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Williams drafted by Rays, ninth UK player picked

LEXINGTON, Ky. -- Kentucky senior catcher Michael Williams has been picked in the 30th round of the 2012 MLB Draft by the Tampa Bay Rays, going No. 932nd overall, it was announced on Wednesday afternoon.

Williams is now the ninth UK player to be drafted in 2012, helping the Wildcats eclipsing the previous school record of seven in 2008. Vanderbilt in 2011 and Auburn in 2009 own the Southeastern Conference record for most players drafted from one school in league history.

Williams has joined fellow UK draft picks, including outfielder Brian Adams (eighth round; Padres), catcher Luke Maile (eighth round; Rays), left-hander Taylor Rogers (11th round; Twins), third baseman Thomas McCarthy (18th round; White Sox), right-hander Tim Peterson (20th round; Mets), southpaw Alex Phillips (21st round; Tigers), outfielder Cameron Flynn (23rd round; Marlins) and left-hander Jerad Grundy (26th round; Twins).

A native of Knoxville, Tenn., Williams enjoyed a career year behind the plate in 2012 while helping the Wildcats to a school-best 45 wins. Williams, who was drafted in 2011 by the San Francisco Giants, hit .290 during his senior year with 10 doubles, three homers and 35 RBI. In his four-year UK career, Williams hit .270 (119-for-441) with 26 doubles, 11 homers and 69 RBI. After making seven starts and playing in 15 games as a freshman and hit .241 as a sophomore. During his junior season, Williams hit .264 with 11 doubles, seven homers and 23 RBI.


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