Two former Marshall County High School baseball players were taken on the third and final day of Major League Baseball’s First-Year Player Draft Saturday.
Among more than 1,200 players chosen were Andrew Edwards, a 2010 MCHS graduate, and teammate Cody Forsythe, who graduated in 2009, the last time the Marshals won the Region 1 tournament and advanced to the state tournament.
Both are pitchers, Edwards a right-hander and Forsythe a lefty.
Edwards, who just finished his junior year at Western Kentucky after playing two years at Rend Lake College in Ina, Ill., was chosen in the 19th round by the Kansas City Royals. He was the 564th selection.
Forsythe, who just completed a four-year career at Southern Illinois University, was picked by the Philadelphia Phillies in the 25th round, the 751st player to be drafted.
Edwards had a 6-5 record in his first season at WKU. The 6-6,250-pounder has mid-90-mph speed.
“I’ve always been a St. Louis Cardinals fan,” Edwards said, “but it doesn’t really matter which team picks me.”
It’s not a given that Edwards will wind up with the Royals, an interleague rival of the Cardinals, as the draft merely assigns rights to sign a player or to trade those rights to another team.
Edwards could also return to WKU for his senior season.
Forsythe was a three-time all-Missouri Valley Conference choice during his collegiate career in Carbondale. He is SIU’s all-time leader in starts (49) and innings pitched (346 2/3). The 6-0, 165-pounder had 264 strikeouts, fifth on the school’s all-time list.
“I don’t think there’s such a thing as a bad situation for me at this point,” Forsythe told The Southern Illinoisan’s Todd Heffernan. “I was looking for an opportunity, and that’s what I got. I’m just excited to get a chance.”
The two players were key components of the 2009 Marshals squad, which compiled a 30-5 record with championship titles in District 4 and Region 1. Coach Don Bock’s final Marshals team won a best-of-three play-in series to advance to the state finals, which was an eight-team tournament then.
The season ended in a 2-0 loss to eventual state champion Lexington Catholic.
The Houston Astros made Texas native Mark Appel the overall No. 1 pick on Thursday. Appel is a right-handed pitcher for Stanford University in California.
According to Major League Baseball, nearly 54 percent of the players drafted were pitchers. Edwards was one of 475 right-handers picked.
Some familiar names were on the list of players chosen, including Mike Yaztrzemski, grandson of Boston Red Sox great Carl Yaztrzemski; Cavan Biggio, son of Craig Biggio; Kacy Clemens, son of Roger Clemens; Joshua Pettitte, son of Andy Pettitte; and Dillon Moyer, son of Jamie Moyer.
Also, Ben Verlander, younger brother of Detroit Tigers ace Justin Verlander, was picked by the Tigers in the 14th round.