Baseball: Three 'Eaters drafted

UC Irvine junior center fielder Dominique Taylor was selected in the 15th round by the Kansas City Royals (No. 444 overall) to highlight players with local ties chosen in the Major League Baseball First-Year Player Draft on Saturday.

J.J. Altobelli, the son of Orange Coast College Coach John Altobelli, went in the 18th round (545th overall) to St. Louis, while UCI junior pitcher Matt Whitehouse went in the 19th round to Cleveland (561st overall).

UCI junior pitcher Kyle Hooper went in the 25th round to the Dodgers (754th overall).

Dillon Moyer, who played two seasons at UCI before finishing his collegiate career in 2013 at UC San Diego, was a 38th-round pick of the Dodgers (1,144th overall).

In addition, former OCC pitcher Calvin Drummond was taken in the sixth round on Friday by the Detroit Tigers (186th overall).

Taylor was a first-team All-Big West Conference performer who hit .309 with three home runs and 34 runs batted in. His 42 runs tied for the team lead and he had a team-best 10 steals in 14 attempts for the Anteaters. He transferred to UCI before the 2013 season after playing two seasons at Salt Lake Community College in Utah.

J.J. Altobelli, who played at Woodbridge High in Irvine, hit .276 in 64 games as a senior shortstop for the Oregon Ducks, who finished 48-16 and lost in their own NCAA Regional last week. Altobelli had 24 RBIs and eight stolen bases.

Whitehouse was 5-6 with a 3.29 earned-run average in 2013. The left-hander struck out 84 and walked 18 in 93 innings. In three seasons with the 'Eaters, he was 9-6 with a 2.84 ERA.

Hooper was 1-3 with a 5.45 ERA in 2013, when he struck out 34 in 392/3 innings. His 18 appearances included three starts.

Moyer, who played shortstop at UCSD, hit .298 with one homer and 28 RBIs in 2013. He had 16 doubles and 15 stolen bases. He is the son of former major league pitcher Jamie Moyer.

Drummond, a pitcher on the Pirates' 2009 state championship team, attended Arizona Christian College, an NAIA school, as a senior, though he did not pitch.

He pitched in 2012 at the University of San Diego. This is the fourth time he has been drafted.

These players join UCI junior pitcher Andrew Thurman, who was taken in the second round (40th overall) by the Houston Astros on Thursday.

— From staff reports

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