2014 Draft: Reds draft RHP Wyatt Strahan No. 94

On the second day of the 2014 First-Year Player Draft, the Reds certainly demonstrated a pattern. Of their eight picks from Rounds 3 through 10, they took only pitchers and infielders.

"The righties are all hard throwers. The infielders fit in with what we always try to do. These are guys that play multiple positions and do a lot of things," Reds senior director of amateur scouting Chris Buckley said.

All five of the pitchers taken on Friday were from the collegiate ranks. Among them was a right-hander in third-round selection Wyatt Strahan from USC.

Strahan, 21, is listed at 6-foot-3 and 205 pounds and has been a starting pitcher for the Trojans the past two seasons after being a freshman reliever.

"He's a big guy and a hard thrower," Buckley said. "He pitched in a great conference. If we miss and he can't start, we certainly think he can pitch late in the ballgame."

The Reds love their power pitchers and Strahan, who had done his research about the organization, was equally thrilled about being picked by Cincinnati.

2014 Draft Central

"I can't even say how excited I was," Strahan said. "I just know from hearing different stories, from a quality guy like Michael Lorenzen, they're pretty good at progressing their pitchers and developing their pitchers. I'm pretty excited to play for the organization."

Lorenzen, another power pitcher, was the 38th overall pick of the Reds last season out of Cal-State Fullerton, and is currently at Double-A Pensacola as the No. 4 prospect in the organization, according to MLB.com. There is another righty that Strahan is particularly fond of, this one in the big leagues.

"I love watching power pitchers, guys like Homer Bailey of the Reds," Strahan said. "The way those types of guys pitch instead of just throws is fascinating to me."

In 16 games, including 15 starts this season, Strahan was 6-5 with a 3.28 ERA. In 104 1/3 innings, he allowed 91 hits and 41 walks while striking out 89. In one outing vs. Utah, he struck out a career-high 13 batters.

Learning how to deal with adversity was the biggest takeaway for Strahan from his final season with the Trojans.

"There were times during the season where it wasn't going my way," he said. "It was more of how you react more than anything. That was the biggest thing I learned. In my last start of the season in the first inning, I gave up two runs solely because of putting guys on base. After that, I went six scoreless. I said 'that's as much as they're going to get today' and I ended up having a decent start."

According to the MLB.com scouting report, Strahan added velocity that has him touching the mid-90s with his fastball. This year, he earned All-Pac 12 conference honors.

Strahan is the first USC player to be picked by the Reds since pitcher Brad Boxberger was taken in the 2009 supplemental first round. Boxberger has since been traded to the Padres.

The Draft concludes Saturday, with exclusive coverage of Rounds 11-40 beginning on MLB.com at 1 p.m. ET.

Slimmed-down infielder goes to Reds in fourth round

Draft Report: Gavin LaValley, HS Third Baseman

Losing weight did not mean losing power for third baseman Gavin LaValley, who has been a star hitter for Carl Albert High School in Midwest City, Okla.

LaValley weighed 270 pounds as a freshman and realized it wouldn't help him with his aspirations to play professionally or in college.

"My sophomore year, I realized I wanted to play baseball and go far in baseball," said LaValley, a former football player. "I just changed my diet and started working out harder to get my body right. I got a shot at third base and [the coach] liked me over there and started putting me there for two seasons."

LaValley is now listed at 6-foot-3 and 235 pounds.

"The power stayed there. It never left," he said. "It just made me a lot faster, agile and mobile. It helped me all around in every aspect of the game."

The Reds made LaValley their fourth-round selection in the First-Year Player Draft on Friday. It marked the first time in this year's Draft that they took a high school player after four college picks. Just before his name was revealed publicly by the Reds, the organization sent him a text message about their intentions.

"I knew it was a dream come true when that happened," LaValley said.

LaValley, 19, led his school to three straight state championships and batted a combined .516/.618/1.126 with 54 home runs and 202 RBIs in 121 games.

This season, LaValley batted .539 with 19 homers and 75 RBIs.

