More than 1,000 baseball players heard their names called the past three days during the 2015 MLB Draft, including nine players from the Florida Gators roster and another nine Florida signees.
Richie Martin (20th overall) led the way for roster players, followed by Harrison Bader (100th), Eric Hanhold (181), Danny Young (242), Taylor Lewis (270), Josh Tobias (294), Bobby Poyner (411), Mike Vinson (730) and Aaron Rhodes (855).
The nine players drafted this year give Florida 61 players drafted since Kevin O’Sullivan took over as head coach, including an SEC-leading 48 in the past six drafts.
Additionally, Florida had nine members of their recruiting class hear their names called led by Kyle Tucker (brother of former Gator standout Preston Tucker), who was selected fifth overall, joining his brother in the Houston Astros organization.
Of the nine signees that were drafted, four will most definitely sign professional contracts. Tucker as well as Thomas Szapucki (New York Mets, 149th) have made their intentions clear. Jacob Woodford (St. Louis Cardinals, 39th) and Brady Singer (Toronto Blue Jays, 56th) will all likely sign professional deals.
Michael Zimmerman, Jonathan India, Daniel Reyes, Deacon Liput and Hunter Bowling were all also drafted but should end up wearing Orange and Blue next year.
Of the roster players that were drafted, two (Bobby Poyner and Josh Tobias) are seniors and have exhausted their eligibility. Martin and Bader will sign with the teams that they were drafted by and Gator Country expects that Hanhold, Young and Lewis will follow suit.
Rhodes and Vinson are interesting cases. Rhodes pitched less this season than he has in years past and even though he was drafted low, has already graduated school. All of those factors likely lead him to sign.
Vinson returned from an elbow injury this season but only made seven appearances. He is a redshirt sophomore and could improve his draft stock by returning next season if his role was increased. However, with a talented recruiting class and a young pitching staff returning as veterans next year, Vinson may choose to take the money now and begin a professional career.