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Rockies grab Meaux in 19th round

Baseball: Former Glendale High standout leads local quintet

GCC's Sherriff one of four Angelenos picked.

June 08, 2011|By Gabriel Rizk, gabriel.rizk@latimes.com

GLENDALE — While it didn't surprise him all that much, Jesse Meaux's 19th-round selection by the Colorado Rockies in the 2011 Major League Baseball First Year Player Draft likely defied most expectations, as it came more than 20 rounds earlier than his previous selection in 2010.

On the other hand, Ryan Sherriff's selection in the 28th round by the St. Louis Cardinals was a bit surprising for a different reason, as it fell short of projections that had him going between the 10th and 20th rounds.

Meaux, a right-handed pitcher who graduated from Glendale High in 2007, and Sherriff, a left-handed pitcher from the 2011 Glendale Community College baseball team, were part of a group of five local prospects to be drafted on Tuesday, with the rest coming from the roster of the Glendale Angelenos, a first-year California Collegiate League baseball team that just moved into the Jewel City.

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Meaux, who graduates from UC Santa Barbara on Saturday, was riding his bike home from the Gauchos' training facility on Tuesday when a teammate called and told him he had been drafted.

"He told me I got drafted and I was like, 'No way, what team?'" Meaux said. "I was very excited. I got off my bike immediately.

"I'm very excited, I'm happy where I went. It's really what I was hoping for."

After being chosen 1,341st overall in the 44th round by the Philadelphia Phillies last year, Meaux chose to return to UCSB for his senior season. He went 3-5 with a 3.70 earned-run average as a senior despite dealing with a biceps injury late in the season, and raised his draft stock considerably, as the 588th overall pick.

"I'm very, very happy with my decision to come back to school," Meaux said. "I've matured as a player, as a leader on a baseball team, as a student, as a person overall. The experience I had this senior year, even though in the field I was injured for those last couple weeks, overall was just priceless. It far out values the signing bonus I would have got if I had tried to sign last year.

"I really got let down last year in the draft and I didn't want to get my hopes up for this year, so I was very excited where I ended up getting drafted. I feel that I'm a top-20 pick, personally, so I was very happy, somewhat surprised that's where I ended up getting picked."

A scout from the Rockies called Meaux on Tuesday promising to stay in touch over the next couple days to figure out when they would sign him and when he would be able to begin his first assignment.

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