6/8/2013 4:52 P.M. ET
Wheeler could end up being a lefty specialist
By Ethan Asofsky / MLB.com
The White Sox selected Texas Tech reliever Andre Wheeler in the 15th round of Saturday's First-Year Player Draft. The junior led the Red Raiders with 23 appearances, serving as their primary lefty out of the bullpen.
While Wheeler's 6.19 ERA doesn't seem all that impressive, he'll likely be used as a lefty specialist at the next level. In his sophomore year, left-handed batters hit .229 against him, while right-handers scorched him for a .405 average.
Wheeler's four wins this season were the most by a Texas Tech reliever since 2006. He also struck out 21 in 32 innings and tallied 12 scoreless relief outings on the season.
Wheeler was selected by the Dodgers out of high school in the 22nd round of the 2010 Draft but didn't sign. He was initially taken as a right fielder.
White Sox select high school righty Ball in 11th round
The White Sox started Day 3 of the First-Year Player Draft by taking their fourth high school player. Bonita Vista High School right-hander Matthew Ball shined in the Mesa League this year, leading the San Diego Section with 115 strikeouts and a 0.71 ERA in the regular season.
Chicago drafted Ball in the 11th round with the 333rd overall pick, investing in another young arm for the future. The White Sox used six of their eight picks on Friday to draft pitchers, and they continued that trend into the early part of Saturday.
Bonita Vista coach Vince Gervais told UT Preps, a San Diego-area prep school source, that Ball can consistently hit 86 mph and tops out around 92 mph. Those numbers should only improve as Ball continues to build arm strength and develop.
Ball held opponents to a .166 batting average and won seven of his 11 starts on the season. He threw seven complete games and didn't allow a home run, according to Max Preps.
White Sox take versatile infielder Shryock at No. 363
The White Sox took just their fourth position player of the First-Year Player Draft in the 12th round on Saturday. Cal-State Bakersfield shortstop Tyler Shryock was named WAC player of the year this season after he batted .362 in conference play and led all players with 42 hits. He also earned First Team all-WAC honors.
The junior from Tehachapi, Calif., batted .357, posted a .413 on base percentage and knocked in 28 runs on the season. His team-high 89 hits helped Cal-Bakersfield finish first in the WAC.
Chicago will be getting a versatile middle infielder that bats from the left side of the plate. He steadily improved in each of his three seasons in school, and should only build on his impressive offensive numbers.
Hayes gives White Sox an experienced college bat
Oregon State first baseman Danny Hayes is having a pretty good week. In the Beavers' Corvallis Regional Final game of the NCAA baseball tournament last Sunday, Hayes drove in three runs to seal his team's trip to the Super Regionals. Then on Saturday, he was selected in the 13th round of the First-Year Player Draft by the Chicago White Sox.
The senior from Rancho Murieta, Calif., didn't get on base as much this season as he did in his junior year, when he batted .307 with five home runs and 27 RBIs. He did improve his run production, plating 37 as a senior and leading the Beavers to a 48-10 record.
Hayes has a strong glove at first and gives the White Sox an experienced bat. He started all four years at Oregon State.
14th-round pick Barnette an option for rotation or 'pen
Coming out of high school, Tyler Barnette was the Red Sox's ninth-round selection in 2010. He chose to go to Charlotte, where he saw immediate success and was named Atlantic 10 Rookie of the Year after going 9-2 with a 2.29 ERA in 16 starts. Chicago took a chance on Barnette in the 14th round on Saturday, using its 423rd overall pick on the right-hander.
Despite adding 20 pounds of good weight since high school, Barnette has not seen his velocity improve and his numbers have only declined since that standout freshman year. His fastball sits in the upper-80s, occasionally touching 92 mph with sinking action. He also throws a slider and a changeup, both of which are Major League average when at their best.
In his sophomore campaign, Barnette's ERA ballooned to 4.20 and his strikeout numbers were way down. He brought his ERA down a notch to 3.97 this season, but he hasn't strung together enough consistent outings to replicate the success from his freshman year.
Chicago will probably try to keep Barnette in the rotation, but some think his best chance is in the bullpen.
Ethan Asofsky is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.