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Tenth Round: Pirates Draft Notre Dame Right-Handed Pitcher Cameron Junker

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With their tenth round pick, the Pittsburgh Pirates drafted right-handed pitcher Cameron Junker out of Notre Dame. He’s 21 years old and stands in at 6’5″, 220 pounds.

Junker barely pitched as a freshman, then struggled badly as a sophomore, posting an 8.74 ERA in 35 innings, with a .290 BAA and a 41:25 SO/BB ratio. As a full-time starter this season, he improved his stats dramatically, cutting his ERA down to 4.19 in 77.1 innings, with 73 strikeouts and a .234 BAA. Those stats were skewed by two very poor starts to end his season. While the walks were still high (40), he showed major improvements in his control. That being said, he profiles as a bullpen arm. His fastball sits in the low-90s and gets up to 96 MPH, with 78-80 MPH slider that projects to be an average pitch. That two-pitch mix could play up in shorter roles.

This draft spot comes with a $143,900 bonus slot.

Here’s his player page.

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John Dreker
John Dreker
John started working at Pirates Prospects in 2009, but his connection to the Pittsburgh Pirates started exactly 100 years earlier when Dots Miller debuted for the 1909 World Series champions. John was born in Kearny, NJ, two blocks from the house where Dots Miller grew up. From that hometown hero connection came a love of Pirates history, as well as the sport of baseball. When he didn't make it as a lefty pitcher with an 80+ MPH fastball and a slider that needed work, John turned to covering the game, eventually focusing in on the prospects side, where his interest was pushed by the big league team being below .500 for so long. John has covered the minors in some form since the 2002 season, and leads the draft and international coverage on Pirates Prospects. He writes daily on Pittsburgh Baseball History, when he's not covering the entire system daily throughout the entire year on Pirates Prospects.

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