BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (UAB ATHLETICS) — Redshirt sophomore pitcher Graham Ashcraft became the highest drafted University of Alabama-Birmingham baseball player in program history Tuesday when he was selected by the Cincinnati Reds in the sixth round of the 2019 Major League Baseball Draft.
The 6-foot-2, right-handed pitcher was the 174th overall pick. He appeared in 17 games for the Blazers in 2019 and struck out a team-high 53 batters in 56.0 innings of work.
His top performance came against his former school as Ashcraft held No. 4 Mississippi State hitless through 5.2 innings while striking out seven Bulldogs on Feb. 20 in Starkville.
“Everyone in the UAB baseball family, his teammates and coaches, are thrilled that Graham has been given this opportunity by the Cincinnati Reds,” head coach Brian Shoop said.
He becomes the highest drafted UAB player over another Huntsville guy in Brewer Hicklen who was taken in the seventh round in 2017.
“We only had Graham for one year and we grew to love him. He will be a Blazer for life. He has a big arm and has the ability to touch 96-97. As he continues to develop command of the strike zone, he is going to be an amazing talent.”
Ashcraft becomes the 30th Blazer drafted in program history and the first since 2017 when Hicklen went in the seventh round to the Kansas City Royals and Garrett Whitlock in the 18th round to the New York Yankees.