LOS ANGELES – Nine UCLA baseball players have been selected on the second day of the 2010 MLB Draft. Five pitchers, headlined by second-round selection Rob Rasmussen and third-round draft pick Dan Klein, were chosen in the draft’s first 20 rounds. In all, six pitchers were drafted and three position players were selected from UCLA.
Rasmussen, a junior left-hander, was selected in the second round (73rd overall) by the Florida Marlins. Klein, a redshirt sophomore right-hander, was chosen in the third round (85th overall) by the Baltimore Orioles. Junior left-handed pitcher Matt Grace was drafted in the eighth round (236th overall) by the Washington Nationals.
Senior right-hander Garett Claypool was selected in the 11th round (351st overall) by the Philadelphia Phillies, and redshirt junior left-hander Matt Drummond was taken in the 20th round (598th overall) by the Baltimore Orioles.
Junior outfielder Chris Giovinazzo became the Bruins’ first position player selected in the 2010 MLB Draft, being chosen by the Colorado Rockies in the 21st round (650th overall).
Redshirt sophomore right-hander Erik Goeddel was drafted in the 24th round (722nd overall) by the New York Mets, and junior outfielder Brett Krill was taken in the 25th round (768th overall) by the San Francisco Giants. Junior infielder Niko Gallego was selected in the 27th round (811th overall) by the Arizona Diamondbacks.
Rasmussen becomes the Bruins’ earliest draft selection since 2006, when left-hander David Huff was drafted in the supplemental first round (39th overall) by the Cleveland Indians. Rasmussen is the first UCLA ballplayer drafted in the second round since 2007 (Brant Rustich, New York Mets).
Rasmussen and Klein become the seventh and eighth UCLA pitchers, respectively, to be chosen in the draft’s first five rounds under sixth-year head coach John Savage.
Rasmussen earned his 10th victory of the season Sunday, leading UCLA past UC Irvine, 6-2, by striking out seven batters in six innings to help the Bruins earn their second berth in the NCAA Super Regionals in the last four seasons. Rasmussen has gone 10-2 with a 2.90 ERA, totaling 108 strikeouts and 27 walks in 90.0 innings this spring.
After not earning a decision in his first three starts, Rasmussen collected the victory in each of his next six starts. In nine Pac-10 starts, the southpaw went 6-2 with a 3.04 ERA, tops among UCLA’s weekend starters. Rasmussen logged 54 strikeouts and eight walks in 53.1 innings in conference action.
Drafted by the Los Angeles Dodgers in the 27th round of the 2007 MLB Draft, Rasmussen pitched in nine games as a freshman (two starts), in a rookie campaign that was cut short due to a broken foot sustained from a line-drive comebacker in his debut. He missed 10 weeks before returning to the mound at the end of the season.
After going 4-2 with a 6.45 ERA in 18 games (six starts) as a sophomore, Rasmussen shined in the 2009 Cape Cod League, going 4-0 with a 1.80 ERA in 35.0 innings for the Orleans Firebirds. Rasmussen was selected as one of two starting pitchers in the Cape Cod League’s All-Star Game at Boston’s Fenway Park in July 2009.
Klein was drafted by the Baltimore Orioles for the second time in four seasons, having been chosen by Baltimore in the 24th round of the 2007 MLB Draft following his senior season at Servite High School.
Klein has gone 5-0 with nine saves, collecting 48 strikeouts and eight walks in 44.1 innings as the Bruins’ closer in 2010. The right-hander from Los Alamitos, Calif., was named to the Midseason Stopper of the Year Award’s watch list in April and is tied for second in the Pac-10 with 35 appearances and ranks third in the conference in saves.
Klein’s nine saves are the third most in a single season in school history, trailing Gabe Sollecito’s 12-save total in 1992 and Herb Fauland’s 10 saves in 1980. In two seasons, Klein has gone 7-2 with a 3.63 ERA, registering 61 strikeouts and 11 walks in 62.0 innings (42 appearances, two starts).
Klein missed the 2009 season with a shoulder injury. He returned in exceptional form in 2010, opening the season with a 20.1 consecutive inning scoreless streak as UCLA’s closer.
Grace has gone 0-1 with a 3.24 ERA in 33 appearances, all in relief, as a junior for the Bruins in 2010. The 6-foot-4 left-hander from Palos Verdes Estates, Calif., registered 20 strikeouts and seven walks in 25.0 innings during his junior campaign.
In three seasons at UCLA, Grace has gone 4-4 with a 3.95 ERA (69 appearances, six starts), totaling 72 strikeouts and 38 walks in 98.0 innings. Through NCAA Regional action this spring, Grace is tied for seventh in the Pac-10 with 30 appearances.
Claypool has shined as both a starting pitcher and reliever for the Bruins in 2010, going 8-3 with a 2.05 ERA, collecting 72 strikeouts and issuing just 19 walks in 79.0 innings. The senior right-hander from West Hills, Calif., has gone 14-7 with a 3.04 ERA, 179 strikeouts and 78 walks in 204.0 career innings (73 games, 33 starts).
Claypool was chosen in the 32nd round of the 2009 MLB Draft by the Oakland Athletics and returned to pitch for UCLA as a senior in 2010. The Bruins’ reliable midweek starter has gone 7-3 with a 2.27 ERA, registering 55 strikeouts and 17 walks in 67.1 innings as a starting pitcher this spring.
Drummond has gone 0-1 with a 5.23 ERA in 11 relief appearances for UCLA as a redshirt junior in 2010. He has notched eight strikeouts and eight walks in 10.1 innings, returning after having missed the entire 2009 nursing a shoulder injury. Drummond has gone 2-4 with a 5.74 ERA with 55 strikeouts and 47 walks in 69.0 innings in three seasons with the Bruins.
Giovinazzo has batted .279 with three home runs, 16 RBI and 26 runs in 50 games (23 starts) as an outfielder in 2010. The native of Laguna Hills, Calif., has performed best in the second half of the Bruins’ season, having posted a .381 batting average and .480 on-base percentage in Pac-10 play. In the Bruins’ last 19 contests, Giovinazzo has batted .362 with one homer, two triples, four doubles, 10 RBI and 14 runs.
Goeddel has been UCLA’s go-to right-hander out of the bullpen, going 2-0 with a 3.33 ERA in 33 appearances, the second-highest total on the team. The right-hander from Hillsborough, Calif., has registered 55 strikeouts and 21 walks in 46.0 innings, limiting the opposition to a .244 batting average. Goeddel made nine relief appearances in 2009 after missing the 2008 season recovering from an arm injury sustained in high school.
Krill has batted .290 with seven homers, 36 RBI and 44 runs in 50 games (46 starts) for the Bruins in 2010. One of three starting outfielders (right field), Krill hit at a .296 clip in Pac-10 action, leading UCLA with five home runs in conference games. Aside from being a perfect 7-for-7 on the basepaths this season, Krill has collected 15 multiple-hit games and eight multiple-RBI efforts.
Gallego has started at shortstop in all but two games the last two seasons. The junior from Yorba Linda, Calif., has batted .261 with three homers, two triples, 13 doubles and a team-leading 21 stolen bases in 22 attempts this season. Gallego has started at shortstop in 58 contests and ranks fourth on the team with 23 walks and first with 16 hit-by-pitches. Last spring, he started in 55 games at shortstop, batting .273 with 27 RBI and 26 runs.