Mariners complete draft by focusing on pitching

SEATTLE – Most of the focus was naturally on the Mariners’ No. 2 overall pick, Danny Hultzen, but Tom McNamara, Seattle’s scouting director, is a firm believer that the bottom of the MLB draft is crucial.

“I sent out a reminder yesterday and today to our guys: Keep your sleeves rolled up and keep grinding, because there are big-leaguers in there,” he said.

The Mariners concluded their three-day draft Wednesday with rounds 31-50, in which the clear focus was on pitching.

After starting the day with three college left-handed pitchers (Kyle Hunter of Kansas State, Ryan Hawthorne of Loyola Marymount and Jeremy Dobbs of Austin Peay), the Mariners selected right-handed pitchers in 10 of their final 17 selections.

Over the three days, the Mariners selected 28 pitchers – 22 right-handers and six southpaws. They also loaded up on catchers, taking seven, the most since also taking seven in 2001.

“I wouldn’t say it was a goal, but we’re happy,” McNamara said. “We do have a good group of catchers from this draft, which is great.”

The Mariners also took nine infielders and seven outfielders among their 51 selections, choosing players from 22 states in addition to Canada, Germany, Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands.

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