June 8, 2007
UC Santa Barbara senior first baseman Robbie Blauer, senior right-handed pitcher Brian Tracy, and junior left-hander Chuck Huggins were selected on the second day of the 2007 Major League Baseball First Year Player Draft Friday.
Blauer was drafted by San Diego in the 18th round, while Tracy was chosen by Pittsburgh two rounds later and Huggins went to Arizona in the 33rd round of the amateur draft.
The Gauchos¹ MVP in 2007, Blauer was selected by the Padres with the 567th overall pick. A year after transferring from Orange Coast College, the Huntington Beach, Calif. native led the team and finished second in the Big West Conference batting .398 this season. Blauer also led the squad in hits (84), doubles (17), RBI (43), total bases (117), slugging percentage (.555), and on-base percentage (.480) and was the only player to start all 54 games for Santa Barbara in 2007.
Tracy was chosen by the Pirates in the 20th round with the 608th overall selection after finishing second among Gaucho hurlers with a 5.03 ERA this season. The native of Presto, Pa. posted a record of 1-3 in 19 appearances, with 26 strikeouts. Tracy made 29 starts during his four-year career at UCSB and logged a total of 187 innings. It comes as no surprise that Tracy was selected by the Pirates organization, where his father Jim is the manager.
"All of the guys are very deserving and I am very happy for them," said UCSB head coach Bob Brontsema of Blauer and Tracey. "I expect them to have great pro careers. They¹ve been great for our program and I am sure they will be great for their organizations."
The Arizona Diamondbacks took the second Gaucho pitcher of the day, selecting Huggins in the 33rd round with the 1,001 overall pick. A transfer from Trinity College in Redwood City, Calif. Huggins was voted the 2007 Newcomer of the Year by his teammates after finishing with team-best 6-2 record in 17 appearances for the Gauchos this season. He finished the year with an ERA of 5.50 in eight starts with 42 strikeouts in a total of 54 innings pitched.
"They (Major League clubs) were calling Chuck in the 12th round and they were talking money that was not sufficient for him," Brontsema said. "He¹s worthy of a higher pick than that and I don¹t anticipate losing him."
In addition to the three current Gauchos, recruit Bryce Tafelski, a catcher from Santa Ynez (Calif.) High School, was taken in the 42nd round by the Cleveland Indians.