It was already a season to remember for the Canisius College baseball team. It became a little bit better on Tuesday.
Two members of the Golden Griffins were selected in the ninth round of the Major League Baseball draft. First baseman Connor Panas went to the Toronto Blue Jays with the 272nd overall pick. Then at No. 274, pitcher Devon Stewart was taken by the Cleveland Indians.
No Canisius player has been drafted higher than the two players since 1994, when pitcher Joe Mammott went to the Boston Red Sox in the sixth round.
Panas and Stewart were important parts of a Canisius team that won the Metro Atlantic postseason tournament and a trip to the NCAA tournament.
Panas led the team with a .372 average and 68 RBIs. He was the most valuable player of the MAAC tournament, and later became the first player in Canisius baseball history to hit a home run during an NCAA Tournament game.
Stewart tied for the team and conference lead in wins with seven and had a 3.84 earned-run average. During his career, he finished with 24 wins, and he is second on the Griffins’ all-time record list for strikeouts with 222.
Panas and Stewart are the 10th and 11th players from Canisius to be selected in the amateur draft in the school’s history.
It’s the third straight season that a Canisius player has been drafted by a major league team. Rohn Pierce went in the 19th round to the Seattle Mariners last year, while Garrett Cortright was picked by the Baltimore Orioles in the 40th round in 2013.
The last time that two Golden Griffins went in the second round was in 2011, when Sean Jamieson (Oakland Athletics, 17th round) and Chris Cox (Toronto Blue Jays, 39th round were picked).
More Canisius baseball players could be selected on Wednesday. Rounds 11 through 40 will be held then, with the draft resuming at 11 a.m.