Royals select two players on first day of MLB first-year player draft

Kansas City Royals

FILE – In this Feb. 17, 2017, file photo, a baseball is shown on the grass at the Cincinnati Reds baseball spring training facility in Goodyear, Ariz. Major League Baseball rejected the players’ offer for a 114-game regular season in the pandemic-delayed season with no additional salary cuts and told the union it did not plan to make a counterproposal, a person familiar with the negotiations told The Associated Press. The person spoke on condition of anonymity Wednesday, June 3, 2020, because no statements were authorized. (AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin, FIle)

KANSAS CITY, Mo. (Press Release) – The Kansas City Royals made two selections on the first day of the 2020 First-Year Player Draft, including the fourth overall pick, Asa Lacy, a left-handed pitcher from Texas A&M University. Lacy is the fourth player chosen fourth overall in Royals history, joining Christian Colón (2010), Mike Stodolka (2000) and Jeff Austin (1998). In the Competitive Balance Round A (32nd overall), the Royals selected Nick Loftin, a shortstop from Baylor University.

Lacy, 21, is the highest-selected baseball player in Aggies history, surpassing Jeff Granger, who the Royals selected fifth overall in 1993. Lacy went 3-0 with a 0.75 ERA (2 ER in 24.0 IP), 46 strikeouts (17.3 K/9), just eight walks (3.0 BB/9) and a .111 opponents’ average in four starts as a junior, prior to the season being suspended due to the coronavirus outbreak. In his second start of the season on Feb. 21 vs. Army, Lacy recorded a career-high 14 strikeouts in just 5.0 innings.

Loftin, 21, was named preseason Big 12 Player of the Year by Baseball America and hit .298 in 14 games, before the 2020 season was suspended due to the coronavirus outbreak. As a sophomore in 2019, Loftin made hit .323 with a .502 slugging percentage in 53 starts – all at shortstop – for the Bears. He was named First-Team All-Big 12, and started games at five positions (shortstop, second base, third base, left field and right field) for the U.S. collegiate national team last summer.

The 2020 First-Year Player Draft will resume tomorrow with rounds two through five, beginning at 4:00 p.m. CT. The royals have four selections tomorrow: Nos. 41, 76, 105 and 135.

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