The A’s used the sixth overall pick Thursday in the Major League Baseball draft to select A.J. Puk, a left-handed pitcher from the University of Florida.
Puk is listed at 6-foot-7 and 230 pounds and said to throw a high-90s fastball. This season for the Gators, he is 2-3 with a 3.21 ERA, 50 hits allowed and 95 strikeouts in 70 innings.
The pick was the A’s highest since 1998, when they took another left-handed pitcher, Mark Mulder, second overall. It’s the second consecutive year the A’s have used their first-round pick on a player from Florida, following shortstop Richie Martin last year.
Some draft projections had Puk going as high as first. He ended up being the first college pitcher taken. The A’s have two more selections on Day One of the fraft, numbers 37 and 47 overall.