Flames pitcher drafted by Tampa Bay

Tomas Michelson

Tomas Michelson was selected by the Tampa Bay Rays in the MLB draft Sunday. Photo: Steve Woltmann

UIC pitcher Tomas Michelson was selected by the Tampa Bay Rays in the 29th round of the 2014 Major League Baseball draft Saturday. Michelson was picked as the 877th overall player after competing three years for the Flames.

“I’m very excited and grateful that the Rays are going to give me an opportunity play professionally for their franchise,” said Michelson. “This process can be stressful, but at the end of the day, hearing my name called was an awesome feeling.”

The Naperville native just finished his junior season with the Flames and owns a 13-13 career mound record. Michelson ranked second in the Horizon League with 93.1 innings pitched and third with 61 strikeouts. He was named first team All-Conference in 2013 after he posted 65 strikeouts and an ERA of 3.08.

One of Michelson’s top moments at UIC happened on Feb. 20, 2013, when he tossed 7.1 shutout innings against then-No. 24 Texas A&M. He was credited with the win as UIC claimed a 2-0 victory. Michelson ended the day with five strikeouts and allowed just four hits. CollegeBaseball360.com later selected him as the National Primetime Player of the Week.

Michelson becomes the first UIC player to be drafted since 2009 when Adam Worthington was selected by the Arizona Diamondbacks in the 20th round.

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