The St. Louis Cardinals announced they have signed RHP Griffin Roberts, 1B Luken Baker and INF Mateo Gil as the three players signed their professional contracts today at Busch Stadium.
Roberts, 21, the Cardinals Competitive Balance Round A selection out of Wake Forest University, is a 6-foot-3, 210 lb. right-handed pitcher, who broke the Demon Deacons’ career (12.39 K/9 IP) and single-season (13.50 K/9 IP in 2017) records for strikeouts per nine innings.
As a junior in 2018 in his first year as a starting pitcher, Roberts was named Second Team All-Atlantic Coast Conference and a three-time ACC Pitcher of the Week, going 5-4 with a 3.82 ERA (96.2 IP) in 14 starts. His ACC-leading 130 strikeouts ranked 9th in the NCAA, while his strikeout total was the most by a Demon Deacon in more than 25 years and second-most in program history behind Mike Buddie’s 138 in 1992.
Roberts was originally selected by the Minnesota Twins in the 29th round of the 2017 draft after converting eight saves his sophomore season, but did not sign.
Baker, 21, the Cardinals Second Round Compensatory Pick out of Texas Christian University, is a 6-foot-4, 265 lb. first baseman who hit .347 (181-for-572) with 28 home runs and 129 RBI in 145 career games for the Horned Frogs. A prolific home run hitter, Baker hit a home run per every 12.6 at-bats his junior year and once every 18 at-bats in 145 games throughout his college career. He reached base safely in 134 of his 145 career games.
At Oak Ridge (Texas) High School, Baker was the 2015 Gatorade National Player of the Year, a Baseball America First-Team All-American, and won the 2014 Under Armour High School Home Run Derby and Junior Select home run derby during MLB All-Star Week in Minnesota. He was originally selected by the Houston Astros in the 37th round of the 2015 draft, but did not sign.
Gil, 17, the Cardinals third round pick out of Timber Creek High School in Keller, Texas, is a 6-foot-2, 190 lb., shortstop. The right-handed-hitting infielder is the son of former Major League infielder Benji Gil, who played eight seasons with the Texas Rangers (1993-97) and Anaheim Angels (2000-03). Gil is a Rawlings Perfect Game 3rd Team All-American (Texas All-Region 1st Team). A two-way player drafted as a shortstop, Gil batted .390 with 13 doubles, six triples, six home runs and stole 23 bases his senior year. Serving as his team’s closer, Gil featured a low-to-mid 90s fastball. He has signed his college letter of intent to Texas Christian University.
For a full list of Cardinals draft picks and signees, refer to the following list:
2018 FIRST-YEAR PLAYER DRAFT – FINAL RECAP (BOLD = SIGNED)
Rd., Player (overall pick) Pos. B-T Ht Wt. School Hometown
- Nolan Gorman (19) 3B L-R 6-1 210 Sandra Day O’Connor (Ariz.) High School Phoenix, Ariz.
- CBA. Griffin Roberts (43) RHP R-R 6-3 205 Wake Forest University Midlothian, Va.
- Luken Baker (75) 1B R-R 6-4 225 Texas Christian University Spring, Texas
- Mateo Gil (95) SS R-R 6-2 190 Timber Creek (Texas) High School Keller, Texas
- Steven Gingery (123) LHP R-L 6-2 190 Texas Tech University Huntington Beach, Calif.
- Nick Dunn (153) 2B L-R 5-10 175 University of Maryland Sunbury, Pa.
- Edgar Gonzalez (183) RHP R-R 6-1 200 Fresno State University Newark, Calif.
- Brendan Donovan (213) 3B L-R 6-1 195 University of South Alabama Enterprise, Ala.
- Lars Nootbaar (243) LF L-R 6-3 210 University of Southern California El Segundo, Calif.
- Matt Duce (273) C L-R 5-11 190 Dallas Baptist University Sierra Vista, Ariz.
- Kevin Woodall, Jr. (303) 1B R-R 6-6 240 Coastal Carolina University Georgetown, S.C.
- Chris Holba (333) RHP R-R 6-3 210 East Carolina University O’Fallon, Ill.
- Francisco Justo (363) RHP R-R 6-4 205 Monroe College (N.Y.) Bronx, N.Y.
- Colin Schmid (393) LHP L-L 6-1 195 Appalachian State University New Bern, N.C.
- Brandon Riley (423) CF L-R 6-0 170 University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill Burlington, N.C.
- Mike Brettell (453) RHP R-R 6-3 195 Central Michigan University Fonthill, Ontario (Canada)
- Samuel “Evan” Sisk (483) LHP L-L 6-2 209 College of Charleston Chester, S.C.
- Kyle Leahy (513) RHP S-R 6-5 200 Colorado Mesa University Boulder, Colo.
- Cole Aker (543) RHP R-R 6-2 205 University of Tampa Kernersville, N.C.
- Josh Shaw (573) 2B R-R 6-1 195 St. John’s University Wayne, N.J.
- Parker Kelly (603) RHP R-R 6-1 235 University of Oregon Portland, Ore.
- Michael Perri (633) SS R-R 6-3 195 University San Francisco Alameda, Calif.
- Kevin Vargas (663) SS R-R 6-1 175 International Baseball Academy Ceiba, Puerto Rico
- Michael Baird (693) RHP R-R 6-5 210 Southern Illinois University-Carbondale Parker, Colo.
- Eli Kraus (723) LHP L-L 6-1 190 Kent State University Medina, Ohio
- Troy Montemayor (753) RHP R-R 6-1 160 Baylor University San Antonio, Texas
- Connor Coward (783) RHP R-R 6-0 200 Virginia Polytechnic Institute (Virginia Tech) Pittsburgh, Pa.
- Perry DellaValle (813) RHP R-R 6-0 195 Seton Hill (Pa.) University North Royalton, Ohio
- Justin Toerner (843) CF L-L 5-10 165 California State University-Northridge Temecula, Calif.
- Alerick Soularie (873) RF R-R 6-0 175 San Jacinto-North (Texas) JC Humble, Texas
- Kendrick Calilao (903) OF R-R 6-1 200 The First Academy (FL) Kissimmee, Fla.
- Ty Cohen (933) RHP R-R 6-1 195 Florida Institute of Technology (Florida Tech) Woodstock, Ga.
- Brandon Purcell (963) C R-R 6-1 205 Georgia College and State University Glennville, Ga.
- Chris Rivera (993) RHP R-R 5-9 175 Long Beach State University Watsonville, Calif.
- Benito Santiago (1,023) C L-R 6-0 190 University of Tennessee Pembroke Pines, Fla.
- Liam Sabino (1,053) 3B R-R 6-0 191 University of Pittsburgh New York City, N.Y.
- Cole Kreuter (1,083) 3B R-R 6-0 190 University of California-Irvine Rancho Mirage, Calif.
- Christian Caudle (1,113) C R-R 6-4 230 Texas A&M University-Kingsville Klein, Texas
- Jaden Hill (1,143) RHP R-R 6-3 210 Ashdown Senior (Ark.) High School Ashdown, Ark.
- Zack Gahagan (1,173) 3B R-R 6-1 195 University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill Fletcher, N.C.
- Andrew Warner (1,203) RF R-R 6-2 225 Columbia (Mo.) College Lee’s Summit, Mo.