FORT MYERS, Fla., - Richard Bleier became the highest Eagle ever drafted when the Texas Rangers selected the FGCU left-handed pitcher in the 6th round with the 183rd pick. Last season, the Houston Astros selected Luis Pardo in the 9th round with the 291st pick.
Bleier was named the Atlantic Sun pitcher of the year after leading the conference in wins, ERA, complete games and innings. He was a the only unanimous selection to the A-Sun’s first team. Bleier, a junior from Davie, Fla., was dominant this season with a 7-1 record and 2.09 ERA. He logged 90.1 innings and made 12 starts with four complete games. He struck out 76 batters while walking just 17 and limiting opponents to a .232 average.
Since the program began in 2003, FGCU has now had five players selected in the draft. Pardo and Jason Kiley were drafted last season while Jason Louwsma and Justin Stiver were picked following the 2006 season.
Several other Eagles are expected to hear their name called later in the draft including Cape Coral, Fla., native Casey Coleman and A-Sun player of the year Jason Peacock.