Five Kansas University baseball players were selected by major-league organizations in the second day of the Major League Baseball first-year player draft. Left-handed pitcher Sam Freeman (St. Louis), outfielder Ryne Price (San Francisco), left-handed pitcher Nick Czyz (Seattle), right-handed pitcher Andres Esquibel (Seattle) and shortstop Erik Morrison (Texas) were selected Friday.
Freeman, who was taken by the Cardinals in the 32nd round (pick No. 965), went 4-1 with an 8.53 ERA in 13 appearances this season. The Kansas junior won three of his first four starts, including a 6-2 decision at Texas on March 16. Freeman started his collegiate baseball career at North Central Texas College, where he played two seasons before transferring to KU. He was previously selected by the Cardinals in the 23rd round of the 2007 draft.
Price, who was selected by the Giants in the 33rd round (pick No. 987), was a four-year starter who finished his KU career with a school-record 35 home runs and 155 RBIs.
Czyz was taken by the Mariners in the 35th round (pick No. 1,062). The left-hander made a team-high 13 starts for the Jayhawks this season and complied a 2-7 mark with a 6.12 ERA. Czyz struck out 59 in 642â3 innings and pitched the team to victories over North Dakota State and Texas Tech. Czyz is tied for ninth in KU history for most games started.
Esquibel was also selected by the Mariners in the 38th round (pick No. 1,152). He transferred to KU following one season at Palomar (Calif.) Community College and was 10-7 in his Kansas career.
Morrison was taken in the 46th round by the Rangers (pick No. 1,380). The Kansas shortstop was drafted by the Pittsburgh Pirates last season, but elected to return to KU for his senior campaign. He completed his Jayhawk years with a .279 average, 31 home runs and 171 RBIs.
The Jayhawks also had two incoming freshmen drafted on Day Two: infielder Zac Elgie (Oakland Athletics, round 12) and pitcher Lee Ridenhour (Minnesota Twins, round 31).