PHILADELPHIA -- It is safe to say the Phillies selected Santa Barbara (Calif.) High School right-hander Kevin Gowdy on Thursday night in the second round (42nd overall) of the 2016 Draft because they expect to sign him.
Like No.1 overall pick Mickey Moniak, Gowdy has committed to UCLA. But the Phillies are expected to sign Moniak for less than the $9,015,000 allotted for the top pick, which will give the club more money to pay Gowdy to convince him to skip college.
"I think we have a pretty good chance to sign both of these guys," Phillies general manager Matt Klentak said. "But, again, we won't know until there is ink on a piece of paper."
MLBPipeline.com ranked Gowdy, 18, as the No. 37 prospect in the Draft. He went 4-1 with a 1.59 ERA with 93 strikeouts and just five walks in 56 2/3 innings.
Gowdy's fastball sits in the 90- to 93-mph range, but with his frame, scouts think his velocity will improve. He also has a good breaking ball and a good feel for his changeup.
"He's a young right-handed pitcher who has the ability to command the baseball at such a young age," Phillies amateur scouting director Johnny Almaraz said. "He has an above-average fastball and good breaking stuff. I'm a believer you can't teach somebody how to pitch. He's got that innate ability to pitch and get hitters out, and that's what we want in this organization, frontline pitchers."
Gowdy was a 2016 Rawlings-Perfect Game First Team All-American and a member of USA Baseball's 18U National team.
The Draft continues on Friday with Rounds 3-10. The MLB.com preview show begins at 12:30 p.m. ET, with exclusive coverage of Rounds 3-10 beginning at 1 p.m. ET. The Phillies' first selection will be in the third round (78th overall).
Todd Zolecki has covered the Phillies since 2003, and for MLB.com since 2009. Read his Phillies blog The Zo Zone, follow him on Twitter and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.