The Pittsburgh Pirates selected Arizona Wildcats outfielder Matt Fraizer in the third round of the 2019 MLB draft Tuesday.
Fraizer, who missed the final 37 games this season because of a broken hand, had been contemplating a return to Arizona, going so far as to apply for a medical-hardship waiver. However, being taken with the 95th pick probably means his UA playing days are over.
Fraizer’s father, Terance, told the Star last week that the family was seeking “fair” treatment for Matt, a big, athletic center fielder who was in the midst of a breakout season before getting hurt. The round in which Fraizer was selected was more important than the projected slot money, Terance said. The bonus, by the way, is approximately $610,080.
Thanks largely to a retooled swing, Fraizer hit .412 in 85 at-bats with 28 RBIs and only six strikeouts. He broke his hamate bone while taking a swing against Utah on March 17 and missed the remainder of the season.
Fraizer was the third Wildcat selected in the first three rounds. He joined classmates Cameron Cannon and Nick Quintana, who were both second-round picks Monday night. Cannon went to the Boston Red Sox with the 43rd pick, Quintana to the Detroit Tigers with the 47th.
This year's draft marks just the second time Arizona has had three players taken in the top three rounds. The only previous occasion was 1985.
Fraizer's selection also marks the second time in three years that the Pirates nabbed a UA center fielder. Pittsburgh took Jared Oliva in the seventh round of the 2017 draft.
Earlier in the third round, the Chicago White Sox drafted UA signee Andrew Dalquist. It remains to be seen whether the right-handed pitcher from Redondo Beach, California, will sign with the Sox or enroll at Arizona. He was selected with the 81st pick, which carries an approximate value of $755,030.
The draft runs through Round 10 today. Rounds 11-40 are Wednesday.
UPDATE: The White Sox took UA left-hander Avery Weems in the sixth round. Weems appeared in 53 games over two seasons, posting a 6-8 record with three saves and a 6.46 ERA.
UPDATE II: The Oakland Athletics selected UA signee Jose Dicochea in the eighth round. The right-handed pitcher played at Sahuarita High School. It's unclear which way this one will go. The approximate value for the 254th pick is $161,040.
UPDATE III: Another UA signee has come off the board on Day 2. The Cleveland Indians selected catcher-first baseman Will Bartlett in the ninth round. Bartlett is from Portola Valley, California, and played most recently for IMG Academy. The projected bonus for the 280th pick is $150,030.