Tenth Round: Pirates Draft RHP Beau Sulser

The Pittsburgh Pirates have drafted Dartmouth right-handed pitcher Beau Sulser in the tenth round of the 2017 MLB draft. Sulser is a college senior, and it’s likely that he was drafted to save slot money for additional picks. The Pirates did the same thing last year when taking Matt Anderson, giving the right-handed pitcher a $10,000 bonus.

The same move with Sulser would save the Pirates $124,200. If they used that money on a pick after the 11th round, they could sign someone for up to $249,200, since the first $125,000 on each pick after the 10th round doesn’t count toward the bonus pool.

Sulser has split time between the rotation and the bullpen in his college career, and was the Ivy League Pitcher of the Year this year. He posted a 1.40 ERA in 45 innings, with a 52:5 K/BB ratio, making seven starts.

Sulser wasn’t in Baseball America’s top 500, but rated 12th in a three star class in New England. He had Tommy John surgery as a sophomore, but was able to return healthy during his junior year. He works by moving his pitches to either side of the plate, pitching more around the barrel rather than trying to attack hitters.

The main appeal here is the savings the Pirates can get, which they’ll either be able to use on earlier picks, or on guys after the 10th round.

You can find his player page here.

  • Darkstone42
    June 13, 2017 7:20 pm

    Sidney Crosby threw a curveball for a strike with his first pitch. Draft him.

  • Sulser actually had TJS at the end of his sophomore year. Then missed his entire third year. Has pitched the last two years, his 4th and 5th, as a redshirt junior and a redshirt senior. Has improved dramatically since TJS.
    .
    Ironically his brother also pitched for Dartmouth and also was drafted in his 5th season, following TJS.

  • Doesn’t sound like an inspired or inspiring pick – Tim seems to be suggesting he was chosen primarily so Pirates could save money to use on other picks later in the draft not because he is talented and an MLB-prospect in his own right. Well this draft is very unpredictable, even a lot of 1st rounders never make it to “The Show”.

    • I’m not sure that is accurate. A number of top Ivy pitchers have done well in MLB. He has improved dramatically since recovering from TJS. Pitched better this year than some of the Ivy pitchers who pitched in MLB. For example, he was a lot better this year than Kyle Hendricks, who also pitched for Dartmouth, was the year he was drafted.

    • Of course he was drafted because they are sure he will sign on the cheap. You want 4 prep players with high upsides at the top of your draft, you get guys like this. But among the subset of college seniors, he is one of the better ones.

      The draft, and the International free agents, are a place where you try to give your team a chance to get lucky, not one where you expose it to the risk of being unlucky. By that I mean that, in the draft you have to work just as hard, or harder, on the throwaway picks than you do culling through the top 100/200/500 lists. Because if you find a guy in that group who can play, it’s a bonus that cancels out the bad luck of a top pick flaming out for one reason or another.

      In the IFA market, some guys go for huge amounts of money. But teams only have a limited pool. So if you sign a guy for big bucks, and he doesn’t develop, you have blown a whole year.

      • I think Sulser will surprise some people. Not likely he will make the majors since less than 10% of 10th round draft picks do, but he will likely outpitch a lot of guys drafted ahead of him.

  • domdidominic
    June 13, 2017 6:51 pm

    Man, How can you go wrong with a pitcher from New Hampshire. Baseball mecca (see Locke, Jeff).

  • You have his 2016 stats. His 2017 was much better. 45 IP, 31 H, 5 BB 52 K 6-1, 1.40. Dartmouth probably doesn’t play a lot of games. He had TJ surgery in 2015.

  • He shut out Miami on 2 H and 1 BB with 10 K’s over 7 innings in Miami this year. His brother pitches in the Indians’ system. That’s the U, not the Redhawks.

  • Struck out 52, walked 5 in 45 innings. ERA of 1.40. Apparently had an injury during the season – only pitched in 7 games, all starts. Threw a 7 inning shutout in Dartmouth’s final game of the year, however, so he was apparently healthy down the stretch.

  • Darkstone42
    June 13, 2017 6:24 pm

    Ivy League pitcher of the year, for whatever that’s worth.

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