Puckett becomes second Blue Raider taken in 2017 draft

Photo by Darwin Moore / MTSU Sidelines

Former Middle Tennessee pitcher Cody Puckett became the second Blue Raider taken in the 2017 Major League Baseball Amateur Draft on Wednesday afternoon when he was selected by the Oakland Athletics in the 3oth round (891st overall).

Puckett joins fellow senior Riley Delgado as the only Blue Raiders taken in the draft. Delgado was taken on Tuesday in the ninth round by the Atlanta Braves.

Puckett was a teammate of Delgado’s at Columbia State Community College for his first two seasons of college baseball. The left-hander was a second team All-TJCAA player as a freshman and sported a 4-4 record with 65 strikeouts in 11 starts in his career as a Charger.

The Smithville, Tennessee, native showed great versatility in his Blue Raider career, pitching as both a starter and a reliever throughout his two seasons.

As a junior, Puckett appeared in 17 games (all in relief) and tied for the team-lead in wins with three. Puckett had 30 strikeouts and collected three saves that season.

Puckett was Middle Tennessee’s most reliable starter as a senior in 2017. He won three more games and led the team in strikeouts with 71. Puckett also had a couple outings where he was unhittable, tying his career-high in single-game strikeouts with 10 twice.

One of his best performances came against the Rice Owls on May 13 when he tossed seven scoreless frames en route to a 13-1 MTSU win.

Puckett is now the tenth active Blue Raider in professional baseball, joining Nate Hoffman (Independent League), Hunter Adkins (Miami Marlins), Matt Blackham (New York Mets), Bryce Brentz (Boston Red Sox), Zac Curtis (Seattle Mariners), Michael McKenry (Tampa Bay Rays), Ronnie Jebavy (San Francisco Giants), Heath Slatton (San Francisco Giants) and classmate Riley Delgado (Atlanta Braves).

The next likely destination for Puckett is the A’s rookie ball team, the Arizona League A’s. Their schedule is TBD.

Follow MTSU baseball reporter Anthony Fiorella on Twitter at @A_Fiorella74 for more coverage.

To contact Sports Editor Rusty Ellis, email sports@mtsusidelines.com.

For more sports stories, follow us on Facebook at MTSU Sidelines and on Twitter and Periscope at @Sidelines_Sport.

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