Gominsky leads quartet of Gophers selected on Day 2 of MLB draft

Gominsky, O’Shea, Pettersen and Matyas all selected. All but Matyas have a year of eligibility left.

Samuel Gordon

The Houston Astros made junior outfielder Justin Gominsky the first Gopher draftee in the 2011 MLB Draft, selecting the Mahtomedi, Minn., native in the 11th round.

After missing the majority of the 2010 season with a knee injury, Gominksy rebounded nicely in 2011. He started 49 games and finished with a .307 batting average, which was second on the team.

If he elects to sign with the club, he will join 2010 draftee Mike Kvasnicka as former Minnesota players in the AstrosâÄô farm system. 

The Cincinnati Reds selected junior first baseman Nick OâÄôShea in the 24th round.  OâÄôShea led the Gophers in home runs and RBIs en route to All-Big Ten Third Team honors.

OâÄôShea said Tuesday that he will likely not hear any official offer for several days but said that he will consider signing, depending on the negotiating process.

AJ Pettersen was drafted soon after, when the Minnesota Twins made him their 25th round selection. Minnesota stocked up on college middle infielders and pitchers in this yearâÄôs draft breaking form to an extent. The Twins are notorious for drafting athletic high schoolers, specifically outfielders, and college pitchers.

All three players have one year of eligibility remaining, should they choose to return to school rather than sign with their respective clubs.

Scott Matyas was the final Gophers player selected on Day 2 of the draft, and the first Minnesota pitcher. The Detroit Tigers selected Matyas in the 27th round. He had been drafted previously by the New York Yankees and Milwaukee Brewers in recent drafts, but did not sign.

While Gominsky, OâÄôShea, Pettersen and Matyas are the only Gophers to be drafted through Day 2 of the draft, they arenâÄôt the only selections with Minnesota ties.

Oregon junior pitcher Madison Boer, formerly of Eden Prairie High School was selected in the second round by the Minnesota Twins.  Boer went 3-6 with a 2.27 ERA in 18 appearances (12 starts) for the Ducks.

The Cleveland Indians drafted third baseman Jordan Smith from St. Cloud State University in the ninth round.

Pitcher Ben Strong, a product of Stillwater High School, was selected in the 10th round by the Milwaukee Brewers.  The senior went 5-1 with a 3.61 ERA with 70 strikeouts in 72 1/3 innings.

St. OlafâÄôs Ben Hughes was taken in the 10th round by the Colorado Rockies.  The St. Louis Park, Minn., native was the Minnesota Intercollegiate Athletic ConferenceâÄôs Pitcher of the Year in 2011. The junior went 7-1 with a 2.50 ERA, and recorded 83 strikeouts in 57 1/3 innings of work.

Cretin-Derham Hall graduate Jacob Esch, currently of Georgia Tech was selected in the 11th round by the Florida Marlins.

Senior pitcher Austin Malinowski of Centennial High School was selected by the Twins in the 16th round.

Other notable Minnesota draft-related news Tuesday included former Chaska High School standout Brad Hand, who made his major league debut for the Florida Marlins. The lefty was picked in the second round back in 2008.

The draft will conclude Wednesday with rounds 31-50. Check mndaily.com/sports for continued updates and interviews with the draftees.