FORT MYERS, Fla. – FGCU’s all-time leader in home runs and RBI, senior Tim Roberson (West Palm Beach, Fla./Palm Beach Central HS) will get a chance to continue his baseball career after signing a free agent contract with the Boston Red Sox on late Thursday night. Roberson has been assigned to the Lowell Spinners of the New York-Penn League and will immediately be on their active roster.
Lowell will open the season tonight at home against the Connect Tigers, an affiliate of the Detroit Tigers, at 7:05 p.m. Roberson will wear No. 13 and is listed as one of three catchers on the roster.
A member of three Atlantic Sun regular season championship squads, Roberson left his mark all over the FGCU record books during his four seasons. A career .321 hitter, Roberson finished in a tie with classmate Zach Maxfield (North Port, Fla./North Port HS/Pasco-Hernando CC) for the program lead of 40 home runs, 180 RBI and 418 total bases over 173 games started. He also ranked fourth in hits (247), tied for second in doubles (47) and fifth in runs scored (156).
Roberson burst onto the scene as a sophomore, earning A-Sun All-Conference first team honors after producing a .349 average, a team-high 88 hits, 12 doubles, 19 home runs, 65 RBI and a .631 slugging percentage in 2009. The West Palm Beach native’s breakout campaign helped the Eagles go 23-7 in the conference, as he ranked second in the league in both home runs and total bases (159). Roberson was back at it again as a junior, raking to the tune of a .332 average with 60 runs, 85 hits, 18 doubles, a team-best 13 home runs and 63 RBI. His 173 hits and 32 home runs over that span are both the team record totals for back-to-back seasons.
In the 2011 MLB draft, FGCU had three current players and one signee selected. Incoming freshman Granden Goetzman (Palmetto, Fla./Palmetto HS) is the only to sign a professional contract after being taken in the second round with the No. 75 overall pick by the Tampa Rays. The signing deadline for all MLB draftees is Aug. 15.
Junior Jacob Barnes (St. Petersburg, Fla./St. Petersburg HS) was taken in the 14th round by the Milwaukee Brewers on the second day. The 33rd round saw a pair of Eagles come off the board, as senior Jack Wagoner (Berlin, Conn./Northwest HS/St. Petersburg) was selected by the Cleveland Indians and the Minnesota Twins took senior shortstop Stephen Wickens (Whitby, Ontario/Sinclair Secondary).
In all, the Atlantic Sun Conference had 18 current players drafted, equaling the second-best total set in 2009. The conference record of 21 draftees came in 2006. The 2011 season was a banner year for the A-Sun, as it sent three teams into the NCAA Tournament (Belmont, Jacksonville, Stetson) and was ranked No. 7 in WarrenNolan.com’s conference RPI ratings for most of the season.