Two Jaspers Selected in Major League Baseball Draft

Baseball teammates Fabian Pena and Joe Jacques were taken by two National League teams in the 2018 Major League Baseball Draft.

Two Jasper baseball teammates – junior catcher Fabian Pena and senior left-handed pitcher Joe Jacques (pronounced "Jakes") – were selected in the 2018 Major League Baseball First-Year Player Draft on Wednesday, June 6.

Three Jaspers have been taken in the MLB Draft in the past two years. Last year, Tom Cosgrove had his name called by the San Diego Padres in the 12th round of the 2017 draft.

The San Francisco Giants selected Pena with the second pick of the 25th round, while the Pittsburgh Pirates tabbed Jacques with the 10th pick of the 33rd round.

Fabian Pena headshotAn All-MAAC second team selection in 2018, Pena hit .255 with 32 runs, 12 doubles, six home runs and a team-best matching 36 RBI. 

The 2016 MAAC Rookie of the Year, Pena has started all 191 games over the last three years for the Jaspers. He owns a .314 batting average with 58 doubles, 18 home runs and 122 RBI and has earned All-MAAC honors each season. The Miami native also played last summer for the Chatham Anglers in the prestigious Cape Cod League.

Joe Jacques headshotJacques split time as a starter and a reliever during the 2018 season and posted a 2.61 ERA with 38 strikeouts, against just 12 walks, with a win and a save over 38 innings pitched. The Garden State native also yielded just one earned run or less in seven of his nine appearances and struck out nine over five innings at NCAA Super Regional participant Stetson in the season opener.

For his career, Jacques struck out 209 over 256.2 innings with 12 wins and a 4.07 ERA over four-plus seasons in Riverdale.

Pena and Jacques make it 17 Jasper baseball players in program history who have been chosen in the Major League Baseball First-Year Draft.

By Pete McHugh