The Colorado Rockies had right-handed power pitcher Jonathan Gray atop their draft board and were able to pick him with the third overall selection in the draft.
There had been pre-draft talk that the Chicago Cubs would take Gray second -- assuming the Houston Astros didn't take him first.
"I kept all possibilities open," he said. "I didn't say I was going to go 1 or 2. With me, I have to kind of see something to believe it, so I never got my hopes up too high. I didn't really set it like, say, 'OK, I want to go 1 or 2.' I'm really excited. I think I fit well in the organization."
Gray, who is scheduled to start Friday for Oklahoma in a Super Regional tournament at LSU, has recently hit 100 mph with his fastball, which typically crosses the plate at 94-97 mph. Gray also throws a devastating slider and has a much-improved changeup. Gray is 10-2 with a 1.59 ERA, 22 walks and 138 strikeouts in 119 innings while holding opposing hitters to a .188 batting average.
He said he weighed around 250 pounds when he graduated from high school and went up to 260 in junior college but is now 235. A better diet, greater emphasis on strength and conditioning and work on his mechanics all combined to help his velocity climb, Gray said.
"Now I know how to control it." he said. "I can bring it up to triple digits whenever (needed), but it's been another great tool and weapon I've been able to use this year."
The only time the Rockies picked higher than third in the draft was in 2006, when they chose Stanford pitcher Greg Reynolds with the second pick. Injuries derailed Reynolds' career.