Recap and Reaction: Seven Current Tigers, Five Signees Selected in MLB Draft

June 7, 2018 By Taylor Jones

Regional Champs
Auburn vs NC State during the NCAA Baseball Regionals on Sunday, June 3, 2018, in Raleigh, NC.
Photo: Wade Rackley /Auburn Athletics

Following Casey Mize’s selection on Monday night by the Detroit Tigers, six more Tigers were drafted by Major League Baseball clubs on Wednesday, in addition to five signees. Seven current players drafted is the second highest in program history

Junior Casey Mize became the first ever Auburn Tiger to be selected first overall in the MLB Draft on Monday night. After a near-quiet Tuesday, six current players heard their names called during the final day of the Major League Baseball draft on Wednesday, as well as four signees.

CURRENT TIGERS

Casey Mize (32)Auburn baseball vs LSU on Friday, May 18, 2018, in Auburn, Ala.Photo: Wade Rackley /Auburn Athletics

CASEY MIZE- RHP- JR- SPRINGVILLE, ALABAMA

ROUND 1, PICK 1 OF THE DETROIT TIGERS

We knew that it was coming, but we still got chills when we heard that Casey Mize, one of the best athletes to ever call the Plains home, was selected first overall by the Detroit Tigers. In a room surrounded by his teammates, family, and coaches, Mize watched the big screen located in the Auburn Athletics Complex as the Commissioner of Major League Baseball, Rob Manfred, called his name. He immediately stood up and hugged his parents, who were sitting on either side of him.

Following the announcement of his name, and the brief interview that was conducted from the MLB Network, Mize stood before the most important people in his life, and thanked them for helping him get to where he is today.

That is a sign of a “true Auburn man.”

With Mize being selected number one, there’s a 99.9999999% chance that the 2018 season will be his last in an Auburn uniform. The Detroit Tigers had $8,096,300 of pick value to use on their first selection. Will Mize get all of that? No clue. But he is expected to receive a hefty paycheck very soon.

Davis Daniel (13).
Auburn baseball vs Brigham Young on Saturday, March 3, 2018, in Auburn, Ala.
Dakota Sumpter/Auburn Athletics

DAVIS DANIEL- RHP- SOPH.- MONTGOMERY, ALABAMA

ROUND 11, PICK 335 OF THE MILWAUKEE BREWERS

The first Auburn Tiger taken on the third day of the MLB Draft was pitcher, Davis Daniel. Daniel, who began his career at Auburn as a weekend starter, but was ultimately used as a bullpen arm towards the end of the 2018 regular season.

According to Matthew Stevens of the Montgomery Advertiser, there is no word on if Daniel will entertain the offer by the Brewers at this point.

Brendan Venter (8) hits a 2-run homer in the first inning.
Auburn Baseball vs Northeastern on Friday, March 9, 2018 in Auburn, Ala.
Anthony Hall/Auburn Athletics

BRENDAN VENTER- IF- JR.- FLOWER MOUND, TEXAS

ROUND 13, PICK 382 OF THE ATLANTA BRAVES

The 2018 Auburn Tigers had a healthy mix of veterans, freshmen, and junior college transfers in the lineup throughout the season. Brendan Venter had more than his fair share of contributions to the club this season.

A native of Flower Mound, Texas, and a transplant from McLennan Junior College in Waco, Venter is an active member of the double-digit home run club. In 63 games, Venter has hit 12 home runs and has driven in 45 RBI.

Venter’s decision is expected to be made in the coming days.

Andrew Mitchell (12)Auburn baseball vs LSU on Saturday, May 19, 2018, in Auburn, Ala.Photo: Wade Rackley /Auburn Athletics

ANDREW MITCHELL- LHP- SR.- NEW ORLEANS, LOUISIANA

ROUND 14, PICK 410 OF THE NEW YORK METS

Since earning a regular spot as the “game three” weekend starting pitcher for the Tigers, senior Andrew Mitchell has been lights out. In 9 starts, Mitchell has struck out a career-best 54 batters in 46 innings.

Mitchell also has an incredible backstory. He signed with the hometown LSU Tigers out of high school but was cut from the team. He then went to junior college in New Orleans, before finding a home in Auburn. In his final regular-season start at Plainsman Park, Mitchell struck out nine batters over seven innings in a 14-5 win over… LSU.

 

Calvin Coker (23).
Auburn Baseball vs UAB on Tuesday, April 17, 2018, in Auburn, Ala.
Dakota Sumpter / Auburn Athletics

CALVIN COKER- RHP- SR.- RANGER, TEXAS

ROUND 15, PICK 443 OF THE OAKLAND ATHLETICS

One of the more hard-throwing bullpen arms over the last two seasons has been Calvin Coker. Another junior college transfer, Coker has struck out 95 batters and has a 4.31 ERA in two seasons.

