Bethune-Cookman University catcher Michael Cruz was selected in the seventh round (224th overall pick) Friday by the Chicago Cubs and thus became the first Historically Black College and University (HBCU) player selected in the 2016 Major League Baseball Draft.
Cruz, a 5-11, 210 junior was drafted primarily as a catcher, but has played as a utility infielder for the B-CU Wildcats.
Cruz was a big part of Bethune’s offense exhibiting power at the plate. He was among the team leaders in numerous statistical categories as he finished the season with 68 hits, a .330 batting average, scored 49 runs with 6 doubles, one triple 16 home runs and 40 runs batted this past season. As well, Michael Cruz finished the season with 35 stolen bases.
Cruz earned the first-team All-Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference (MEAC) honors this season as well as the second team Black College Nines All-Elite team.
The draft started this past Thursday night with the first two rounds and runs through Saturday, when rounds 11-40 will be held via conference calls with all 30 major league teams.