CLEVELAND, OH - The Cleveland Indians today announced the club has signed their top two selections from the 2012 First-Year Player Draft, signing first round selection OF TYLER NAQUIN (15th overall) and second round pick RHP MITCH BROWN (79th overall) to Minor League contracts.
Naquin, 21, played his college ball at Texas A&M University in College Station, TX where he batted .380 (92-242) for the Aggies during his junior season with 18 doubles, 6 triples, 3 home runs and 49RBI in 61 games. He also scored 56 runs, stole 21 bases in 26 attempts and posted an OPS of .999 (.458OB/.541SLG). The first-team All-Big 12 selection is also a semifinalist for the 2012 USA Baseball Golden Spikes Award and received Louisville Slugger third team All-American honors.
As a sophomore in 2011, Naquin led all NCAA Division I batters in hits (104) and hit a Big 12-best .381 (104-273) with 23 2B, 7 3B, 2HR and 44RBI in 68 games. He was named Big 12 Player of the Year and garnered All-America honors from College Baseball Insider (First Team), American Baseball Coaches Association/Rawlings (Second Team) and Collegiate Baseball (Second Team) on an Aggie team that advanced to the College World Series in Omaha. In the summer of 2011 he was a member of the USA Baseball 2011 Collegiate National Team, batting .321 (17-53) with 4 2B, 1 3B, 2HR & 10 RBI in 12 games.
The 6-3, left-handed hitting outfielder finished his three-year collegiate career with a .348 (238-687) batting average with 49 2B, 13 3B, 7HR, 153RS and 112 RBI in 187 games. Entering the draft he was named the “Best Pure Hitter” by Baseball America and was listed by the same publication as having the “Best Arm” among draft-eligible amateur players.
Brown, 18, was named the Minnesota Baseball Gatorade Player of the Year in 2012 pitching for Rochester Century High School, going 7-1 in the regular season with a 0.91 ERA. He was also named a third team High School All-American by Rawlings and entered the draft ranked as the 44th best amateur prospect by Baseball America and 51st overall by MLB.com
The Indians have now signed 12 of their 40 selections from the 2012 MLB First-Year Player Draft, which was held from June 4-6.