JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - Jacksonville University junior RHP Alex McRae (West Allis, Wis.) continued a strong tradition at JU on Friday night. McRae became the program's 80th Major League Baseball draft pick when he was selected in the 10th round by the Pittsburgh Pirates at No. 311 overall.
"I couldn't believe it," said McRae of his initial reaction to getting the call. "I didn't think it was going to happen today but I got the call and I was shocked. I didn't know how to react and I just gave everyone a huge hug and I'm still in shock about everything. It's a dream come true."
Rated as the fourth best draft pick in the Atlantic Sun by Baseball America at the start of the season, McRae was at times dominate this year as he posted a career high five wins and 69 strikeouts. He was named the A-Sun Pitcher of the Week in March after tossing a complete game four hit shutout in a win over Winthrop on March 1 that included a career high 11 strikeouts.
He made 15 starts in 16 appearances in 2014 picking up a save with two scoreless innings in a 3-1 JU win at #6 Florida on April 22.
McRae picked up a second A-Sun Pitcher of the Week award in May with a complete game two-hitter in a win over Stetson on May 3. He held a no-hitter thru the first six innings against the Hatters and stayed in control throughout ending the night striking out seven batters and walking just one while throwing 113 pitches.
"I'm happy for Alex and his family this is a great day not only for Alex but for Jacksonville University baseball," said Head Coach Tim Montez. "Alex has worked hard since coming in as a freshman undrafted out of high school and making himself a top 10 round draft pick. He handled himself with the upmost class and integrity over the last three years on and off the field and I'm sure by the time it's all said and done he will also come back to finish his degree."
A recent scouting report from the website Perfect Game USA classified McRae as having developed into a polished college product. Perfect Game stated that his fastball works in the low-90s and still has some projection in it due to his lean and lanky build. McRae's slider has improved tremendously during his three years and is now a potential swing-and-miss pitch. He also throws a curveball and a changeup.
No stranger to the success in the MLB draft, former Jacksonville ace Chris Anderson was a first round pick last season when the LA Dodgers made him the No. 18 overall selection.
McRae is the 17th Dolphin taken in the top 10 rounds of the MLB draft and the 18th highest pick. MLB first instituted the draft in 1965.