Charleston Southern right-hander Ryan Gunther has been selected by the Atlanta Braves in the 12th round of the 2013 Major League Baseball Draft.
Gunther was taken early Saturday afternoon as the 373rd pick in the draft by the Braves. The senior was the Bucs' Friday night starter in his final season at CSU and wrapped up his career with his best month as a Buc, which clearly garnered attention from pro scouts.
"I am very proud of Ryan in his development as a player and in his representation of Charleston Southern University and this program," CSU head coach Stuart Lake said on Saturday. "I'm very excited for him to be with the Braves and for him to play and grow as a pro within the region."
For Gunther, it almost goes without saying, getting drafted has been a lifelong dream, especially after growing up as a Braves fan.
"It means a lot to me to get drafted," Gunther said on Saturday. "It's been a dream of mine to play pro ball since I was five. What's not to like about the Braves? They are an outstanding organization. I've been a Braves fan my whole life, so to get drafted by them is something special. I'd like to thank everyone who helped me along the way; the coaches and friends and family, but especially my father and Coach Lake."
The Goose Creek-product went 7-5 as a senior with a 3.97 ERA, his best season as a Buc after transferring into the program from Spartanburg Methodist College. He was 4-2 over his final six starts and saw his ERA drop to 2.86 in his final seven starts of the year. He struck out 34 and walked only 12 in his final 40.1 innings of work.
Gunther's best outing as a senior came in a 10-strikeout performance in a win over VMI in which he did not allow an earned run. He also shutout Liberty for six innings in a 2-1 loss in the Big South Tournament and beat Coastal Carolina, 7-3, to clinch a Big South Tournament spot for the Bucs.