Redshirt junior pitcher Evan Marquardt pitches the ball during the Red and White scrimmage game on Oct. 2 at Ball Diamond at First Merchants Ball Park. The team's season starts in the spring. Kara Biernat, DN
Cincinnati Reds select Ball State pitcher Evan Marquardt in MLB Draft
Ball State baseball has been represented in the Major League Baseball First-Year Player Draft for the third straight year.
This time, it was right-handed pitcher Evan Marquardt who heard his name called.
The Cincinnati Reds selected the 6-foot-6, 259 pound redshirt junior in the 20th round with the 598th pick.
"We always knew Evan had a pro talent, and it's really exciting for any kid to get drafted," Ball State head coach Rich Maloney said. "His stuff grades out, so it's just one of those things where I think his best days are in front of him."
The Midland, Michigan, native finished his 2018 campaign with a 6.51 earned run average (ERA) and a pair of saves.
While the ERA isn't jaw-dropping, Marquardt has shown the ability to whip the ball past the batters he faces. In 47 innings pitched last season, Marquardt struck out 60 batters, which shows the potential.
With a fastball that was clocked in the low-to-mid 90's — topping out at 94 mph — and a solid breaking ball, he possesses a number of tools scouts find promising.
"He had the makings of everything; it was just he never could put it all together, and that's why they took him because there's hope that at some point it just clicks and takes him over the top," Maloney said. "... There were probably three or four games where he was pretty special."
He was named Mid-American Conference Pitcher of the Week back in May when he tallied a career high nine strikeouts in seven innings pitched in a 9-1 victory against Toledo.
Marquardt is the ninth Ball State player to be drafted in the last five years.