ROCHESTER, MM – The 2013 Major League First-Year Player Draft finished up last weekend and the Northwoods League was well represented. A total of 149 current Northwoods League players and alumni were selected in this year’s draft. Three former players were taken in the first round and two players were picked in the second round.
Shortstop Hunter Dozier (Stephen F. Austin) became the highest draft pick in Willmar Stingers history when the Kansas City Royals took him in the first round, 8th overall. Dozier played 59 games for the Stingers in the summer of 2012. He hit 6 HR, drove in 40 RBI and stole 10 bases.
Jonathon Crawford (Florida) was drafted by the Detroit Tigers in the first round and 20th overall. The right hander pitched for the Madison Mallards in 2011. Crawford struck out 51 batters in 38 innings that summer.
Phillip Ervin (Samford) was the Green Bay Bullfrogs highest draft pick ever as he was selected in the first round, 27th overall by the Cincinnati Reds. Ervin spent the 2011 season in Green Bay where he hit .305 in 39 games while also hitting 6 home runs.
The Rochester Honkers and the Eau Claire Express each had a league high 16 players drafted in this year’s draft. The Honkers’ highest pick came in the fifth round, when second baseman Tony Kemp (Vanderbilt) was taken 137th overall. Kemp played for the Honkers in 2011 and hit .292 in 35 games.
The highest pick for the Express came in the 10th round when Garrett Custons (Air Force Academy) was chosen by the Toronto Blue Jays with the 295th overall pick. Custons spent the 2010-2011 seasons with the Express. He hit .333 in 16 games during the 2011 season.
The Northwoods League has more teams, plays more games, and draws more fans than any other Summer Collegiate Baseball League in North America. The League has 16 teams in Wisconsin, Minnesota, Iowa, Michigan, and Ontario. The 2013 season will mark the 20th season of Northwoods League baseball. 102 former players have gone on to play Major League Baseball. Notable alumni of the league include Curtis Granderson (Yankees), Chris Sale (White Sox), Max Scherzer (Tigers), Josh Willingham (Twins) and Jordan Zimmermann (Nationals).