By: Adam Johnson
Two former Hounds’ standouts, Paul DeJong and Ryan Hinchley, were both selected in the 2015 MLB Draft this past Tuesday, June 9th. DeJong, the infield product out of Illinois State was the first of the two to be drafted as we was picked in the 4th round, 131st overall by the St. Louis Cardinals. The redshirt junior put up impressive numbers throughout the 2015 collegiate season as he led his team in almost every offensive category, batting .333 with 15 doubles and 14 home runs. DeJong was the undoubtedly the main run producer for the Redbirds thanks to his 48 runs batted in and his 47 runs scored. This was not his first time DeJong heard his name called as he was selected in last year’s draft in the 38th round by the Pittsburgh Pirates. Between his dominant few seasons at ISU and tying the single-season home run record (20) last summer in the top ranked Northwoods Collegiate League, DeJong was no longer a sleeper pick in this year’s draft.
Hinchley did not have to wait much longer to hear his name called as the hometown Chicago White Sox nabbed him in the 9th round with the 262nd pick. Hinchley was the go to option out of the pen for the University of Illinois-Chicago Flames in 2015 where he led the team in appearances (27) and saves (10). He was borderline unhittable, fanning 50 batters over 37 innings and only giving up 26 hits, good enough to earn him an impressive .195 batting average against. Hinchley’s dominate 2015 season earned him a spot on the All-Horizon League Second Team after helped lead his Flames to the regular season Horizon League Title. This is the second straight year a UIC Flame has been selected in the MLB Draft as right handed pitcher Tomas Michelson, another former Hound, was selected by the Tampa Bay Rays in the 29th round in 2014 draft.
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