Luke Jarvis (9)
Auburn baseball vs LSU on Saturday, May 19, 2018, in Auburn, Ala.
Photo: Wade Rackley /Auburn Athletics

LUKE JARVIS- IF- SR.- SAN DIEGO, CALIFORNIA

ROUND 25, PICK 747 OF THE MIAMI MARLINS

When Tiger fans think of Luke Jarvis, the word “defense” is usually the first word to pop into their minds. After a stint at Saddleback Community College in California, Jarvis has made the most of his two seasons on the Plains. A battle with back spasms late in 2017 only allowed him to make 48 starts, but he has bounced back and has formed one of the toughest middle-infield duos in college baseball with shortstop Will Holland. In 2018, Jarvis has a fielding percentage of .977 with only five errors.

Brett Wright (22) Auburn baseball Photo: Wade Rackley /Auburn Athletics

BRETT WRIGHT- C- JR.- NEW CANEY, TEXAS

ROUND 26, PICK 776 OF THE TORONTO BLUE JAYS

The final Tiger on the current roster that was taken on Wednesday was Brett Wright. Wright is another JUCO product to make an immediate impact with Auburn, joining the likes of Brendan Venter, Will Holland, Steven Williams, and Edouard Julien as those players with at least 10 home runs. Wright has smashed 11 long balls and has recorded 45 RBI.

More information on Wright’s decision is expected to be announced soon.

 

SIGNEES

Ryan Bliss of Troup High School in LaGrange, Georgia signs with Auburn Baseball Photo: Kevin Eckleberry/ LaGrange Daily News

RYAN BLISS- TROUP HIGH SCHOOL- LAGRANGE, GEORGIA

ROUND 30, PICK 910 OF THE BOSTON RED SOX

Ryan Bliss has been committed to Auburn for a while now. He was one of five signees that were also drafted this week and could make a quick impact in the Auburn infield over the next few seasons.

Good news for Auburn fans, as Bliss made his decision on his future before he was even drafted by the Red Sox.

Blake Rivera Photo: Wallace State CC

BLAKE RIVERA- RHP- SMITHS STATION, ALABAMA

ROUND 4, PICK 106 OF THE SAN FRANSISCO GIANTS

The San Francisco Giants have their mind made up, they really want Blake Rivera to join the club.

Last season, Rivera turned down the 32nd round pick by the Giants to return to Wallace State Community College in Hanceville. He has signed with Auburn, but with the 106th pick slotted as earning just over $500k, it seems as if the reigning Alabama Community College Conference pitcher of the year has some thinking to do. He is known to have a killer curveball and is not the only former Wallace State pitcher to catch the eye of the MLB scouts.

Kason Howell Photo: AuburnTigers.com

KASON HOWELL- OF- ARGYLE, TEXAS

ROUND 20, PICK 610 OF THE BOSTON RED SOX

Howell hits for average and has a nice set of wheels. His senior year stats at Liberty Christian High School in Argyle, Texas were astonishing. He hit .462 with 39 RBI and 40 stolen bases. According to an article by the Denton Record-Chronicle, Howell was on a tractor when he heard the news that he was drafted by the Red Sox.

Howell will make a decision regarding his future soon.

Devin Warner Photo: AuburnTigers.com

DEVIN WARNER- IF- CARTERSVILLE, GEORGIA

ROUND 30, PICK 909 TO THE ARIZONA DIAMONDBACKS

The second pick of the 2018 MLB Draft from Cartersville High School, just north of Atlanta, is Devin Warner. Warner’s teammate, Anthony Seigler, was taken 23rd overall by the New York Yankees on Monday. An interesting note about Warner’s selection is that he was taken one pick prior than fellow Auburn signee, Ryan Bliss. The two played together for the East Cobb Yankees, and are expected to be roommates at Auburn, according to Nicholas Sullivan of the Daily Tribune in Bartow County, Georgia.

Sullivan also confirmed that Warner will be enrolling at Auburn, and will play for Coach Butch Thompson.

Garrett Wade Photo: Decatur Daily

GARRETT WADE- LHP- HARTSELLE, ALABAMA

ROUND 38, PICK 1140 OF THE TAMPA BAY RAYS

The Gatorade High School Player of the Year for Alabama has signed with Auburn, and it looks like it will stay that way. The Hartselle native took to Twitter on Wednesday to announce that he is looking forward to pitching at Auburn for the next 3-4 years.

The fact that Wade is staying is huge for Auburn. He finished his senior season with a 0.90 ERA with 109 strikeouts, and his fastball clocking in between 90-93 miles per hour. He will join an already young, impressive pitching staff consisting of Cody Greenhill and Tanner Burns, among others.

Stay tuned, as this post will be continually updated.