MLB Draft: Rangers take RHP Michael Matuella after Tommy John surgery
The Texas Rangers selected oft-injured Duke right-handed pitcher Michael Matuella in the third round of the MLB draft, 78th overall.
Matuella was considered a potential top-five pick before undergoing Tommy John surgery in April.
The right-hander has also dealt with a back condition called spondylosis.
In 25 innings pitched in 2015, Matuella posted a 1.08 ERA and 24 strikeouts. He started only 24 games in his three seasons at Duke, posting a 3.09 ERA and 121 strikeouts in 141 innings.
Matuella was ranked 23rd on Baseball America's list of 2015's best draft prospects.
Baseball America reported that the injury concerns had dropped him far down several teams' draft boards.
Where Matuella falls depends largely on teams’ opinions of his medical record, but officials with two clubs—one on the area level, one a more senior evaluator—indicated Matuella already was off their draft boards due to medical concerns, and that was before the news of his UCL tear.
- Alex Putterman