Two Little Rock baseball players, catcher Cameron Knight and pitcher Cory Malcom, were selected by the St. Louis Cardinals in the 2017 Major League Baseball Draft.
Knight was taken with the 964th overall pick in the 32nd round, and Malcom was the 1,024th overall pick in the 34th round.
In 2017, Knight had the second-highest batting average on the team at .310 and added 54 hits, 27 runs, 23 RBIs, and 12 doubles. He played in 51 games and started in 44. Of the 44 starts, Knight was the DH in 29 games and catcher in 15. He ended the season with a perfect 1.000 fielding percentage.
As Little Rock’s only four-year player, Malcom saved his best season for 2017 as he broke the program’s single-season record for strikeouts with 109. He finished the year with a 3.46 ERA and a 4-5 record in 96.1 innings on the mound. Malcom’s strikeout-to-walk ratio of 5.74 led the Sun Belt and ranked 25th nationally.
This is the fifth consecutive year that at least one Little Rock player has been drafted. It’s also the first time since 2009 that two Trojans have been selected in the same draft. The last time two Trojans were taken by the same team in the same draft was in 2001 as Derin McMains and Miguel Miranda were selected by the San Francisco Giants. Knight and Malcom are the first Trojans to be drafted by St. Louis since pitcher Scott Madden in 1983.
Little Rock signee Marcus Ragan was drafted by the Boston Red Sox in the 15th round with the 461st overall pick. Ragan is a junior college transfer from East Mississippi Junior College and hit a club-high .395 with 70 hits, 58 runs, 13 doubles, eight triples, six home runs, 34 RBIs, and 25 RBIs last season. For his performance, Ragan was named to the MACJC All-State Team.