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Paul Skenes, Dylan Crews chosen in MLB Draft; first-ever teammates taken with top two picks

10 months 2 weeks 1 day ago Sunday, July 09 2023 Jul 9, 2023 July 09, 2023 4:27 PM July 09, 2023 in News
Source: WBRZ

SEATTLE, Wash. - LSU pitcher Paul Skenes was taken first overall by the Pittsburgh Pirates Sunday in the 2023 MLB Draft. Right after Skenes, outfielder Dylan Crews was taken No. 2 overall by the Washington Nationals.

The selection of Skenes is just the second time an LSU player would be the No. 1 overall selection in the MLB Draft. Right-handed pitcher Ben McDonald was the No. 1 overall pick in 1989 by the Baltimore Orioles.

Skenes and Crews going back to back, is the first time players from the same school were taken first and second overall in the MLB Draft.

Skenes, the 2023 Dick Howser Award winner, the D1 Baseball National Player of the Year, and the SEC Pitcher of the Year, compiled a 13-2 record and a 1.69 ERA in 122.2 innings with 20 walks and an SEC-record 209 strikeouts. He finished No. 1 in the nation in strikeouts (209), strikeouts per nine innings (15.33) and WHIP (0.75). 

A product of Lake Forest, Calif., Skenes finished No. 2 in the nation in ERA (1.69), No. 3 in strikeout-to-walk ratio (10.45), and No. 5 in hits allowed per nine innings (5.28). He was voted the Most Outstanding Player of the College World Series, as he was 1-0 in two starts with a 1.15 ERA in 15.2 innings, allowing two runs on seven hits with two walks and 21 strikeouts. 

Skenes posted a win over Tennessee (June 17) in LSU’s opening game of the CWS, working 7.2 innings and allowing two runs on five hits with one walk and 12 strikeouts. He then faced Wake Forest in the CWS semifinal round (June 22) on just four days’ rest and limited the Deacons to no runs on two hits in 8.0 innings with one walk and nine strikeouts.

Good on the diamond, the LSU right hander was also great off of it. Skenes, a member of the 2023 SEC First-Year Academic Honor Roll, pledged $10 for every strikeout he recorded this season to Folds of Honor, a nonprofit organization that provides educational scholarships to the spouses and children of military and first responders who have died or been disabled.

Crews, a junior from Longwood, Fla., batted .426 (110-for-258) for LSU’s 2023 National Championship team with 16 doubles, two triples, 18 homers, 70 RBI and 100 runs. He was voted to the College World Series All-Tournament Team, batting .375 (12-for-32) in the CWS with one double, one triple, one homer, three RBI and 11 runs scored. 

The 2023 Golden Spikes Award winner and the SEC Male Athlete of the Year, Crews finished No. 1 in the nation in runs scored (100), No. 1 in walks (71), No. 2 in on-base percentage (.567), No. 2 in base hits (110) and No. 3 in batting average (.426). He completed the year with a reached base streak of 75 games, which included all 71 games of this season and the last four games of the 2022 season. 

Crews is a two-time member of the SEC Community Service Team for his exemplary work in the Baton Rouge area with families affected by autism. He was also named to the 2023 SEC Academic Honor Roll.

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