Cubs select Cashner with First-Round Pick

Andrew Cashner (PHOTO/MICHAEL CLEMENTS)

ORLANDO – The Chicago Cubs today selected right-handed pitcher Andrew Cashner with the 19th selection of the 2008 First-Year Player Draft. Cashner, 21, recently completed his junior season at Texas Christian University (TCU) in Fort Worth, Texas.

In his first season with TCU, Cashner led the club with nine victories, nine saves and 30 relief appearances while posting a 2.32 ERA (14 ER/54.1 IP) in 2008. He limited the opposition to a .122 batting average (21-for-172) while walking just 27 and striking out a team-high 80, good for 13.3 strikeouts per nine innings pitched.

Besides being named first-team all-conference earlier in the season, Cashner also earned a spot on the Mountain West Conference all-tournament squad, and was named third-team All-American by Louisville Slugger last week. Baseball America listed Cashner as the 24th-best prospect heading into this year's draft. The publication also selected his fastball as one of the top-three among college players.

Chicago drafted Cashner in the 29th round of the 2007 Draft after a successful season at Angelina Junior College in Lufkin, Texas. In 2007, he appeared in the Junior College All-Star Game after posting a 9-3 record. As a freshman, he recorded a 2.66 ERA and struck out 24 in 23.2 innings of work after he was selected by Colorado in the 18th round of the 2006 Draft, but did not sign.

Prior to today's Draft, the Cubs selected Walt Owens in the Ceremonial Negro Leagues Draft held by Major League Baseball. Owens, 74, was a pitcher and outfielder for the Detroit Stars while he was attending Western Michigan University from 1953-55. Owens, who resides in Chicago, later spent seven years as Northern Illinois University's baseball coach, winning 133 games, third-most in school history.

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