Following in the footsteps of first round pick Alek Manoah, a host of West Virginia baseball players heard their names called on the final two days of the 2019 MLB Draft.
Ivan Gonzalez was the second Mountaineer to come off of the board as the Chicago White Sox made the catcher their eighth round selection.
Gonzalez had finished this past season having started in 60 games. The senior backstop hit .294 at the plate while, defensively, he finished with a fielding percentage of .991.
In his WVU career, Gonzalez secured 1,291 putouts, placing him at fourth in program history. He is also fourth in program history in games played with 211.
Come day three of the draft, left-handed pitcher Nick Snyder was selected by the Arizona Diamondbacks with the 332nd overall pick in the 11th round.
The junior Snyder transferred to WVU following his freshman year at Mercer County Community College in New Jersey. In his two seasons in the gold and blue, Snyder grew to become a pivotal member of the Mountaineers’ pitching staff as he served as the team’s weekday starter in 2019.
As a starter, Snyder saw his best season yet as he finished the 2019 campaign going 9-1 while striking out 103 opponents and holding opposing batters to a .179 batting average. On April 30, Snyder carried a no-hitter against Marshall before giving up a hit with two outs in the bottom of the ninth inning.
The Baltimore Orioles made right-handed pitcher Kade Strowd the first pick of the 12th round.
During his three seasons in Morgantown, Strowd primarily served as a starting pitcher for the Mountaineers as he made 36 starts out of 48 career appearances.
In 2019, Strowd went 5-6 with a 4.73 ERA while also holding opposing batters to a .218 batting average.
Once the 17th round was underway, the Los Angeles Angels used their selection on junior outfielder Brandon White.
The second position player off of the board for West Virginia, White has patrolled the outfield at Monongalia County Ballpark for the past three seasons — maintaining a fielding percentage of .993 over that span.
Also over that span, White has stolen 61 bases, which ranks second in program history.
Darius Hill became the next Mountaineer off of the board as the senior outfielder was drafted by the Chicago Cubs in the 20th round with the 612th overall choice.
A four-year starter for head coach Randy Mazey, Hill ranks No. 1 in program history with 235 starts. Additionally, Hill also holds program records for career at-bats (941) and career doubles (79).
Towards the end of round 28, the New York Yankees selected catcher Chase Illig with the 885th overall selection.
Illig sat out the entire 2019 season due to injury. In the two years prior, Illig managed to develop an on base percentage of .333 over 80 games played.
With the fifth pick in the 34th round, the Detroit Tigers selected pitcher Sam Kessler.
Kessler, a native of Mount Sinai, New York, has primarily pitched out of the bullpen during his three seasons with the Mountaineers, making only two career starts out of 66 appearances.
If he were to sign with the Tigers, Kessler would finish his West Virginia career with a 2.88 ERA, 119 strikeouts and 13 saves.
As juniors, Snyder, Strowd, White, Illig and Kessler all each have one year of eligibility remaining if they were to return to WVU.
Over the three days of the 2019 MLB Draft, eight total Mountaineers were drafted — a new program record. The previous record of six occurred in 2001 and 2014.