TCU’s Skoug goes in seventh round, outfielder Wade in fifth, pitcher Howard in eighth

TCU catcher Evan Skoug was selected in the seventh round by the Chicago White Sox, outfielder Austen Wade was a fifth-round selection by the Cleveland Indians, and 11-game winner Brian Howard went in the eighth round to the Oakland Athletics in the Major League Baseball draft Tuesday.

Skoug, a junior from Libertyville, Ill., rated the No. 2 college catcher in the draft, is expected to start his professional career this summer following the College World Series. He is hitting .277 and leads the Horned Frogs with 20 home runs and 67 RBIs heading into a 6 p.m. Sunday opener in Omaha, Neb.

Skoug hit two home runs in a Super Regional series sweep against Missouri State to power the Frogs to the College World Series for a fourth consecutive season. This will be his third CWS.

Skoug has homered in 16 of the past 33 games and in four of TCU’s five postseason games. His 36 career home runs are tied for fourth on the TCU list.

Before the Super Regional series, Skoug said he was not stressed about where or if he was drafted.

“I’ve been through it before in high school,” he said. “I know how to handle it. Honestly, I really don’t care because I’m enjoying every last second I get with my brothers and around this place. If it doesn’t happen, I don’t care. I love this place, and I would have no regret not signing a contract this year.”

Wade, a junior outfielder from Midland, batted .342. He tied the TCU single-season record for walks last season with 57 and leads TCU with 47 this season, despite missing five games.

Howard, a senior right-hander from St. Louis, is TCU’s first back-to-back 10-game winner. He is 5-0 in his last five NCAA postseason starts for TCU.

TCU had 62 players drafted by 25 teams in coach Jim Schlossnagle’s 13 previous seasons.

Right-handed pitcher Shane Baz of Concordia Lutheran in Tomball, TCU’s top-rated signee, was taken with the 12th pick by the Pittsburgh Pirates.

But the 6-foot-3 Baz, who also hit .431 this season while playing third base and outfield, has called TCU his dream school and could decide to turn down a signing bonus of close to $4 million based on estimates by Baseball America.

Last summer, left-hander Nick Lodolo was taken 41st by the Pirates and opted to pitch at TCU. He started 15 games and went 5-1 with a 4.28 ERA in 73  2/3 innings for the Horned Frogs.

Jacob Gonzalez, a third baseman from Chaparral High School in Scottsdale, Ariz., who also has committed to TCU, was drafted with the 58th overall pick Monday by the San Francisco Giants.

Carlos Mendez: 817-390-7760, @calexmendez

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