June 11, 2009
PHILADELPHIA, Pa. - Rhode Island's Dan Rhault and Pat Lehman of George Washington, the Atlantic 10 Player and Pitcher of the Year, were among a league-record 16 student-athletes from the Conference selected in the 2009 Major League Draft. Ten A-10 schools had at least one player taken in the three-day, 50-round draft, with Rhode Island leading the way with a program-record four selections.
Rhault was selected by the Tampa Bay Rays in the 26th round (799th overall), while Lehman was drafted by the Washington Nationals in the 13th round (382nd overall). The senior righthander led the league in earned-run average (2.40), strikeouts (89) and innings pitched (105) while compiling a 7-4 record. It marks the 10th consecutive year in which a GW standout has been selected.
Eric Smith of Rhode Island was the first A-10 player taken as the Arizona Diamondbacks selected the junior righthander with the 60th overall pick. A first-team All-Conference selection, Smith posted a 5-3 record this past season with 56 strikeouts in 70.2 innings pitched. He is the highest URI selection in program annals.
Over the past four years, 52 student-athletes from the Atlantic 10 have been selected in the MLB Draft.
Round (Overall Selection) - Name, School - Class, Position - Team
2 (60) - Eric Smith, Rhode Island - Jr., RHP - Arizona Diamondbacks
6 (195) - Rob Lyerly, Charlotte - Jr., INF - New York Yankees
13 (382) - Pat Lehman, George Washington - Sr., RHP - Washington Nationals
14 (414) - Nick Greenwood, Rhode Island - Jr., LHP - San Diego Padres
16 (490) - Dave Sever, Saint Louis - Sr., RHP - Toronto Blue Jays
21 (622) - Mitchell Clegg, Massachusetts - Sr., LHP - Washington Nationals
22 (652) - Danny Rosenbaum, Xavier - Jr., LHP - Washington Nationals
26 (799) - Dan Rhault, Rhode Island - Sr., SS - Tampa Bay Rays
27 (821) - Aaron Bray, Charlotte - Sr., 3B - Houston Astros
28 (850) - Zach Outman, Saint Louis - Jr., RHP - Toronto Blue Jays
29 (867) - Luke Demko, Rhode Island - Sr., RHP - San Francisco Giants
32 (974) - TJ Chism, La Salle - Jr., 1B - New York Mets
34 (1027) - Justin Dignelli, George Washington - Jr., RHP - Los Angeles Dodgers
38 (1151) - Sean Barksdale, Temple - Sr., OF - Houston Astros
38 (1152) - Peter Kennelly, Fordham - Sr., RHP - Minnesota Twins
49 (1471) - Mark Tracy, Duquesne - Jr., C/1B - Colorado Rockies