Three seniors who helped lead the recent resurgence of the Iowa baseball program were among players selected Saturday on the final day of baseball’s annual free agent draft.
Outfielder Joel Booker, shortstop Nick Roscetti and pitcher/infielder Tyler Peyton became the ninth, 10th and 11th players players selected in the draft since Rick Heller took over the Hawkeye program in 2013 — the most in a three-year stretch for Iowa since the 1991-93 seasons.
Booker was chosen in the 22nd round by the Chicago White Sox, Roscetti was picked in the Brewers in the 26th round and Peyton was taken as a pitcher in the 29th round by the Chicago Cubs.
A first-team all-Big Ten selection, Booker was selected following a breakout senior season. The Columbus, North Carolina, native led Iowa with a .370 batting average, 87 hits, 19 doubles and 23 stolen bases.
Roscetti, a two-time all-Big Ten selection from Sherman, lllinois, hit .305 and led the Hawkeyes with 39 RBI.
Peyton was drafted for the second time in as many years. A 33rd-round choice of the Reds a year ago, the right hander from Grimes, Iowa went 4-5 with a 4.24 ERA in addition to hitting .335.
No other Quad-City area players joined Baltimore Orioles first-round choice Cody Sedlock, a Rock Island Alleman graduate from Sherrard who was the 27th overall pick, in this year’s draft class.
The Big Ten pitcher of the year this season as a junior at Illinois, Sedlock was one of four Illinois players drafted.
Catcher Jason Goldstein was taken by Seattle in the ninth round, pitcher Nick Blackburn was selected by Arizona in the 16th round and pitcher Justin Nielsen, a former Iowa prep from Martensdale-St. Marys, went in the 34th round to the Angels.
This year’s draft also included one player who has signed to play at Black Hawk College in Moline. Outfielder Pedro Alfonseca of North Kansas City, Missouri, was chosen by Cleveland in the 39th round.
Houston, the parent club of the Quad-Cities River Bandits, selected 35 college players among the 40 players it took in this year’s draft. The Astros selected 22 position players and 18 pitchers.
Three of those pitchers, eighth-round choice Nick Hernandez from the University of Houston, ninth-round selection Ryan Hartman of Tennessee Wesleyan and 10th-round pick Dustin Hunt of Northeastern, have agreed to contract terms with Houston according to MLB.com.