Nebraska will most likely greet two recent draft picks on next year's baseball team.
Derek Burkamper, a right-handed pitcher from Muscatine, Iowa, was picked in the 20th round and Ryan Boldt of Red Wing, Minn., was chosen in the 22nd, both by the Boston Red Sox, on the final day of the Major League Baseball Draft in New Jersey.
Both Burkamper and Boldt said they will join the Huskers next fall and wait for the draft in three years when they become eligible again.
Burkamper is 4-0 with a 46-3 strikeout-to-walk ratio in the early Iowa high school baseball season that runs through the summer. The 6-foot-2, 170-pound standout said he couldn't wait to put on a Husker uniform. "I'll give the draft a chance in three years," he said.
Boldt, who was projected to go as high as the second round in the draft, said he would become a Husker, too. The 6-foot-2 center fielder, who played for the under-18 Team USA and was MVP of the Perfect Game All-American game last fall, recently had arthroscopic knee surgery and missed most of his senior season at Red Wing High.
"I went through graduation and I sat around to see about the draft, for one day, then I thought I'd be a Husker and get a college education," Boldt said. Boldt is a cousin of Nebraska second baseman Pat Kelly, who led NU in hits this season and was impressive in the field.
"I'll play summer ball as soon as I can and I'll look forward to playing at Nebraska," Boldt said. "It was going to take a pretty high draft pick for me to go pro right now. But I still get to play baseball, and that's the important part for me."
Waverly pitcher Sam Tewes, projected as a fifth- or sixth-round pick, was chosen in the 22nd round by the Toronto Blue Jays. The Journal Star Super-State pitcher said he will accept his scholarship offer from Wichita State. The Shockers recently fired longtime coach Gene Stephenson, but Tewes said he was committed to playing for WSU.
"There's a good flavor of Nebraska there with Taylor Doggett and Tanner Kirk of Lincoln Southeast and A.J. Ladwig of Millard West and Casey Gillaspie of Millard North," Tewes said.
Nebraska right fielder Chad Christensen, a first-team all-Big Ten outfielder this year and first-team all-conference shortstop last year, was chosen in the 25th round by the Minnesota Twins. He was drafted in the 35th round last year but returned to the Huskers, leading the team this season in hitting (.364), on-base percentage (.436), runs (45) and triples (3), and he was second on the team in hits (82).
Christensen said he was excited to be going to a team that was close to his home of Cedar Rapids, Iowa. "They have a great reputation for developing their own talent, and I am willing to play any position they want me to play, and that will likely be in the outfield," he said.
Huskers Illustrated reported Nebraska junior college catcher recruit Ryan Miller of San Bernardino Valley CC in California would sign with the San Diego Padres, who selected him in the 14th round. Creighton junior Federico Castagnini, a third baseman, was selected by Baltimore in the 30th round.