MLB Draft Day 2: Nationals’ selections in rounds 3 to 10

nationals90_image_thumbnailToday is the second day of the MLB Draft and features rounds three through 10. The Nationals make selections in each round. As they make them, we will have the details below:

Third round: The Nationals selected catcher Jakson Reetz from Norris High in Firth, Neb., with the 93rd overall pick.  He hit .487 with eight home runs, scored 37 runs and had 37 RBI this season, earning Gatorade Player of the Year honors. He is listed at 6 feet 1, 195 pounds. Baseball America rated him the No. 62 overall draft prospect and best in his state. He was named MVP of the Perfect Game All-America Classic and hit .435 with the U.S. national team in the 18-and-under World Cup.

Reetz, according to MLB.com’s scouting profile, has a quick, line-drive bat and is strong enough to develop average power. He profiles as a solid catcher. He also played outfield and pitched for his high school team and hit the low 90s, and starred on the football and basketball teams, too. Athletic catcher are hard to find.

Entering this draft, Nebraska hadn’t produced a high school player drafted in the top five rounds since 1996. Firth has a population of 590. The Nationals picked college players almost exclusively on the second day of the draft, but officials were thrilled to get Reetz.

“This is a high school catcher that we love,” assistant general manager and vice president of scouting operations Kris Kline said. “A power bat a really good feel to hit. His catching skills are on the line or maybe a tick better than Derek Norris the right time. I think you’re looking at an offensive catcher at the major league level.:

Fourth round: With the No. 124 overall pick, the Nationals selected 6-foot-2 right-handed pitcher Robert Dickey from Blinn Junior College in Texas. He had a 6-6 record this season and posted a 3.82 ERA, and struck out 63 in 73 innings. After his fastball sat in the 89-91 mph range, it rose to the mid-90s this season, even hitting 95 and 96 mph. He also throws a slider and change-up.

“He’s a strong right-handed pitcher, great body and great character kid,” Nationals midwest crosschecker Jimmy Gonzales said. “A solid breaking ball and we think he’s going to be a starter.”

Dickey faded in the spring and missed a start with biceps tendinitis, according to MLB.com’s scouting profile. He helped lead his junior college to the Junior College World Series. And no, this is not the same Robert “R.A.” Dickey as the Cy Young Award winner in Toronto.

Fifth round: With the No. 154 overall pick, the Nationals tabbed right-handed pitcher Drew Van Orden from Duke University. He went 6-5 with a 3.19 ERA and struck out 91 batters in 87 1/3 innings over 14 starts this season. In April, he outdueled the No. 3 overall pick, Carlos Rondon, and struck out 11 over eight shutout innings.

Sixth round: With the No. 184 overall selection, the Nationals picked right-handed pitcher Austen Williams from Texas State University. He went 8-3 with a 3.65 ERA in 15 starts, and struck out 96 batters in 98 2/3 innings. He was named to the All-Sun Belt second team. He is listed at 6-foot-3, 200 pounds.

Seventh round: With the No. 214 overall pick, the Nationals chose center fielder Dale Carey from the University of Miami. Carey, listed at 6-foot-2, 207 pounds, led his team with a .350 average and 16 doubles. He also hit seven home runs, stole 16 bases and scored 53 runs, second most in the conference. According to the Nationals, he is a plus defender and one of the best pure athletes in the draft.

Eighth round: With the No. 244 overall selection, the Nationals took left-handed power-hitting left fielder Jeff Gardner from the University of Louisville. The 6-foot-2, 220-pound outfielder was the AAC Player of the Year after hitting .326 with nine home runs, and led the league with 67 RBI and a .551 slugging percentage. The left-handed hitter is a three-time all-conference player. He was named to the dean’s list several times while in college.

Ninth round: With the No. 274 overall pick, the Nationals picked left-handed power-hitting first baseman Austin Byler from the University of Nevada-Reno. Byler, listed at 6-foot-3, 225 pounds, hit 14 home runs and posted a league best .624 slugging percentage and a .420 on-base percentage. He was a first-team All-Mountain West selection.

Tenth round: With the No. 304 overall, the Nationals selected right field Matt Page from Oklahoma Baptist University. The senior is listed at 6-foot-3, 210 pounds.

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