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Pair of Huskers and Nebraska signees earn MLB selections

Nebraska junior Jesse Wilkening (8) hits a home run against Iowa on April 13, 2018 at Haymarket Park in Lincoln, Neb. (KHGI)

The Nebraska baseball team had two players and two signees selected during the final day of the MLB Draft on Wednesday.

Junior Jesse Wilkening and senior Luis Alvarado each heard their name called during a day that featured rounds 11-40 of the draft. The Philadelphia Phillies drafted Wilkening in the 14th round, while the Los Angeles Angels picked Alvarado in the 17th round.

In addition, Husker signees Spencer Schwellenbach and Bo Blessie were each drafted on Wednesday. Schwellenbach, a right-handed pitcher from Saginaw Heritage High School in Saginaw, Mich., was drafted in the 34th round by the Cleveland Indians with the 1,033rd overall pick. Blessie, a right-handed pitcher from Robert E. Lee High School in Midland, Texas, was taken in the 36th round by the Washington Nationals with the 1,091st pick.

During the second day of the MLB Draft on Tuesday, Scott Schreiber was drafted by the Houston Astros in the ninth round with the 282nd overall pick.

Jesse Wilkening – Philadelphia Phillies (14th Round – 407th Overall Pick)

Wilkening led the Huskers with a .372 batting average in 2018 en route to second-team All-Big Ten honors. Wilkening, who had at least one hit in 15 of NU’s last 16 games, compiled 10 multi-hit performances during that stretch. His .372 batting average and team-high 56 RBIs each ranked fourth in the Big Ten this season. Wilkening also led the team in doubles (14), while ranking second on the team in hits (74), home runs (9), runs scored (45) and total bases (117). Before coming to Nebraska, Wilkening was drafted in 2015 by the Arizona Diamondbacks in the 28th round after a successful prep career at Hanover Central High School in Cedar Lake, Ind.

Luis Alvarado – Los Angeles Angels (17th Round – 511th Overall Pick)

Alvarado, who had been previously drafted twice, converted from reliever to starter in 2018. Alvarado, who threw a team-high 70.0 innings this season, led the Huskers in strikeouts (65) and recorded the lowest opposing batting average (.256) among NU’s starters. He went 3-7 with a 4.89 ERA in 14 starts in 2018 after earning 10 saves in 16 relief appearances in 2017. Alvarado was drafted in 2017 by the Seattle Mariners in the 13th round after being selected in the 2014 MLB Draft by the Boston Red Sox in the 33rd round out of high school.

The deadline for drafted players, other than college seniors, to sign with a team is July 6. Players who have exhausted their college eligibility have until one week before 2019 MLB Draft to sign.

Courtesy UNL Sports Information

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