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Terp Shortstop Becomes Highest MLB Draft Pick in Program History

By Maryland Athletics Staff

University of Maryland junior shortstop Matt Shaw was selected No. 13 overall by the Chicago Cubs on Sunday evening, making him the highest draft pick in program history.

With the selection, Shaw passes John Hetrick, who was taken with the No. 17 pick by the Detroit Tigers in 1967. Shaw is the sixth first-round Terp draft pick and the first since Brett Cecil in 2007.

The 2023 Big Ten Player of the Year, Shaw was a consensus first-team All-American selection, most recently receiving honors from D1Baseball. Shaw completed one of the best seasons in Terp history, batting .341 with 24 home runs, 90 hits and 69 RBIs in 2023. A first-team All-Big Ten selection in both his sophomore and junior seasons, Shaw set the Maryland all-time home run record, finishing his career in College Park with 53 home runs.

Shaw also won the 2023 Brooks Wallace Award from the College Baseball Hall of Fame, which goes to the top shortstop in the nation. The Brimfield, Mass., native was previously named a first-team All-American by Collegiate Baseball News, the National College Baseball Writers Association, American Baseball Coaches Association and Baseball America.

Shaw is the fifth Terp taken by the Cubs all-time and the first since Charlie White was a 21st-round pick of the club in 2014.

Three more UMD players were selected on Day 2 of the draft on Monday: junior catcher Luke Shliger, junior right-handed pitcher Jason Savacool and senior infielder Nick Lorusso. This marks the first time since 2015 that Maryland baseball has had four selections in the top 10 rounds.

Shliger was selected by the San Francisco Giants in the sixth round (180th overall), becoming the first Maryland catcher to be drafted since Kevin Martir was taken in the 18th round by the Houston Astros in 2015. He led the Terps in 2023 with a .523 on-base percentage while leading the nation in runs (93) and sitting second in walks (69). The All-Big Ten First Team selection and All-American became UMD’s all-time leader in runs scored, passing new head coach Matt Swope (1999-2002), who held the record with 181.

Savacool was also selected in the sixth round (185th overall) by the St. Louis Cardinals. Over three seasons at UMD, he entered the top five in program history in innings pitched (279), wins (24) and strikeouts (270). The two-time All-Big Ten selection led the pitching staff in strikeouts (95) and innings pitched (96) in 2023.

Lorusso was selected by the New York Mets in the ninth round (276th overall). The nation’s 2023 RBI leader with 105, he led the team in hits (100), RBIs (105) and batting average (.379) while setting the single-season program record with 26 home runs. The 2023 All-Big Ten First Team honoree holds the program record for single-game (eight), single-season (105) and career (175) RBIs, doing so in just two years with the Terps. Lorusso was named the Big Ten Tournament’s Most Outstanding Player and a consensus national All-American in 2023.

On Tuesday’s final day of the draft, an additional three Terps were selected. Redshirt sophomore right-handed pitcher Nigel Belgrave, who struck out 43 batters in 33.2 innings at UMD, was taken in the 15th round (443rd overall) by the Miami Marlins. Senior right-handed pitcher Nick Dean, who was 13-6 with a career 4.44 ERA in 43 starts for the Terps, was picked in the 19th round (556th overall) by the Cubs. Finally, junior left-handed pitcher Tommy Kane, who appeared 17 times with 29 strikeouts in 28.1 innings for UMD, was selected in the 19th round (570th overall) by the Giants.

The seven Terps drafted are the program's most since a record eight were taken in the 2015 draft, which included 40 rounds.

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