Posted: 12:37 pm Wednesday, June 6th, 2012

2012 MLB Draft: Five local players taken on draft’s final day 

By Matt Porter

The third and final day of the 2012 MLB Draft began with former Palm Beach State and John I. Leonard pitcher Ronald Pena being drafted in the 16th round.

Pena was chosen 504th overall by the Washington Nationals. The 6-foot-3, 205-pound right-hander graduated from John I. Leonard and played for the College of Charleston his freshman year before transferring to Palm Beach State last season. After the season, he transferred back to Charleston and will play there if he does not sign.

In the 18th round, the Baltimore Orioles selected Stetson catcher Sam Kimmel with the 552nd overall pick. Kimmel played at Palm Beach Gardens and Indian River State before transferring to Stetson for his junior season. The speedy 6-foot, 175-pound Kimmel was a middle infielder until his sophomore season at IRSC.

In the 35th round, another Stetson player by way of Gardens was taken. The Chicago Cubs took Stetson third baseman and catcher Ben Carhart 1064th overall. After graduating from Gardens, Carhart played at Palm Beach State.

Two Stetson right-handers were taken in Round 38 and 39. With the 1167th pick, the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim took Jake Boyd, who played at John I. Leonard. With the 1201st selection, the Boston Red Sox chose Kurt Schluter, a Jupiter alum.

In total, 14 players who graduated from Palm Beach County and Treasure Coast high schools were selected, three from this year’s graduating class.

Last year, 25 players with local high school ties were selected, 10 of them graduating seniors. That was an especially high number.

The record for area high school seniors drafted in is 11, set in 1998 and equaled in 2003. In 1995, when the MLB Draft went 87 rounds, 13 local high schoolers were selected. Baseball adopted a 50-round draft format in 1998. Last year, the draft was reduced to 40 rounds.

2012 MLB DRAFT: AREA PLAYERS CHOSEN

3 (114) – R. J. Alvarez, RHP, FAU (Cardinal Newman) – Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim
5 (170) – Brandon Welch, RHP, Palm Beach State (Palm Beach Gardens) – New York Mets
11 (361) – Jamal Martin, CF, Dwyer – Boston Red Sox
12 (384) – Carlos Lopez, SS, Wake Forest (Atlantic) – Washington Nationals
13 (415) – John Silviano, C, Summit Christian – Toronto Blue Jays
13 (423) – Phildrick Llewellyn, C, Trinity Christian – Arizona Diamondbacks
13 (424) – Devon Travis, 2B, Florida State (Palm Beach Central) – Detroit Tigers
14 (429) – Joe Sclafani, SS, Dartmouth (Jensen Beach) – Arizona Diamondbacks
16 (504) – Ronald Pena, RHP, Palm Beach State (John I. Leonard) – Washington Nationals
18 (552) – Sam Kimmel, C, Stetson (Palm Beach Gardens) – Baltimore Orioles
25 (780) – Mariano Llorens, RHP, Miami-Dade CC (Dwyer) – St. Louis Cardinals
35 (1064) – Ben Carhart, 3B, Stetson (Palm Beach Gardens) – Chicago Cubs
38 (1167) – Jake Boyd, RHP, Stetson (John I. Leonard) – Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim
39 (1201) – Kurt Schluter, RHP, Stetson (Jupiter) – Boston Red Sox

COLLEGES

Florida
1 (3) – Mike Zunino, C – Seattle Mariners
1 (31) – Brian Johnson, LHP – Boston Red Sox
2 (61) – Nolan Fontana, SS, Houston Astros
2 (82) – Steven Rodriguez, LHP – Los Angeles Dodgers
2 (118) – Austin Maddox, RHP – Boston Red Sox
7 (219) – Preston Tucker, OF – Houston Astros
7 (244) – Hudson Randall, RHP – Detroit Tigers
9 (292) – Daniel Pigott, OF – Cincinnati Reds
20 (631) – Gregory Larson, RHP – Boston Red Sox

Florida State
1 (23) – James Ramsey, OF – St. Louis Cardinals
6 (200 – Jayce Boyd, 1B – New York Mets
7 (234) – Robert Benincasa, RHP – Washington Nationals
14 (447) – Sherman Johnson. 2B – Los Angeles Angels
14 (454) – Hunter Scantling, RHP – Detroit Tigers
27 (836) – Justin Gonzalez, SS – Los Angeles Dodgers

Miami
2 (94) – Peter O’Brien, C – New York Yankees
7 (238) – Eduardo Encinosa, RHP – San Francisco Giants
8 (264) – Stephen Perez, SS – Washington Nationals
20 (611) – Stephen Ewing, LHP – Seattle Mariners
34 (1057) – Eric Erickson, LHP – New York Yankees

Florida Atlantic
19 (588) – Kyle Newton, 3B – Colorado Rockies
34 (1052) – Ryan Garton, RHP – Tampa Bay Rays

Florida International
21 (663) – Rudy Flores, 1B – Arizona Diamondbacks
26 (808) – Mason McVay, LHP – San Francisco Giants
36 (1089) – Michael Martinez, 1B – Houston Astros

Other area schools
3 (116) – Bryan de la Rosa, C, Bucky Dent Baseball Academy – Atlanta Braves
14 (455) – Ryan Gibbard, RHP, Lynn – Milwaukee Brewers
26 (793) – Mark Donato, 1B, Indian River State – Kansas City Royals