UNLV players chosen in this year’s MLB Draft
This year UNLV has six baseball players in the 2018 MLB First-Year Draft. Kansas City Royals and Tampa Bay Rays chose Kyle Isbel and Alan Strong while Nick Ames (Detroit Tigers), Nick Rodriguez (Seattle Mariners), Trevor Horn (San Francisco Giants), and Bryan Menendez (Arizona Diamondbacks) were called the last day of the 40 round draft. The last time UNLV saw a draft pick this awesome was seven draftees in 1996 and 2004.
Ames and Rodriguez helped UNLV rank third in the nation for hits, fifth in doubles, sixth in batting average, seventh in slugging percentage, 16th in scoring and 18th in home runs and runs. They’ve also been recognized as the Mountain West All-Conference Second Team this season. Ames is from Tucson, Arizona and led the Rebels in RBI and home runs placing sixth and 15th in the nation. He’s also ranked 56th in slugging percentages and 63rd in total bases. He played 155 games in three years with UNLV.
Rodriguez is from San Fernando, California and has ranked in the top 100 of six NCAA stats including 38th in hits, 53rd in hits per game, and 59th in total bases. Finishing second on the team in at-bats, RBI and multiple-hit games, Rodriguez had 14 multiple-RBI games. Menendez is from Bellflower, California. He won an MW All-Conference Second Team performer. He also broke the program’s single-season record for saves.
Head coach Stan Stolte says, “It’s great having six guys called upon by MLB teams that came here never having been drafted. It just shows that kids come here and get better. Higgy, Pat and Greg did a great job developing these guys. They are quality kids. Obviously, Rodriguez and Menendez being seniors will sign. I can’t speak for Nick or Trevor, but I will support whichever route they take. It’s a great day for the Rebel baseball program.”
In the past 35 years UNLV Baseball had at least one player drafted by an MLB Team. UNLV had at least three players selected in 2013. Isbel is the highest draft pick from UNLV this year and there have been 26 Rebels drafted since Stolte and associate head coach Kevin Higgins joined the program in 2011. Starting in 2016, 13 Rebels have been drafted since Stolte been head coach.