CLEMSON, S.C. – Three 2018 Tigers and three Clemson signees were selected on the third and final day of the MLB draft on Wednesday. The three draftees joined first-round pick Seth Beer (Astros), fifth-round pick Ryley Gilliam (Mets), sixth-round pick Ryan Miller (Diamondbacks) and eighth-round pick Chris Williams (Twins) as the seven 2018 Tigers chosen in the MLB draft. Clemson’s seven draft picks tied for 13th most in the nation and tied for third most in the ACC.
On Wednesday, sophomore lefthander Jake Higginbotham was selected in the 11th round (No. 322 overall) by the Braves, senior outfielder Drew Whartonwas picked in the 30th round (No. 908 overall) by the Cubs and sophomore lefthander Mitchell Miller was chosen in the 31st round (No. 931 overall) by the Angels.
Higginbotham (Hoschton, Ga.) had a 6-1 record, 3.47 ERA, .236 opponents’ batting average and 63 strikeouts in 80.1 innings pitched over 16 starts in 2018. In two active seasons at Clemson, he is 9-1 with a 3.80 ERA, .255 opponents’ batting average and 91 strikeouts in 113.2 innngs pitched over 24 appearances (23 starts). Higginbotham was the first Tiger selected by the Braves since 2017 (Ryan Miller).
Wharton (Suwanee, Ga.) went from a backup his first three seasons to an everyday starter in 2018. He hit .255 with seven homers, 12 doubles, a triple, 41 RBIs, 31 runs and seven steals in 63 games. In his career, he batted .245 with seven home runs, 15 doubles, a triple, 61 RBIs, 38 runs and nine steals in 137 games. Wharton was the first Tiger chosen by the Cubs since 2011 (Scott Weismann).
Mitchell Miller (Covington, Ga.) appeared in four games in relief in 2018 and allowed two hits and no runs in 2.0 innings pitched. He has pitched 5.2 innings over 10 relief appearances in two seasons at Clemson. Miller was the first Tiger drafted by the Angels since 2017 (Jeremy Beasley).
Three Tiger signees were drafted on Wednesday, joining outfielder Parker Meadows, who was drafted in the second round by the Tigers on Monday, and infielder Charles Mack, who chosen in the sixth round by the Twins on Tuesday, as the five Tiger signees selected in the 2018 draft. On Wednesday, righthander Davis Sharpe was selected in the 34th round by the Pirates, lefthander Justin Wrobleski was drafted in the 36th round by the Mariners and catcher Adam Hackenberg was chosen in the 39th round by the Royals.