A rundown of local players selected in the 2021 MLB draft:
Nebraska RHP/SS Spencer Schwellenbach (Saginaw Heritage)
Vitals: 6 feet 1, 200 pounds.
Drafted: Second round (No. 59 overall) to Atlanta Braves.
The buzz: Schwellenbach’s, the 2021 Big Ten Player of the Year and 2021 John Olerud Two-Way Player of the Year, hit .284 with six homers and 40 RBIs at shortstop, while also going 3-1 and a 0.57 ERA in 31⅔ innings. Schwellenbach, 21, didn’t make an appearance on the mound until his junior year, allowing just one run in 17 of his 18 appearances and finished the season with a Big Ten leading 10 saves. He was drafted by the 34th round by the Cleveland Indiana out of high school, but the Michigan Gatorade Player of the Year and Mr. Baseball elected to play for the Huskers.
Michigan LHP Steven Hajjar
Vitals: 6-5, 215.
Drafted: Second round (No. 61 overall) to Minnesota Twins.
The buzz: Hajjar was an All-Big Ten first-team selection in 2021 after going 4-2 with a 3.09 ERA in 81.2 innings, while striking out 110 for U-M. The 20-year-old lefty has a four-pitch arsenal, highlighted by a fastball that sits in the 89-91 mph range and tops out at 94. Scouts rave about his consistent low-80s change-up and he adds a solid curveball and slider. Many believe he has major upside if he can show more command on his pitches and increase his velocity.
Trenton HS RHP Micah Ottenbreit
Vitals: 6-4, 190.
Drafted: Fourth round (No. 114 overall) to Philadelphia Phillies
The buzz: The 6-foot-4 Michigan State commit, has a solid three-pitch mix with a 94 mph fastball, mid-70s curveball, and low 80s change-up. Ottenbreit, one of the younger pitchers in the class turning 18 a few weeks ago, is expected to increase his velocity to the mid-90s once he adds weight to his 190-pound frame.
Eastern Michigan RHP Justin Meis
Vitals: 6-2, 160.
Drafted: 10th round (No. 283 overall) to Pittsburgh Pirates.
The buzz: A sleeper on most draft boards, Meis earned national recognition when he threw eight scoreless innings versus College World Series Champion Mississippi State their longest scoring drought of the season. His pitching arsenal includes a fastball low 90s, breaking ball in the low 80s, and change-up in the high 80s. He finished his junior year 4-6 with a 4.64 ERA in 73.2 innings of work and 81 strikeouts. In the Cape Cod league, Meis, 21, is having an impressive showing with a 2.08 ERA, 17 strikeouts, and 0.808 WHIP.