WKYT | Lexington, Kentucky | Sports

Two more Wildcats taken in MLB Draft

SECAUCUS, N.J. -- Kentucky senior southpaw Chris Rusin was selected with the 140th overall pick in the fourth round of the 2009 MLB Draft by the Chicago Cubs, it was announced Wednesday

Rusin, a native of Canton, Mich., becomes the second UK player taken in the first four rounds of 2009, as fellow left-handed pitcher James Paxton was selected in the supplemental first round Tuesday night by the Toronto Blue Jays with the 37th overall pick. Only three times in school history have two UK players been selected in the top four rounds of the MLB Draft, as first-team All-American outfielder Sawyer Carroll and right-handed pitcher Scott Green both went in the third round of the 2008 MLB Draft. In 1992, pitching prospects Rob Henderson and Mark Thompson were each selected in the second round.

A 6-foot-2, 195-pounder, Rusin earned a 7-4 record and a 4.20 ERA in 2009, striking out 108 in a club-best 94.1 innings. While making 13 starts in 2009, Rusin hurled four complete games, holding opponents to just 27 walks and a .258 opponent batting average. Rusin exits Kentucky as one of the best pitchers to ever pitch in Lexington, ranking among the school career leaders in wins (2nd; 23), games started (4th; 45), complete games (10th; 8), innings pitched (3rd; 302.1) and strikeouts (2nd; 274). With 108 strikeouts in 2009, Rusin ranked eighth all-time in single-season strikeouts, becoming just the 10th player in school annals to fan 100 or more in a season. Rusin had a breakout season in 2008, earning a 6-3 record and a 3.33 ERA, earning first-team All-Southeastern Conference accolades as UK’s Friday night starter.

The draft will continue Wednesday, tentatively scheduled to go through the 30th round. The draft will conclude Thursday with the 31st through 50th rounds, beginning at 11:30 a.m. ET.

Kentucky sophomore shortstop Chris Wade has been selected 338th overall in the 2009 MLB Draft, going to the Florida Marlins in the 11th round, it was announced Wednesday afternoon.

Wade, a Lexington, Ky., native and 2009 second-team All-Southeastern Conference selection at shortstop, becomes the third UK player to be selected in the 2009 MLB Draft, joining lefties James Paxton (Toronto Blue Jays; No. 37; 1st round) and Chris Rusin (Chicago Cubs; No. 140; 4th round).

Wade, in his third year after redshirting during the 2007 season, hit .313 (56-for-179) in 50 starts during the 2009 season, pounding out 10 doubles, one triple, six homers and 41 RBI, leading the team with 14 steals in 17 attempts. The six-foot, 160-pounder out of Lexington Christian Academy, has been known throughout the last two years as one of the better defensive shortstops in the nation, fielding .962 in 2009, totaling 73 putouts and 130 assists, committing just eight errors, despite playing much of the year on an injured hamstring.

While starting all but four games of his collegiate career at shortstop, a total of 113 games, Wade has batted .304 (123-for-405), with 77 runs scored and 34 doubles, adding 11 homers and 93 RBI, stealing 20-of-25 bases. In 2008, as a freshman, Wade led the SEC with 24 doubles in 63 games, hitting .296 and driving in 51 RBI.

After the SEC coaches voted Wade second team All-SEC in 2009, he became the first UK shortstop to earn All-SEC honors since Dickie Parsons in 1961. Wade is one of only four UK players all-time to earn first or second-team All-SEC honors as a shortstop in the 105-year history of the program.


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