One day after holding back his emotions at a post game podium in Ft. Worth Texas, where the Missouri State Bears were eliminated in NCAA Super Regionals, Jake Burger replaced that disappointment with excitement after he heard his name called as the 11th overall pick at the 2017 MLB Draft on Monday. The Bears hard hitting third baseman was selected by the Chicago White Sox.
White Sox director of amateur scouting Nick Hostetler was sold the moment he met Burger for their pre-draft interview.
“Before we started the interview, he stopped and said, ‘I’m a huge White Sox fan.’ Paul Konerko, Jim Thome, those were his heroes,” Hostetler tells Scott Merkin of MLB.com.
“It was kind of cool. He blew us away. The makeup was off the charts. He’s a great kid. High energy. Lots of fun.”
Burger, who grew up in St. Louis and played high school ball at CBC, said he tried to emulate Konerko’s game. He also said as long as he wasn’t cheering for the Cubs, his friends (mostly Cardinals fans), didn’t give him any grief.
Burger batted .328 with 13 doubles, 22 home runs, 65 RBIs, 69 runs scored, three stolen bases, 43 walks, a .443 on-base percentage and .648 slugging percentage in 63 games for No. 22 Missouri State this season. He finished second in NCAA Division I with 21 home runs in ’16 and seventh this year with 22 homers.
The Sox are confident they’ll be able to sign Burger. The slot value at No. 11 is $4,199,200.