Just five picks later, another Florida catcher is off the board in the 2017 MLB Draft. Junior Mark Kolozsvary was selected by the Cincinnati Reds with the 197th pick of the draft.
Mike Rivera, Kolozsvary’s fellow behind-the-plate Gator, was taken at the end of the sixth round by the Cleveland Indians. Kolozsvary is the third Florida player to be selected today, following Rivera and Dalton Guthrie, who was picked up by the Philadelphia Phillies. Kolozsvary is the fourth Gator overall to go, as Alex Faedo was a first round selection last night.
Kolozsvary showed his potential to scouts while seeing more time than anticipated at catcher this season. With Rivera missing the final six weeks of the season, and JJ Schwarz playing on base due to injuries to Jonathan India and Dalton Guthrie, Kolozsvary was able to take advantage of some additional playing opportunities.
In 16 SEC games this year, Kolozsvary hit .320 with 13 RBI while throwing out five of seven attempted base-stealers. For the season, he is batting .270 with 26 RBI, three homers, and 20 runs scored in 45 games (35 starts) - all of which are career highs for the junior.
Should Kolozsvary decide to turn pro, there is a chance that all three of Florida’s current catchers - Kolozsvary, Rivera, and Schwarz - could be off of the 2018 roster. Schwarz has yet to have his name called today, but he is anticipated to be drafted sometime this evening.
The MLB Draft continues today through round ten, with rounds ten-and-up being selected tomorrow.