When the deadline passed Sunday for amateur baseball draft players to decide whether or not to sign, UCLA coach John Savage was busy with camp. It also felt good.
Among the 13 players who signed letters of intent last fall, 12 will attend UCLA. It’s unheard of for the Bruins to keep intact a class ranked No. 4 by Baseball America.
«This year we had 10 leaving and we have 14 entering. Everything went well, ”Savage said. “It could literally be the first time. It just doesn’t happen. We feel very lucky. We love our class.
The only player UCLA lost was pitcher Eric Silva of JSerra High. He was a fourth-round pick for the San Francisco Giants and signed for nearly $ 1.5 million.
Weeks ago, most people said that JSerra’s outstanding left-handed pitcher Gage Jump would never perform on the UCLA campus. He’s coming. So is Mira Costa’s Thatcher Hurd, a converted receiver whose future on the mound could take him places.
“He had a phenomenal school year,” Savage said of Jump. “Just a dominant year from the first launch. He’s a guy who should be competing for a spot in the weekend rotation. “
UCLA needs hitters, and they come at shortstop Cody Schrier of JSerra, outfielder Nick McLain of Beckman and outfielder Malakhi Knight of Marysville, Washington.
As for pitching, the plan is to transition closer Max Rajcic to a starting role. Competition for other places of departure will be abundant. Pitching depth should be a strength for the 2022 Bruins.
“We have a lot of competition,” Savage said.
Outfielder Kenny Oyama, a transfer from Loyola Marymount through El Toro High, joins UCLA, and the Bruins are expected to add a transfer to college to complete their recruiting class of 14.