OAKLAND, Calif. - The Oakland A's selected left-handed pitcher A.J. Puk from the University of Florida with the sixth selection in the first round of the 2016 First-Year Player Draft, the club announced today.
Puk is 2-3 with a 3.21 ERA and .195 opponents batting average in 15 starts this year with Florida. He has struck out 95 batters in just 70.0 innings, while walking 31. The 6-7, 230 pound left-hander is 16-9 with a 3.45 ERA in 52 career appearances in three seasons with the Gators and has fanned 245 batters in 190.1 innings. Florida continues its season when it hosts Florida State in a best-of-three NCAA Super Regional this Saturday, Sunday and Monday.
The last time the A's had one of the first six selections in the draft was in 1998 when they selected Mark Mulder with the second overall pick. This marks the second consecutive season the A's drafted a player from the University of Florida with their first pick as Oakland selected shortstop Richie Martin last year. It marks the first time they have selected a pitcher with their number one pick since Sonny Gray in 2011. The A's have now drafted a college player with their first pick in the draft 17 times in the last 20 years. Oakland has two more picks tonight, including the third selection in Lottery Round A (37th pick overall) and their second round pick (47th selection overall). The draft resumes tomorrow at 10:00 a.m. with rounds three through 10 and concludes Saturday at 9:00 am with rounds 11 through 40.