Photo: North Dakota State

MLB Draft Preview: North Dakota

Draft : : State Preview
David Rawnsley        
Published: Wednesday, May 22, 2013

In the weeks leading up to the draft, Perfect Game will be providing a detailed overview of each state in the U.S., including the District of Columbia, as well as Canada and Puerto Rico. These overviews will list the state's strengths, weaknesses and the players with the best tools, as well as providing scouting reports on all Group 1 and 2 players as ranked in Perfect Game's state-by-state scouting lists.  Please visit this page for all of the links to Perfect Game's 2013 Draft Preview content.



North Dakota State-by-State List

There were no players drafted and signed out of North Dakota in 2012 and it’s possible that that scenario will repeat itself again in 2013, with the only obvious player in the state with that potential being North Dakota State right handed pitcher John Stratka. Straka has been the top prospect in the state for the past three years and has been draft eligible the last two years and not been selected, however.

That should change in 2014, however, as University of North Dakota right handed pitcher Andrew Thome could become the highest draft pick out of the state in history, a record currently held by former Minot High School and Kansas Jayhawk first baseman Zac Elgie. Elgie was a 12th
 round pick of the A’s in 2008. Thome (6-5, 4.14 in 78 innings in 2013) is a 6-foot-4, 210-pound native of Minnesota who has a present low- to mid-90s fastball. He threw a no-hitter on Opening Day this spring to start the North Dakota season.


OVERALL RATING
 (1-to-5 scale): 2

BEST COLLEGE TEAM:
 U. North Dakota
BEST HIGH SCHOOL TEAM: Minot HS

BEST OUT-OF-STATE PROSPECT, North Dakota Connection:
 None
Top 2014 Prospect: Andrew Thome, rhp, U. North Dakota
Top 2015 Prospect: Daniel Lockhart, ss, U. North Dakota

HIGHEST DRAFT PICKS

Draft History:
Zac Elgie, 1b, Minot HS (2008, Athletics/12th round)
2008 Draft: Zac Elgie, 1b, Minot HS (Athletics/12th round)
2009 Draft: Ryan Bollinger, 1b, Magic City HS, Minot (Phillies/47th round)
2010 Draft: Andy Leer, ss, Mary University (Twins/25th round)
2011 Draft: Alex Kreis, rhp, Jamestown University (Nationals/35th round)
2012 Draft: Nick Anderson, rhp, Mayville State (Brewers/35th round)

2012 DRAFT OVERVIEW

College Players Drafted/Signed:
 1/0
Junior College Players Drafted/Signed: 0/0
High School Players Drafted/Signed: 0/0


PROSPECT TO WATCH

JOHN STRAKA, rhp, North Dakota State (Sr.)
Many expected Straka to be drafted and turn professional in 2012 after he went 7-4, 2.61 in 110 innings with a school record 92 strikeouts. That didn’t happen, however, and the fifth year senior returned to North Dakota State and was even better in 2013, going 7-2, 1.86 in 97 innings, with 85 strikeouts and only 10 walks allowed. A strong and mature 6-foot-3, 220-pounds, Stratka pounds the strike zone with an 88-92 mph fastball and a solid slider and topped out at 94 mph while pitching in relief in the Alaskan Summer League in 2012. Stratka is 23 years old, having red-shirted in 2010 after undergoing Tommy John surgery, so he would be an ideal sign for a team looking for an experienced hurler to drop right into a bullpen at the A ball level.
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