Highlighted by Cincinnati Reds’ first round selection Phillip Ervin, nine current and former Bullfrogs were selected in this year’s MLB First Year Player Draft.
The Reds selected Ervin 27thoverall, the highest selection of a former Bullfrog ever. Mitch Haniger, who was selected at 38th overall by the Milwaukee Brewers in 2012, previously held that mark.
Ervin played for the 2011 Bullfrogs team, a squad which now retrospectively boasts five 2013 draft picks. In addition to Ervin, 2011 Bullfrog players Jacob May (third round, Chicago White Sox), Adam Cimber (9th round, San Diego Padres), Duncan McAlpine (16th round, Detroit Tigers) and Zak Hermans (30th round, Chicago Cubs) were selected in the 2013 draft.
McAlpine and Hermans also played for the Bullfrogs in 2012. Three additional 2012 Bullfrog players were also drafted: Justin Seager (12th round, Seattle Mariners), Bud Jeter (25th round, Arizona Diamondbacks) and Taylor Johnson (40th round, Detroit Tigers).
In addition to the alumni, one current Bullfrog, Federico Castagnini was also selected in the draft. Castagnini, who has appeared in just one game for the Bullfrogs in 2013, was taken in the 30th round by the Baltimore Orioles.
Though there are many milestones for the Bullfrogs from this weekend’s draft, the success of the members of the 2011 team is undoubtedly the biggest takeaway. And, according to former Bullfrogs Manager Jordan Bischel, the fact that the particular team had five players drafted in this year’s draft is no coincidence.
“That team was so talented,” Bischel said in a text message on Saturday. “It was easy to become a fan watching our 2011 team play. To have two first round picks on one team is a special occurrence.”
Bischel was referring to Haniger, who was the other first round pick on the 2011 team in addition to Ervin.
Rather than just being top heavy, though, Bischel added that the 2011 team featured a number of talented players, not just those who were drafted high.
“The depth in 2011 was equally as unique,” he explained. “It will be a thrill for myself and hopefully all of the tremendous Bullfrogs fans to watch all of these alumni on their path to major league baseball.”
2012 Bullfrog alumnus Justin Seager finds himself in perhaps the most unique situation of any of the 2013 Bullfrog draftees. Seager was selected in the 12th round by the Seattle Mariners, the same team on which his older brother Kyle currently plays.
“Very happy to be a Mariner,” Seager tweeted on Saturday. “Plus they have a good role model to follow in the big leagues,” he added, referring to his brother.
Seager’s younger brother, Cory, was also selected out of high school by the Los Angeles Dodgers in last year’s draft.
Hermans, who totaled seven wins during his two seasons as a Bullfrog, also finds himself in an intriguing situation. The Princeton graduate is a huge fan of sports history, and doesn’t seem think that it is a coincidence that he was drafted by one of the most historic franchises in Major League Baseball.
“I went to Wrigley (Field) for the first time two years ago and there’s a picture of my dad and me there, and (in the picture) I’m wearing a ‘property of the Chicago Cubs’ shirt,” Hermans beamed. “It was prophetic.”
“All in all, I’m just glad this is over.” Hermans said in a text message. “This was the most nerve-racking day of my life.”
The wait is now over not just for Hermans, but for all nine former Bullfrogs selected in the 2013 draft. Now, as Bischel said, Bullfrog fans will get the joy of watching them on their journey to Major League Baseball.
The Bullfrogs are a part of the 16-team Northwoods League. The Northwoods League has more fans and more teams than any other summer collegiate baseball league.