Four former Keene Swamp Bats pitchers were taken in the second day of the MLB Draft Tuesday, including one Franklin Pierce University hurler.
Butler junior Ryan Pepiot was taken in the third round, 102nd overall, by the Los Angeles Dodgers; Georgia junior Tim Elliott went in the fourth round, 126th overall, to the Seattle Mariners; St. John’s junior Gavin Hollowell was picked up by the Colorado Rockies in the sixth round, 189th overall; and recent Franklin Pierce graduate Zach Hart was selected in the 10th round, 310th overall, by the Cleveland Indians.
Pepiot, Elliott and Hollowell were all part of the Swamp Bats rotation in 2017, while Hart played in 2016.
Hart made 11 appearances (nine starts) in Keene, going 3-4 with a 3.73 ERA and 41 strikeouts. With the Ravens, he made All-Northeast 10 Conference twice, making the first team as a junior and third team as a senior, and combined with Ryan Covelle and Anthony Matarazzo to shut out Merrimack in the conference title game.
Hart becomes the 29th Franklin Pierce player selected in the MLB Draft; two former Ravens are currently playing in the pros: pitcher Kevin McGowan is with Triple A Fresno in the Washington Nationals system and Miles Sheehan is with Ottawa in the independent Can-Am League.
In 2017, Pepiot made five starts in a shortened stint with the Swamp Bats, going 0-2 with a 5.72 ERA and 19 strikeouts. Elliott made nine appearances (seven starts), going 6-1 with a 2.53 ERA and 42 strikeouts, while Hollowell made seven appearances (five starts) and went 3-0 with a 3.23 ERA and 42 strikeouts.“I’m desirous of 10 (draftees) this year,” SwampBats President Kevin Watterson said. “I was hoping we’d get to five today, because that’s 10 rounds, and then tomorrow is 30 rounds, but we’re pretty darn excited to have a third-rounder, a fourth-rounder and a sixth-rounder through the first 10 rounds.”
Navy senior pitcher Noah Song made a lot of history this season. The 6-foot-4 right-hander set six program records, including for most career wins (32) and strikeouts (428), led the nation with 161 strikeouts this season and became the Naval Academy’s first player to be named first-team All-American by Collegiate Baseball. On Tuesday, Song added another highlight to his already sterling resume: The Boston Red Sox drafted him No. 137 overall, the final selection of the fourth round, making Song the highest first-year MLB draft selection in the Naval Academy’s history.