Three former Inland Valley Pirates have reached the pinnacles of their careers by hearing their names announced in the 2015 MLB Draft.
It started with Cody Ponce late Monday night, who was selected by the Milwaukee Brewers with the 55th overall pick in the second round.
Ponce boasted a microscopic 1.69 ERA in 2013, while only allowing the opposition to hit .164. He was the ace of the staff at Cal Poly Pomona this past season and a big reason why they were able to advance to the semifinal round of the Division 2 World Series.
Christian Kelley celebrated next early Wednesday morning as he was drafted by a familiar mascot, the Pirates in the 11th round. Kelley was the 337th overall pick.
Kelley was one of the undoubted leaders of the Pirates in his two-year stint with the ball club. He was a two-time SCCBL all-star selection hitting .284 in 2014, while ripping in 11 and also scoring 11 runs. Kelley’s prowess as a brick-wall backstop was on full display both seasons as he commanded the best from his pitching staffs and got it time and time again. Mix that with the fact that he has a cannon for an arm and the big league Pirates should feel like they’ve gotten one of the steals of the draft.
Finally, Kyle Garlick was drafted by the Los Angeles Dodgers as the 852nd overall pick in round 28.
Garlick was huge in the push to the playoffs. He hit .344 and was a mainstay in the middle of the lineup for each of his 10 games played. In the playoffs, he showed what clutch and prime-time player he was by coming up with a go-ahead double in the playoff game against Team San Diego, while adding a three-run homer to give the Pirates the lead over the Power in Game 1 of the Championship Series.
We wish the best of luck to all three of the former Pirates who were selected and look forward to seeing many more in future drafts!