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Next-Level Stuff

Young Joins Four Former Jammers Whose Names Are Called On Day 3

Christian Young threw seven shutout innings for the Jammers earlier this month. P-J file photo

When Christian Young toes the rubber for the Jamestown Jammers tonight at Colburn Park in Newark, he’ll actually be property of the Cincinnati Reds.

Whether or not Young — who is committed to West Virginia University — signs with the National League Central team, is another question.

The Jammers’ tall right-hander was drafted in the 21st round with the 617th overall pick in the Major League Baseball Draft on Wednesday afternoon. Young will still make his scheduled start with Jamestown tonight in the Perfect Game Collegiate Baseball League. He has until July 7 to sign with the Reds or continue his education in Morgantown.

“You are seeing some of the best college players in the country playing in your own backyard, in our beautiful facility all summer long,” Jammers manager Anthony Barone said Wednesday night. “Christian Young was outstanding earlier this season. … He’s going through the process of whether he’s going to sign or not and wants to stay in shape, possibly improve his stock.”

This past season at Niagara County CC, the 6-foot-5 right-hander went 6-2 with a 1.57 earned run average for the national runner-up Thunder Wolves. A Frontier High School graduate from Hamburg, Young also picked up one save and struck out 106 batters in 57• innings pitched. In his only start for Jamestown this summer, Young went seven innings, allowing four hits and three walks while striking out 10 to pick up the win.

“In the last couple of years, last year with Dan Dallas, Tolly Filotei left us early, and this year with Christian, it’s a big risk,” Barone said about highly talented players possibly leaving so quickly into the summer season because of the MLB Draft. “You want to bring the best possible talent into your clubhouse. With Christian it was a no-brainer. He’s committed to West Virgina, has the option of signing with the Reds or going to West Virginia. He has his head on his shoulders and he’s a great kid.”

Young wasn’t the only player with Jammers’ ties to hear their name called in the draft.

Four 2015 Jammers from the Prospect League were also chosen.

“It’s really exciting as an organization and for the overall impact they bring to the clubhouse right now,” Barone said. “You see former Jammers and current Jammers being drafted, it says a lot about what we are doing here. It’s really exciting.”

Angelo State University’s Matt Shannon was selected in the 12th round by the Toronto Blue Jays with the 369th overall pick. The 6-foot-3 right-handed pitcher from Pleasanton, Texas, went 9-5 with a 3.22 ERA for the Rams this past season. Shannon struck out 93 in 100ª innings pitched. For the Jammers in 2015, Shannon went 1-3 with a 4.47 ERA in 12 appearances, including six starts.

Three other players from the 2015 Jammers were selected in the 29th round.

Ohio State senior Jalen Washington was picked by the San Diego Padres with the 858th pick. Washington made 51 starts at shortstop for the Buckeyes this season, hitting .266 with 14 doubles, five triples, seven home runs, 38 RBIs, 14 stolen bases and a .921 fielding percentage. A Prospect League all-star in 2015, Washington split his time on the infield and at catcher, which is the position he was listed at when he was drafted. In the summer of 2015, Washington hit .271 with three doubles, three triples, a home run, seven RBIs and 39 runs scored while getting hit by a pitch an astounding 17 times.

University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee right-handed pitcher Adam Reuss was picked by the Oakland A’s with the 861st overall pick. The 6-foot-5 senior went 2-6 with a 5.95 ERA, striking out 49 batters in 59 innings pitched this past season for the Panthers.

“With Reuss and Shannon, they are both big guys. When they got older, we knew they’d be draft guys,” Barone said. “Paxton De La Garza is playing professionally too. We’ve had a lot of success the last couple of years.”

Ohio State center fielder Tre Gantt was picked by the Cleveland Indians with the 882nd pick. Gantt hit .314 with 13 doubles, two triples, two home runs, 18 RBIs, 14 stolen bases and 46 runs scored for the Buckeyes this season. The 5-foot-10 left-handed hitter and thrower still has another year of eligibility remaining in Columbus should he choose not to sign. Gantt was limited to a short stay in Jamestown during the summer of 2015 due to injuries.

“With all four of them, you just sort of knew it was a matter of time that it would take place,” Barone said. “With Gantt and Washington, they were outstanding athletes, they just needed the seasoning. It was cool to be a part of that.”

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