Travis Jankowski of Stony Brook was selected 44th overall in the 2012 MLB Draft on Monday night by the San Diego Padres, the highest a player for the Seawolves has ever been drafted. Per MLB.com only one player from Stony Brook, current Texas Rangers closer Joe Nathan, has ever played in the major leagues.
Prior to Jankowski's selection Monday Stony Brook had never had a player selected earlier than the third round. Jankowski's selection came in what is commonly called the 'Sandwich Round,' the free-agent compensation picks given to teams between the first and second rounds.
Jankowski is a speedy left-handed hitting outfielder who "reminds scouts of Jacoby Ellsbury." He was the America East Conference Player of the Year for 2012 and was named a second-team All-American by Collegiate Baseball Newspaper.
Prior to the draft Jankowski was ranked No. 33 on MLB.com's prospect list. In a pre-draft interview with MLB.com Jankowski admitted he did not expect this when he began his career at Stony Brook.
"Honestly, if someone asked me three years ago if I'd be projected this high, I would've said, 'No, not a chance.' It's always been my dream since I was little to play professional baseball, so it's really exciting," he said. "I'm trying to just finish out college first, and then after the season, I can enjoy it a little more. But as for now, you just kind of put it in the back of your mind and go out and play."
These are heady times for Stony Brook. The Long-Island based Seawolves advanced to the Super Regional Round of the 2012 NCAA Baseball Tournament on Monday with a 10-6 victory over Central Florida.
Rounds 2-15 of the draft will be held Tuesday. The draft will be streamed lived beginning at noon ET. Rounds 16-40 will be held on Wednesday, and will again be streamed live by MLB.com beginning at noon.