"Gavin is a good high school hitter with the potential to have plus power. I really like this kid's bat," said Reds scout Mike Keenan.

LaValley has a letter of intent signed with the University of Oklahoma.

"I'm going to sign professionally," LaValley said. "I just want to get started in pro ball and make my way to the Majors. I want to get in the system, get comfortable in the system and just get ready for it."

"He could have gone to Oklahoma to play football," Reds senior director of amateur scouting Chris Buckley said. "He's a big high school kid that we'll try him at third base. If he can't, he'll make his way over to first base. But he has the power for the position."

The Draft concludes Saturday, with exclusive coverage of Rounds 11-40 beginning on MLB.com at 1 p.m. ET.

Reds pick college transfer Antone in fifth round

Draft Report: Tejay Antone, Junior College Pitcher

The Reds selected right-handed pitcher Tejay Antone with their fifth-round pick (155th overall) in the First-Year Player Draft on Friday.

Antone spent this year with Weatherford College in Texas after he spent his freshman year at Texas Christian University in 2013. For Weatherford, he was 7-6 with a 2.88 ERA and a team-leading 84 1/3 innings pitched.

During his freshman season at TCU, Antone was used sparingly.

"At the year-end meeting with the TCU coach, he said he saw me as a bullpen guy for them next year [this season]," Antone told the Weatherford College athletics website in April. "I wanted to start in college, so I let him know I was going to transfer to Weatherford College to start and get my innings in."

Listed as 6-foot-4 and 205 pounds, the 20-year-old Antone has a letter of intent signed to pitch next season for Auburn. According to the MLB.com scouting report, he has a 91-93 mph fastball and can touch 95 mph with some sink. He has a changeup, slider and curveball, but the secondary pitches have not drawn praise in the scouting reports.

"He's another big guy with a really good arm," Reds senior director of amateur scouting Chris Buckley said. "He did well at TCU. Our game is just a lot different than college baseball. There is a lot more patience on our side to develop. Their game is about winning. They wanted to put him in the bullpen. Tejay wanted to start and get drafted."

Antone was a 22nd-round pick of the Mets as a high school senior, but elected to go to TCU.

The Draft concludes Saturday, with exclusive coverage of Rounds 11-40 beginning on MLB.com at 1 p.m. ET.

Seton Hall pitcher Lopez taken by Reds

Seton Hall right-handed pitcher Jose Lopez could wind up being a steal for the Reds. Because he did not pitch in 2014 after he had Tommy John surgery on his elbow, Lopez's Draft stock dropped.

As the Reds continued a trend of accumulating college pitching talent Friday, the organization used its sixth-round pick (185th overall) to take the 20-year-old Lopez.

"He would have been a high Draft pick," Reds senior director of amateur scouting Chris Buckley said. "He's already well into his rehab. We're taking a little risk but he wants to come out."

In 2013, Lopez had a 3-3 record and 3.40 ERA in 20 games, including five starts. He had 42 strikeouts and 18 walks over 47 2/3 innings while opponents batted a team-best .180 against him.

"He was 94-97 [mph] with a hard slider," Buckley said. "He got hurt at the end of the fall and tried to rehab it and then had the surgery."

This isn't the first time that the Reds have landed a pitcher from Seton Hall. Reliever Nick Christiani, who was a 13th-round pick in 2009, made his big league debut last season and was on the Opening Day roster this season.

The Draft concludes Saturday, with exclusive coverage of Rounds 11-40 beginning on MLB.com at 1 p.m. ET.

Reds take high school infielder in seventh round

Draft Report: Shane Mardirosian, HS Second Baseman

With their seventh-round pick in the First-Year Player Draft, No. 215 overall, the Reds selected second baseman Shane Mardirosian out of Martin Luther King High School in Riverside, Calif.

"So stoked," Mardirosian posted on Twitter after being picked.

