While the Lander University baseball team was busy compiling a 50-plus win campaign and earning a trip to the College World Series this season, the Bearcats’ squad attracted plenty of attention.
The outstanding performances of some led to plenty of individual attention, and, during last weekend’s Major League Baseball draft, three of them saw that attention turn into the opportunity for every baseball player’s dream: a shot at the big leagues.
Junior pitcher Mason McCullough, senior right fielder Pat Grady and senior shortstop Erik Lunde were each drafted during the three-day event, becoming just the second, third and fourth players ever to be drafted from Lander.

Prior to the weekend, pitcher David Wilson (2005) was the only Bearcat to be selected during the draft.
For coach Kermit Smith, the achievement is a great testament to the talents of the three draftees. But, more than that, it’s a reflection of the job his team did of putting itself in the spotlight this season and demanding to be noticed.
“It’s exciting,” Smith said. “In a way, it’s like your sons are getting a chance to move on, and I’m just so happy for them.
“But, I think, when you see three players get drafted like this, you have to look at the players that didn’t get drafted that put us in position to be a program that scouts were continuously coming back to watch. You look at the Connor Lewises, the Graham Ramoses, the Dylan Wolchiks and all those guys who are great college baseball players.