Junior right-hander Luke Weaver was the first current FSU player to be chosen in the 2014 MLB Draft. He was chosen with the 27th pick by the St. Louis Cardinals.
"It was a big decision to go to Florida State," Weaver said in a press release. "I used the opportunity to mature more and as a stepping stone for a career in professional baseball. I don't regret for one second the decision I made. I have met some of my best friends and beautiful girlfriend at FSU and to gain the experience under a great coaching staff has been a great experience. This has really paid off."
He's the fourth Seminole drafted by St. Louis since 2009. Second baseman Jason Stidham was an 8th round pick in 2009, pitcher John Gast was a sixth round pick in 2010, and outfielder James Ramsey was a first round pick in 2012.
"The Cardinals were my top team," he said in the release. "When talking to past players like Shane (Robinson), John (Gast) and James (Ramsey), I heard nothing but good things about the organization. They do such a great job with their farm system in developing pitchers. If I could hand pick anyone to play for it would have been the Cardinals."
Weaver was the Seminoles' most reliable starter in 2014. The 6-foot-2, 170-pound righty was the only pitcher to not miss a start, serving as the Friday night starter all season long.
He finished the year 8-4 with a 2.62 ERA, throwing 85 strikeouts in 106.1 innings pitched. He allowed 88 hits and 23 walks for a WHIP of 1.04. His ERA led Florida State's starters, though Brandon Leibrandt had an ERA of 1.83 when he suffered a bone contusion in March and did not return.
Weaver was named a third-team All-American by Collegiate Baseball this year. He ranked 17th in the ACC in opponent batting average, 14th in ERA, 10th in strikeouts, 7th in innings per game, tied for 5th in wins, and 4th in innings pitched.
"Luke Weaver was well respected by all of his teammates because of his hard work, dedication and determination to succeed in all facets of his life," FSU head coach Mike Martin said in the release. "He continued to improve from his freshman year through his junior year and was an exceptional pitcher for us. He represented his family, his university and himself in a first class manner at all times. Everything Luke Weaver has accomplished since he has been at Florida State he has earned. We are excited for Luke and congratulate him on being drafted by the Cardinals."
Weaver saw major improvement from his freshman year to his sophomore year at Florida State. He started six games in 2012 and finished the year with a 5.93 ERA, but started 15 games with a 2.29 ERA in 2013.
His performance as a sophomore led him to be named to the U.S. Collegiate Baseball National Team last summer. He was a second-team All-ACC pick that year.
He was a 19th round draft pick by the Toronto Blue Jays in 2011 out of high school.
"After bypassing the draft coming out of high school and choosing to attend Florida State, I promised myself that I would work to be the best I could be," Weaver said in the release. "I wanted to prove to myself and to those around me that I made the right decision."
St. Louis has drafted six Seminoles in the first round, the most of any MLB team. Catcher Terry Kennedy was drafted in 1977, second baseman Luis Alicea in 1986, outfielder J.D. Drew in 1998, pitcher Nick Stocks in 1999, and Ramsey were previously chosen by the Cardinals.
The MLB Draft continues on Friday evening and concludes on Saturday.
Seminole Recruits Drafted
FSU shortstop signee Nick Gordon, the son of former MLB reliever Tom Gordon, was chosen 5th overall by the Minnesota Twins. Gordon committed to FSU out of Olympia High School in Orlando.
Sean Reid-Foley, a right-hander from SandalWood High School, was drafted in the 2nd round with the 49th overall pick by the Toronto Blue Jays.