In 103 games over four seasons with the King varsity team, the 17-year-old Mardirosian batted .383 with four homers and 60 RBIs. A left-handed hitter, he batted .347 in 25 games as his team's shortstop.

"We really liked the way he swings the bat," Reds senior director of amateur scouting Chris Buckley said. "He runs very well. It's very hard to find left-handed-hitting middle infielders. It's like finding a left-handed-hitting catcher. It's hard to do for whatever reason."

Currently, Mardirosian has signed with UC Santa Barbara to play collegiate baseball.

The Draft concludes Saturday, with exclusive coverage of Rounds 11-40 beginning on MLB.com at 1 p.m. ET.

Reds draft Rutgers first baseman O'Grady

In the eighth round of the 2014 First-Year Player Draft on Friday, No. 245 overall, the Reds took first baseman Brian O'Grady from Rutgers University.

O'Grady, a 22-year-old from Warminster, Pa., batted .328/.402/.510 with five home runs and 30 RBIs in 54 games this season. He earned all-conference third-team honors.

"It was an unbelievable feeling when I got the call today," O'Grady said on the Rutgers athletics website. "This was my goal and it validates all the hard work put in over the years. It will be an honor to represent Rutgers at the next level, as the program made me into the player I am today. I would like to thank all of my coaches and teammates for all of their support and guidance."

The team leader in homers, triples (five) and slugging, O'Grady was also tied for the lead in hits with 67.

"He's a very good athlete," said Chris Buckley, the Reds' senior director of amateur scouting. "He's played a number of positions. In his junior year, he was a center fielder. When you can get a kid that can play first base and play center field, he's got to be a pretty good athlete."

The Reds have taken seven players from Rutgers in the school's history, including third baseman Todd Frazier in 2007 with the 34th overall pick in the first round.

"I am very happy for Brian," Rutgers head coach Joe Litterio said on the school website. "He has worked very hard for this opportunity and I would like to thank him for his contributions to the program over his four years. We wish him the best of luck going forward." The Draft concludes Saturday, with exclusive coverage of Rounds 11-40 beginning on MLB.com at 1 p.m. ET.

Hartford right-hander selected by Reds

The Reds' ninth-round selection (No. 275 overall) in Friday's Day 2 of the First-Year Player Draft was used to take right-handed pitcher Brian Hunter from the University of Hartford.

Listed at 6-foot-3 and 215 pounds, Hunter mostly started for Hartford. This season in 15 games, including 13 starts, he was 4-8 with a 4.13 ERA.

Over four seasons, Hunter struck out 182 batters -- which is second-most in school history.

Hunter's teammate in the rotation, Sean Newcomb, was the 15th overall selection in the first round by the Angels.

The Draft concludes Saturday, with exclusive coverage of Rounds 11-40 beginning on MLB.com at 1 p.m. ET.

Reds take Ohio lefty to finish Draft Day 2

When the Reds used their 10th-round pick in the 2014 First-Year Player Draft on Friday, they kept it local.

Left-handed pitcher Seth Varner, the 305th overall selection, pitched for Miami University in Oxford, Ohio. A native of Batavia, he attended Clermont-Northeastern High School.

This season in 15 starts, Varner was 7-3 with a 2.85 ERA and one shutout. In 104 1/3 innings, the 22-year-old gave up 95 hits and 25 walks and struck out a school-record 123 batters.

"We're excited about him," Reds senior director of amateur scouting Chris Buckley said. "We just had him at our pre-Draft workout. The kid can pitch. He's a local guy -- we like to do that when we can."

Varner was a first-team All-MAC conference honoree and is the first Miami pitcher to ever win the MAC pitcher of the year award. He was also a third-team Louisville Slugger All-American.

In 2013, Varner was mostly a reliever and the Redhawks' leader in appearances, Varner had a 2-1 record and 5.13 ERA in 21 games, including three starts. He did not allow a home run this season and his 25 strikeouts led relievers on the team.

The Draft concludes Saturday, with exclusive coverage of Rounds 11-40 beginning on MLB.com at 1 p.m. ET.