starts this past season, posting a 3-2 record and 4.99 ERA with five saves, 68 strikeouts and a .250 BAA over 48.2 innings pitched.
The Tribe used their 486th overall pick to select right-handed pitcher Zach Pettway out of UCLA.
During his four years at UCLA, Pettway notched a 16-11 record with a 3.77 ERA in 45 games with 43 starts, recording 241 strikeouts over 264.2 innings pitched. In his four starts last spring before the season was shutdown, Pettway had a 1.40 ERA and was named D1Baseball's Pac-12 Pitcher of the Year.
With the 516th overall pick, Cleveland selected right-handed pitcher Tyler Thronton from Arizona State.
This past season, Thornton went 2-4 with a 5.54 ERA over 16 games with 14 starts. Over his three years at both St. Mary's and ASU, Thornton posted a 4.02 ERA and was named Collegiate Baseball's National Freshman of the Year in 2019.
The pattern of drafting pitchers doesn't end here as the Tribe selected right-hander Tommy Ventmiglia, a senior at Longwood High School in New York, with the 546th overall pick.
Ventmiglia, a 17-year-old Stony Brook commit, posted a 4-2 record in 2021 with a 1.22 ERA, 42 strikeouts and a .190 BAA through 28.2 innings pitched in 2021.
Back to the collegiate level, Cleveland selected Reid Johnston out of NC State with the 576th overall pick.
Johnston notched a 9-3 record in the 2021 season with a 4.47 ERA and 96 strikeouts over 16 games with 12 starts. Since 2018, Johnston has recorded a 3.93 ERA with 227 strikeouts across 58 games with 38 starts.
In the 2019 Cape Cod League, Johnston posted a 1.82 ERA over 24.2 innings pitched.
With the final pick of the day, wrapping up the 2021 MLB Draft for Cleveland, the Tribe selected—you guessed it—a pitcher, this time right-hander Jake Miller out of the University of San Diego.
The 606th overall pick recorded a 9-7 mark with a 3.14 ERA over his time at San Diego with 151 strikeouts over 132 innings pitched.
This past season, Miller went 6-2 with a 2.52 ERA in 12 starts with 77 strikeouts. In 2020, Miller threw a no-hitter against Monmouth.
At the end of the three-day draft, Cleveland selected 19 pitchers, one high school infielder and a collegiate outfielder.
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