Wilson Wastes No Time, Signs With Cardinals


Quickness got Oxnard College shortstop Jack Wilson drafted in the ninth round by the St. Louis Cardinals--his quick bat, good speed and strong arm.

But nothing is quicker than his pen. Wilson signed Wednesday with Cardinals' scout Chuck Fick before the lower rounds of the draft were even completed.

"My goal was to go in the top 10 rounds and that happened," said Wilson, who attended Thousand Oaks High. "I want to get out there as soon as I can."

Wilson, who spurned a scholarship to Texas Tech, will leave Friday for the Cardinals' mini-camp in Jupiter Beach, Fla. He will be assigned either to New Jersey of the short-season Class-A New York-Penn League or Johnson City, Tenn., of the rookie Appalachian League.

Wilson, who can run to first base in 4.1 seconds, batted .406 with 19 doubles, five home runs and 50 runs batted in for Oxnard. As a Thousand Oaks senior in 1996, he broke Kurt Stillwell's record for hits in a season.

Few players from the region were drafted Wednesday during rounds 26-50, although the Cleveland Indians stayed busy, taking senior outfielder Chris MacMillan of Cal State Northridge in the 26th round and right-handed pitcher Ruben Escobar of The Master's College in the 29th.

MacMillan joins left-handed senior pitcher Carey Novits as the only Matador players drafted. Novits was drafted in the 22nd round Tuesday, also by the Indians.

Three players who left Northridge when the program was temporarily dropped last summer were drafted, including two Wednesday. First baseman Casey Cheshier of San Jose State was the 39th-round pick of the Atlanta Braves and outfielder Terrmel Sledge of Long Beach State was the 45th-round choice of the Cincinnati Reds. Left-handed pitcher Erasmo Ramirez of Cal State Fullerton was drafted Tuesday.

First baseman Traviss Hodge of Highland High was drafted by the Pittsburgh Pirates in the 34th round and catcher Joe Yingling of Camarillo by the Detroit Tigers in the 35th.


Draft Board

Players from the region selected in the amateur baseball draft that began Tuesday (listed by name, school, position, round selected and drafting organization). *--*

Player School Pos. Rd. Team Paul Avery Pepperdine LHP 15th Dodgers Casey Cheshier CS Northridge 1B 39th Braves Gabe Crecion UCLA RHP 15th Yankees Ryan Earl Thousand Oaks High LHP 22nd Tigers Ruben Escobar Master's College RHP 29th Indians John Ennis Monroe High RHP 14th Braves Victor Hall Monroe High OF 12th Diamondbacks David Hawk ex-Chatsworth High LHP 25th Pirates Traviss Hodge Highland High 1B 34th Pirates Darrell Hussman Arizona RHP 4th Reds David Matranga Pepperdine SS 6th Astros Chris MacMillan CS Northridge OF 26th Indians Carey Novits CS Northridge LHP 22nd Indians Will Ohman Pepperdine LHP 8th Cubs Andy Shibilo Pepperdine RHP 23rd Cardinals Terrmel Sledge Long Beach St. OF 45th Reds Barry Tolli Newbury Park High OF 8th Tigers Jeff Weaver Fresno State RHP 1st Tigers Jack Wilson Oxnard College IF 9th Cardinals Joe Yingling Camarillo High C 35th Tigers Barry Zito Pierce College LHP 3rd Rangers


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