The Marlins really did dig deep in the heart of Texas to find perhaps the next great power pitcher from the Lone Star State. With the second overall pick in Thursday's First-Year Player Draft, the Marlins selected Tyler Kolek from Shepherd, Texas -- population of less than 2,500.
Kolek is best compared to right-hander Josh Beckett at the same age, as he's a country-strong, durable right-hander from Texas with tremendous arm strength and the chance to one day lead a starting rotation.
ght-hander Tyler Kolek would make a three-hour roundtrip drive three days a week to work out, a dedication to his craft that caught the attention of the Miami Marlins organization. Kolek grew up on a cattle ranch in the small town of Shepherd, Texas, but Thursday night he became the Marlins' selection as the second overall pick in the 2014 draft. "Kid worked all his life," said Stan Meek, Miami's vice president of scouting. "I think he has a lot of humility, which is a great character trait for a young man in our business. That says a lot about his character and how good he wants to be."
Justin Twine, who also starred in football and track, stands out more for his athleticism than his baseball skills at this point
Blake Anderson, a Southern Miss signee who just wrapped up his prep career at West Lauderdale, became the first Mississippian to be selected in this year’s Major League Baseball First-Year Player Draft Thursday night. Anderson was taken with the 36th overall pick in the Competitive Balance A round by the Miami Marlins.
Brady Aiken came off the board early, as the Astros snatched him up with the first overall pick. That left the Marlins with three options; they could either take developed college pitcher Carlos Rodon from North Carolina State, prep fireballer Tyler Kolek, or a hitter. Carlos Rodon looked like he was the perfect fit. He is a dominant lefty, and he also has Cuban in his blood. The Marlins are located near Little Havanah and they have a ton of Cuban followers. Rodon was born in Miami, and it seemed that was the storybook ending. The Marlins went against the grain, though, and selected Kolek. The monster right-hander from Shepherd, Texas will fit well in the Marlins farm system, and should be able to move up the minor league system in a hurry.
The last time the Miami Marlins had the second overall pick in baseball's amateur draft they selected a hard-throwing right-handed pitcher from rural Texas in 1999. All Josh Beckett did was help them win the World Series in 2003, pitching a shutout in the clinching victory. The Marlins are banking on another strong-armed Texan after selecting Tyler Kolek with the second pick in the annual talent grab Thursday.
Tyler Kolek on growing up on a ranch: "It’s different than city life. Makes you a lot tougher than most high school kids." #Marlins— Tom D'Angelo (@tomdangelo44) June 6, 2014
GM Dan Jennings on Kolek: "You gotta love taking a pitcher with 2 Ks in his name." #MLBDraft— Miami Marlins (@Marlins) June 6, 2014
Wow. #Marlins go Kolek. Literally everyone I spoke to today said Rodon. Dozens of industry sources wrong. That's the draft.— Chris Cotillo (@ChrisCotillo) June 5, 2014
A surprise pick from the Marlins, taking HS RHP Tyler Kolek as the No. 2 overall pick— Rhett Bollinger (@RhettBollinger) June 5, 2014
marlins pull an upset and take 100-mph throwing tyler kolek— Jon Heyman (@JonHeymanCBS) June 5, 2014
Tyler Kolek to the Marlins second overall. Big surprise. Mocks are busted.— Jeff Passan (@JeffPassan) June 5, 2014
If Marlins end up taking Kolek, that's who the scouts wanted vs ownership pushing for Rodon. Good to see scouts winning out if it happens.— Sahadev Sharma (@sahadevsharma) June 5, 2014
Awesome to know that one of my good friends Justin Twine has been recently drafted to the Marlins! Congrats man!!— Trey Neal (@TreyNeal96) June 6, 2014