Indians select RHP Mitchell Brown in second round of Draft

By Justin Albers / MLB.com

The Indians selected right-handed pitcher Mitchell Brown with their second-round pick (79th overall) in the First-Year Player Draft Tuesday afternoon. Brown, 18, went 6-1 with a 0.65 ERA in seven starts this spring for Rochester Century H.S. (Minnesota). According to the Rochester Post-Bulletin, Brown was 11-1 with a 0.84 ERA for the season.

The 6-1, 195-pound Brown throws his fastball near 94 mph and had 89 strikeouts in 43 innings for Rochester Century last season. Brown is committed to the University of San Diego.

The pick makes sense for the Indians, who are looking to strengthen their farm system pitching. Austin Adams, one of the team’s top right-handed prospects, had major shoulder surgery in May. The Indians were expected to take a pitcher in the first round of the Draft Monday night, but they opted for outfielder Tyler Naquin instead.

  • Cleveland added another right-handed high school pitcher, Kieran Lovegrove, in the third round. The 6-4, 185-pound Lovegrove went 6-3 with a 1.58 ERA with 78 strikeouts in 62 innings for Mission Viejo H.S. in Mission Viejo, Calif. last season. He’s committed to Arizona State University.

Lovegrove throws his fastball between 90 and 94 mph, but has been inconsistent throughout his career.

  • The Indians selected center fielder D’Vone McClure with their fourth-round pick. McClure, a product of Jacksonville (Fla.) H.S., turned down a football scholarship and is committed to the University of Arkansas for baseball. He hit .412 (35-for-85) with 12 doubles, 15 RBIs and 26 stolen bases during his senior season at Jacksonville.

McClure’s major strengths are considered to be his bat speed and athleticism.

  • The Indians continued to stock up on right-handed pitchers when they took Dylan Baker in the fifth round. Baker, a Juneau, Alaska native, attended Western Nevada College, where he went 13-0 with a 1.91 ERA in 16 starts this spring. He helped Western advance to the Junior College World Series.

Only 11 players from Alaska have ever made it to the big-league level. One of those players — Aaron Cunningham — is currently on the Indians roster.

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