Jackie Robinson Stadium backstop, Credit: Jeff Poirier
College baseball coaches face an additional recruiting challenge beyond those faced by their football and basketball colleagues. The fact that baseball players – alone of the big three professional sports – can be drafted right out of high school means that in pursuing the best available recruits you have to compete not only with other schools but with professional clubs as well. Seven UCLA commits for next year’s class were drafted this week:
UCLA Bruins head coach John Savage. Photo Credit: Derick E. Hingle-USA TODAY Sports
Additionally, last year’s first overall draft pick (by the Houston Astros) and former UCLA commit, Brady Aiken, was taken 17th overall by the Cleveland Indians. Health issues derailed his signing last year, and, sure enough, he underwent Tommy John surgery in March and will not be available until next season at the earliest.