DURHAM, N.C. – Duke baseball right-hander Brian McAfee was selected by the Tampa Bay Rays in the 38th round (No. 1140 overall) of the 2016 Major League Baseball First Year Player Draft Saturday.
McAfee is the third current Blue Devil picked in the 2016 MLB Draft, joining teammates Bailey Clark (Chicago Cubs, 5th round) and James Ziemba (Philadelphia Phillies, 37th round). In addition, McAfee is the 11th Blue Devils and 10th Duke pitcher drafted under head coach Chris Pollard.
“Brian is a tremendous competitor and even better person,” Pollard said. “We wouldn’t have had the level of success we achieved this year without him. He throws four pitches for strikes, including an excellent two-seam fastball. He’s a great addition to Tampa Bay and is capable of pitching at the High A level right away.”
After completing his undergraduate degree at Cornell University with one year of eligibility remaining, McAfee enrolled in Duke’s Fuqua School of Business and joined the Blue Devils for the 2016 season. In 14 starts, McAfee went 7-5 with a 4.11 ERA, leading the team in innings pitched. He tossed three complete games: March 13 vs. then-No. 14 Virginia, March 10 vs. then-No. 18 Clemson and May 8 vs. Gardner-Webb.
Known for his command, McAfee led the ACC in walks allowed per game (1.27) and his 5:1 strikeout-to-walk ratio was the best by a Blue Devil. He also established the Cornell program record, averaging 1.14 walks per game during his Big Red career.
McAfee garnered ACC Pitcher of the Week honors following his performance against Virginia. He was a two-time All-Ivy selection at Cornell as well.