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Mendoza taken in third round, Flowers picked in fourth round

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Florida State junior third baseman Drew Mendoza was drafted in the third round by the Washington Nationals in the MLB Draft on Tuesday afternoon.

Mendoza, who was the 94th overall pick, leads FSU in a most major offensive categories – 16 home runs, 55 RBI, 59 runs scored, .482 on-base percentage and .631 slugging. His .320 batting average is third on the team.

There was some pre-draft speculation as to whether Mendoza projects as a third baseman or first baseman at the pro level. Mendoza played first base for FSU in 2017 and then moved across the infield to third base in 2018 and ’19. When the Nationals announced the pick, though, they did so with Mendoza as a third baseman.

Mendoza was viewed as a potential first-round pick in 2016 coming out of high school. But he told the Osceola just days before enrolling that his dream was to play at FSU and not ride the bus in the minor leagues. Last month, Mendoza earned his degree from FSU.

Center fielder-reliever J.C. Flowers was taken in the fourth round (124 overall) by the Pittsburgh Pirates. He was announced as a right-handed pitcher, perhaps a sign that the Pirates intend to use him on the mound. Flowers was 0-0 with a 1.52 ERA, recording 11 saves and pitching 23.2 innings (with 22 strikeouts) in 2019.

But Flowers is also a versatile selection as he hit .278 with 13 home runs, 53 RBI, 44 runs scored and a .378 on-base percentage. Those numbers are up dramatically from his 2018 hitting totals (.218 batting average, 0 HR, 14 RBI and 26 runs).

Left-hander Drew Parrish was selected in the eighth round by the Kansas City Royals. Parrish is 8-5 with a 5.07 ERA and recorded 112 strikeouts with just 29 walks in 81.2 innings.

Shortstop Mike Salvatore was taken in the ninth round by the Seattle Mariners. Salvatore leads the team with a .341 batting average and 22 doubles. He also has seven home runs, 22 doubles, 53 runs scored and a .430 on-base percentage.

The final day of the MLB Draft is Wednesday, which will be a busy afternoon and evening with rounds 11-40.

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