June 6, 2014
HATTIESBURG, Miss. -
Southern Miss right-handed pitcher Bradley Roney was the first Golden Eagle chosen in the 2014 Major League Baseball First-Year Player Draft Friday when he was taken in the eighth round (253rd pick overall) by the Atlanta Braves.
Roney, who was named to the All-Conference USA second team this spring following the Eagles' 35-25 campaign, posted a 2-0 record with a 1.24 earned run average and 12 saves. He appeared in 18 games and fanned 38 in 36 1/3 innings with just 16 walks, giving up only five runs and 18 hits.
In three seasons at Southern Miss, the Wetumpka, Ala., native collected 30 saves which is tied for the school career mark along with Collin Cargill (2008-11), who is currently in the Miami Marlins organization, playing for the Triple-A New Orleans Zephyrs. Roney's 12 saves from this season is good for fifth on the university's single-season chart.
Roney is the third Golden Eagle to be taken in the Top 10 rounds in the last four drafts, with the others being B.A. Vollmuth (3rd round, Oakland Athletics) in 2011 and Andrew Pierce (8th round, St. Louis Cardinals) last June.
This is the second time Roney has been drafted, after being chosen in the 18th round (545th pick) by the Baltimore Orioles in the 2011 MLB First-Year Player Draft.
Roney is the third player associated with the program taken in this year's draft. A pair of Golden Eagle signees, catcher Blake Anderson of West Lauderdale High School (Meridian, Miss.), was taken in the Competitive Balance Round A by the Miami Marlins and was the 36th player taken overall Thursday night, while left-handed pitcher, Justin Steele of George County High School (Lucedale, Miss.), was taken in the fifth round (139th pick overall) by the Chicago Cubs on Friday.
The draft concludes Saturday in its third and final day, beginning at 12 noon CT, when the 30 MLB organizations will work through rounds 11-40.