The Cincinnati Reds picked three pitchers in the five rounds of the Major League Baseball draft last week and have added seven more arms through the signing of undrafted free agents.
» DRAFT SUMMARY: What to know about Reds’ picks
With the draft shortened from 40 rounds to five this year because of the coronavirus pandemic, teams have added other players through the free-agent market, which opened at 9 a.m. Sunday.
Stevie Branche, right-handed pitcher, Rochester Institute of Technology: He was 5-2 with a 2.03 ERA in 11 starts as a junior in 2019. He’s from New Paltz, N.Y.
Branche told the Poughkeepsie Journal he had offers from the Giants and Reds.
“It’s something I’ve wanted since I started playing baseball and I’ve worked really hard to get myself in this position,” he said. “I’m super grateful for the opportunity.”
Jacob Hurtubise, outfielder, Army: The Zionsville, Ind., native broke Army’s single-season records for runs (71), walks (69) and stolen bases (45) as a junior in 2019 and set Patriot League career records in walks (141) and stolen bases (141). Baseball American ranked him the 14th-best prospect among the undrafted free agents.
Tyler Keysor, right-handed pitcher, University of Miami: The Windermere, Fla. native posted a 5.87 ERA in eight appearances as a senior in 2020.
Brett Lockwood, right-handed pitcher, Kansas State: He posted a 0.00 ERA in five relief appearances as a senior in 2020 and a 4.80 ERA in 12 relief appearances last season. He’s from Temecula, Calif., and started his career at Palomar College.
Alex McGarry, infielder/outfielder, Oregon State: He hit .288 in 14 games in 2020 as a redshirt junior. In 2019, he hit .293 with eight home runs. He’s from Vancouver, Wash.
Leo Nierenberg, right-handed pitcher, Washington: He was 3-1 with a 6.84 ERA in 21 appearances as a junior. He did not allow an earned run in four relief appearances in 2020. He’s from Oakland, Calif.
James Proctor, right-handed pitcher, Princeton: The 6-foot-5 Proctor, who’s from St. Louis, Mo., ranks ninth in Princeton history in strikeouts per nine innings (8.7). He had 66 strikeouts in 50 1/3 innings and a 4.65 ERA as a junior in 2019.
» SCOUTING: Lakota East grad lands dream job with Reds
Braxton Roxby, right-handed pitcher, Pittsburgh-Johnstown: He was 1-2 with a 9.68 ERA in four starts in 2020. Last year, as a sophomore, he was 5-3 with a 4.95 ERA in 11 starts. He’s from Windber, Pa.
“Things obviously didn’t work out with the draft since it was knocked down to five rounds from 40,” Roxby told the Tribune Democrat. “Just because of the uncertainty, I decided to sign this year and basically just get on my feet as early as I can in professional baseball.”
Carson Spiers, right-handed pitcher, Clemson: Spiers is from Greenville, S.C., and was 3-0 with 0.00 ERA in nine relief appearances in 2020. A year ago as a junior, he was 2-5 with 11 saves and 3.59 ERA in 30 relief appearances. His dad, uncle and grandfather all also played at Clemson.
Francisco Urbaez, second baseman, Florida Atlantic: The Dominican Republic native hit .322 as a junior in 2019 and .292 in a 2020 season shortened by the COVID-19 crisis.
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