With the 27th overall pick in the draft, the Washington Nationals have selected right-handed pitcher Mason Denaburg from Merritt Island High School out of Merritt Island, Florida. In mock drafts, Denaburg was projected to go 27th by ESPN and 27th by Baseball America.
Denaburg is one of the more athletic players in this year’s draft. The 18-year-old not only plays baseball, but also is a kicker and punter in football. This year for Merritt Island, he played as a pitcher, catcher and outfielder, but excelled on the mound, posting a 5-1 record with a 0.99 ERA while striking out 73 batters and walking only 10 in 35 1⁄3 innings pitched. He’s also coming off a strong summer in 2017 in which he helped USA Baseball’s 18-and-under team win a gold medal.
Denaburg has shown that he can throw the heat, as he has hit 97 mph a few times and sits around 94. He also has a power breaking ball that features a nasty break and finish to it, and can throw a changeup as well. Denaburg still has the chance to play two ways at the University of Florida, but the Nationals hope he will sign with them and continue to work on his craft at the pro level.
Get a look at Denaburg on the mound here: