Slenker and White Selected in MLB Draft

Richard Slenker and Harrison White. (photos by Sam Rubin '95, Yale Sports Publicity)
Richard Slenker and Harrison White. (photos by Sam Rubin '95, Yale Sports Publicity)

NEW HAVEN, Conn. -- Yale seniors Richard Slenker and Harrison White were selected in the 2017 Major League Baseball Draft on Wednesday.

Slenker, a third baseman and team captain this season, was selected in the 28th round by the Houston Astros. White, an outfielder, was chosen in the 31st round by the Miami Marlins. 

"I'm so happy for Slenk and Harrison," said Yale head coach John Stuper, who has seen 47 of his players at Yale move on to professional baseball.  "They finished off great careers in style and now get to chase another dream. They are two more in a long line of players from our program to move on to pro ball, and we are extremely proud of them." 

White finished third in Ivy League play with a .479 on-base percentage and sixth in batting average (.377).  Slenker hit .342 over 50 games this season and drove in 40 runs.  

Slenker and White both earned All-Ivy Second Team honors after the 2017 conference season.  They were a part of the 2017 Yale team that won a school-record 34 games, an Ivy League championship and two games in the NCAA Tournament before being eliminated by Oregon State -- the top overall seed in the tournament.

Last year, righthander Chasen Ford was drafted by the San Diego Padres in the 27th round of the 2016 draft. Pitcher Rob Cerfolio was drafted by the Los Angeles Dodgers in the 2013 MLB Draft, but returned to Yale for his final season in 2014. 

Cerfolio's selection represented the ninth straight year that a Yale player was selected, the longest consecutive stretch of draft selections by any school in the Ivy League at the time.

Brandon Josselyn, the 2009 Ivy League Pitcher of the Year, was drafted in June 2009 by the Seattle Mariners. Left-handed pitcher Craig Breslow, the captain of Yale's 2002 squad, has spent 12 seasons on a Major League roster and currently plays for the Minnesota Twins.  

Yale's Ryan Lavarnway, the 2007 NCAA batting and slugging percentage champion, was drafted in the sixth round of the 2008 MLB amateur draft by the Boston Red Sox.  He is playing professionally for the Oakland A's triple-A affiliate and has spent five seasons in the big leagues playing for Boston, Baltimore and Atlanta.       

Report filed by Ernie Bertothy, Yale Sports Publicity