Three Charlotte baseball players drafted during MLB All-Star Weekend | Sports
Last weekend, Major League Baseball (MLB) held its annual freshman draft and the Charlotte 49ers called up three of their players. Infielder Nate Furman, first baseman David McCabe and pitcher Spencer Giesting were all selected in the 2022 MLB Draft, joining three 49ers active in the minor leagues.
Furman and McCabe join minor leaguers Josh Maciejewski, Bryce McGowan and Aaron McKeithan as Charlotte’s MiLB representatives. Giesting is yet to sign at this point.
“Our three different players have invested everything they can, not only in the sport of baseball, but also in the University and in playing for ‘9 Across the Chest,'” said head coach Robert Woodard. “Our coaching staff and their teammates couldn’t be more excited for Nate, David and Spencer.
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The first 49er selected was 2022 star Furman, who found a way to build an already impressive freshman season with even more playing time. The Cleveland Guardians selected Furman in the fourth round of the draft with the 121st pick. Furman raised his batting average from .301 to .371 in coming home to score 67 times this season.
The second 49er selected in the draft came just four picks after Furman, with longtime Charlotte star McCabe being selected as the 125th overall pick. The Atlanta Braves selected the Canadian native in the fourth round. McCabe was one of the players Woodard was shocked to see go undrafted in the 2021 MLB Draft.
During his three years with the 49ers, McCabe made a name for himself, being one of the most recognizable players on the program. McCabe hit .341 during his time in Charlotte playing 96 games. He added 30 homers, 96 RBIs and was walked 70 times.
“I told them both [Furman and McCabe] that our coaching staff will be there for their Major League debut because we all believe it will happen for them,” Woodard said.
The third and final 49er selected in the 2022 MLB Draft was Giesting, who is coming off an impressive throwing season where he primarily played as an ace for Charlotte.
The Arizona Diamondbacks, a team known for identifying and selecting strong pitching talent such as Max Scherzer, Trevor Bauer, Archie Bradley and Wade Miley, selected Giesting with the second pick of the 11th round, the 318th overall pick in the repechage.
During his 2022 season, Giesting had incredible execution of his off-speed arsenal with a 49% smell rate for his curveball, 45% for his slider and 41% for his change.
During the year, Giesting went 7-4 in 75 innings with a 3.72 ERA (earned run average), posting a 1.35 WHIP (walks and hits per inning pitched) and knocking out 105 batters.
These three players add to the total of baseball players drafted by Charlotte, making it 60 in program history. In the new collegiate era of the transfer portal, having five players drafted over the past two seasons helps the program recruit, showing that they can be a destination that is a springboard for the larger career goals of recruits.
With two of the three 49ers drafted in the first five rounds, it also helps the 49ers athletic department by giving them more exposure and representation.