The 2019 MLB Draft class was a school record setting group for IU as ten Hoosiers were selected, besting the school’s previous record of seven in 2009.
IU’s Matt Gorski, Andrew Saalfrank, Tanner Gordon, Matt Lloyd, Pauly Milto, Scotty Bradley, Cam Beauchamp, Cole Barr, Elijah Dunham and Cade Bunnell all heard their names called during the 2019 MLB Draft.
Gorski was selected in the second round, 57th overall, by the Pittsburgh Pirates. His selection marked the highest by an IU player since Kyle Schwarber went fourth overall in 2014. Should Gorski make it to the AAA level with the Pirates, he would get the chance to return to Indiana to play for the Indianapolis Indians. In his three year career with IU, Gorski hit .306 with 24 home runs, 108 RBIs and 57 stolen bases.
2019 Big Ten Pitcher of the Year Andrew Saalfrank was selected in the sixth round, 182nd overall to the Arizona Diamondbacks. He enjoyed a breakout 2019 season with a 2.84 ERA, 8-1 record and 98 strikeouts over 73 innings which propelled him into the second day of the draft. Saalfrank set a school record with 13 strikeouts in a Big Ten game as he went on to go undefeated in conference games.
Just one year ago, Tanner Gordon had never thrown a pitch at a Division I level. He transferred to IU from John A. Logan College, and struggled at first allowing five runs in two of first four games. But an eight inning, 10 strikeout performance against Canisius turned his season around. That turnaround led to Gordon being selected in the sixth round, 187th overall by the Atlanta Braves. Gordon’s had a 3.39 ERA with 90 strikeouts over 85 innings in his first year in Bloomington.
Gorski, Saalfrank and Gordon do have one year of college eligibility remaining and thus the ability to return to school should they choose not to sign with their respective MLB team. Though as top six round draft picks, the expectation is they will not return.
IU’s senior two-way player Matt Lloyd was selected in the 15th round, 444th overall by the Cincinnati Reds. The Reds listed Lloyd as a first baseman on their draft card. Lloyd was named to the All-Big Ten First Team after a season senior where he hit .277 with 17 home runs and 58 RBIs. He also pitched to a 1.80 ERA with five saves in 2019.
For his career, Lloyd is a .283 hitter with 37 home runs and 145 RBIs. He started at least 50 games in each of the last three seasons. As a pitcher, Lloyd has made 48 appearances and has a career ERA of 1.91. He has saved 21 games and struck out 59 batters over 70.2 innings. He allowed 15 total runs in his career.
Milto went to the Chicago White Sox in the 23rd round, 680th overall. As a senior, Milto pitched in the Friday role for the Hoosiers. He finished his career with a 3.37 ERA, 26-12 record, 291.1 innings and 258 strikeouts.
The five other drafted Hoosiers went in the final five rounds. Scotty Bradley was the highest drafted of the group in the 36th round and 1077th overall by the Toronto Blue Jays. He does have one year of eligibility remaining, though has already graduated.
Beauchamp was selected by the Phillies three picks after Bradley at 1080th overall. Beauchamp however was removed from the IU roster in the final weeks of the 2019 season.
Barr went to the Mariners in the 37th round, while both Dunham and Bunnell went in the 40th round. Barr and Dunham are both expected back to IU next season while Bunnell as a senior will not return whether or not he signs.
With this draft class, IU could potentially lose five starters as well as its entire weekend rotation should the draftees all sign with their teams.