Three former Tennessee pitchers drafted

Three former Tennessee pitchers were selected in the Major League Baseball draft last week.

Nick Blount, a senior at Southern Polytechnic in Marietta, Ga., was drafted in the ninth round with the 273rd pick by the Chicago White Sox.

The 6-foot-6 Blount was 2-4 with a 2.40 ERA in 20 games for the NAIA school. In 42 2/3 innings, including four starts, Blount struck out 60 and allowed 49 hits.

Blount, who attended South Gwinnett High School in Loganville, Ga., was 5-9 with 6.26 ERA in three seasons, including 12 starts, with the Vols.

Brandon Zajac, a sophomore at nearby Cleveland State, was drafted in the 23rd round with the 702nd pick by the San Francisco Giants.

The 6-6 Zajac was 6-4 with a 3.30 ERA in 13 games for the junior college. In 71 innings, including 12 starts, Zajac struck out 89 and gave up 45 walks.

Zajac, who attended Walker Valley, was 0-1 with a 12.27 ERA and two starts as a freshman for UT in 2012.

He was drafted with the first pick of the 28th round by the Pittsburgh Pirates in 2011.

Andy Hillis, a junior at Lee University, was drafted in the 11th round with the 332nd pick by the Milwaukee Brewers.

The 6-7 Hillis was 3-0 with a 0.96 ERA and 9 saves in 37 1/3 innings. He struck out 66 and walked 19 as the closer for the NAIA program.

Hillis, who attended Brentwood, never appeared in a game for the Vols. He had Tommy John surgery in 2010 and was redshirted his freshman season.

It’s the third time that Hillis has been drafted. The St. Louis Cardinals selected him in the 49th round in 2009 and again in 2012 in the 29th round.

Another former UT player, senior first baseman Cody Stubbs of North Carolina, was selected by the Kansas City Royals in the eighth round with the 234rd pick. Stubbs played his freshman season at UT and then transferred to Walters State.

UT pitcher Zack Godley, a senior, was taken in the 10th round with the 288th pick by the Chicago Cubs.

Two UT signees were also drafted. Pitcher Kyle Serrano, son of UT coach Dave Serrano, was picked in the 29th round by the Colorado Rockies. The Farragut graduate plans to enroll at UT.

First baseman Nathaniel Maggio of Blessed Trinity Catholic in Alpharetta, Ga., was selected in the 32nd round with the 957th pick by the Seattle Mariners.

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Comments » 3

Banner writes:

Question is couldn't Serrano have used these guys? Obviously somebody Iiked them. Let's not forget Andrew Toles who would have been a junior this year and a sure top 3 round draft pick.

Even more alarming is the fact that nine TN high schoolers were drafted and we only land the coach's own son!! Are you kidding me? A majority of these kids are from East TN.

In addition 7 Tennessee high school pitchers have signed with SEC schools. We have one, coach's kid.

Here are the high schoolers drafted in TN.

Clifton - Kentucky
Sheffield - Vanderbilt
Smith - Austin Peay
Biter - UAB
Crowe - South Carolina
Dullin - Ole Miss
Hudson - Miss State
Craig - Wake Forest

When you can't recruit your own state you can't recruit period! Let's keep recruiting California and Farragut High School only. Future looks bleak!

If we have any of the above kids we get to Hoover. Also Godley is CTR recruit as is Nic Williams and Will Maddox. What has CDS been doing???

At least we got CDS own son. I thought he might go to Vandy.

THEKIDWISCONSIN writes:

Very fair question on what CDS has been doing when it's come to recruiting. I was thinking the same thing when I saw only two of our signees were drafted (and it was clear his son was going to come to UT so really, just one).

Normally as a fan you'd be happy that there's no MLB teams taking your influx of talent...but after missing out on Hoover two more years under CDS you almost want to feel good about the recruits and if the MLB scouts aren't showing any interest...???

And you mentioned Toles. Still never got the whole story on him but last week the Midwest League All Star teams were announced and Toles is a starter for Tampa's A-ball team in Bowling Green. Toles is batting .321, 36 SBs, 14 2B, 9 3B and 34 RBI. You're telling me we couldn't have used him the last two years?

And I was also puzzled why you let a upper classman like Chris Fritts go as well? Maybe some leadership would've helped us not miss Hoover...again.

2014 is a huge year for CDS...no more excuses.

us43137415#376444 writes:

Gotta discount Toles.

He had personal problems and issues and would not have played further with the Vols. They cut him loose the first chance they got, and considering his baggage, it was a good move.

He's somebody else's problem now.

Not sure if he's worked his problems out.. the jury is still out.

He could be good, but that ton of baggage he's dragging around, makes him extremely questionable.

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