SEATTLE, Wash. – The Seattle Mariners selected infielder Evan White out of the University of Kentucky with their first selection (17th overall pick) in the 2017 First-Year Player Draft, Director of Amateur Scouting Scott Hunter announced tonight.
White, 21, is a USA Baseball Golden Spikes Award Semifinalist and was named 2nd-Team All-SEC and was selected All-SEC Defensive Team at 1st base. He was named 2nd-Team Preseason All-America by both Collegiate Baseball and PerfectGame.org, as well as 3rd -Team Preseason All-America by the National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association and D1 Baseball.
“We’re very excited to add Evan White to the organization,” Hunter said. “His addition will give us another athletic player whose character and baseball acumen will allow him to have success. He understands and values what the Seattle Mariners are all about, both on and off the field.”
During his recently-completed junior season at the University of Kentucky, he hit .373 (79×212) with 48 runs, 24 doubles, 1 triple, 10 home runs, 41 RBI and 25 walks with a .453 on-base percentage and a .637 slugging mark in 53 games (52 starts). The 6-for-3, 205-pound infielder spent last summer as a member of USA Baseball’s Collegiate National Team where he started 15 of the team’s 19 games, primarily at first base with spot starts in the outfield.
In three seasons with the Wildcats, he hit .356 (233×655) with 119 runs, 51 doubles, 5 triples, 17 home runs, 109 RBI, a .414 on-base percentage and a .527 slugging mark in 159 games. After his sophomore season, he was named to the 2016 USA Baseball Collegiate National Team, earned a Rawlings Gold Glove (1B), was 2nd-Team All-SEC (1B) and All-SEC Defensive Team (1B). He also earned 2 SEC Player of the Week honors in 2016 (3/7/16 and 3/28/16).
Prior to his time at Kentucky, he was the All-Ohio Baseball Player of the Year after setting school records for hits in a season (50), career doubles and RBI. He was rated the 13th best Ohio prospect available in the 2014 MLB Draft at the completion of his playing career at Gahanna Lincoln High School. He earned 1st-team All-State, All-Region and All-District honors as a junior and senior and all-district and all-conference honors as a sophomore and honorable mention accolades as a freshman. He led team to the regional championship as a junior and senior and three district championships overall.
The Mariners will have one more selection tonight with the 55th pick of the draft. The 2017 Draft continues tomorrow with rounds 3-10 (starts at 10:00 am PT) and rounds 11-40 on Wednesday (starts at 9:00 am PT).