ARLINGTON, TEXAS - The Texas Rangers selected right-handed pitcher Dillon Tate with the 4th overall pick and outfielder Eric Jenkins at 45th overall on the first day of the 2015 Major League Baseball First-Year Player Draft.
Tate was the club's first round selection. The 6-foot-2, 200-pound right-hander was a 2015 Louisville Slugger All-American and Golden Spikes Award Semifinalist as a junior at the University of California-Santa Barbara. He went 8-5 with a 2.26 ERA (26 ER/103.1 IP) and 111 strikeouts against 28 walks in 14 starts for the Gauchos this season. The right-hander was tabbed as the top pitcher and 3rd-best prospect overall in the draft by Baseball America. He was ranked 5th overall (#2 pitcher) by MLB.com and 4th overall (#1 pitcher) by ESPN.com.
After recording 12 saves a sophomore, Tate was named the Gauchos' Friday starter this season. The right-hander earned a spot on USA Baseball's Collegiate National Team last summer, recording 3 saves with a 0.79 ERA in 11 appearances. Tate is the highest selection ever out of UCSB, the school that also produced former Ranger Michael Young.
Tate attended Claremont (CA) High School, earning three letters for the Wolfpack. He played his summer ball for the Urban Youth Academy.
The 6-foot-2, 165-pound Jenkins batted .300 (24-80) with 6 doubles, 2 triples, 2 home runs, 15 RBI, 23 runs scored, and 18 stolen bases at West Columbus High School in Cerro Gordo, North Carolina. The outfielder was rated as the 21st-best position player and 42nd-best prospect in the draft overall by Baseball America. The left-handed batter and right-handed thrower was also tabbed by MLB.com as the 37th-best prospect overall. He garnered 2015 Perfect Game 2nd Team All-American and Atlantic-All Region First Team honors following his senior year. The University of North Carolina-Wilmington recruit was 50-for-50 in steal attempts over his final 2 prep seasons.
The draft continues at 12 Noon tomorrow, a day that is scheduled to cover rounds 3 through 10.