Canadian picks down slightly

BOB ELLIOTT

, Last Updated: 8:44 AM ET

Putting in place an Aug. 15 deadline -- sign or go to school -- was expected to hurt Canadian prospects in basebal's annual June draft.

While this was an exceptionally deep draft, a total of 33 Canadians wound up being selected as the two-day selection of high schoolers and collegians wrapped up yesterday.

Led by Seattle Mariners first-rounder Phillippe Aumont, of Gatineau, Que., this year's Canuck quotient was down only five from the 38 selected last year.

In the past, scouts had 51 weeks to evaluate players selected after the 30th round as draft-and-follows -- a cateogry most Canadians fell into. Now, clubs have less than 10 weeks to decide whether or not to sign a player.

The top Canuck on Day 2 of the draft was right-hander Evan Hildebrandt, of Abbotsford, B.C., who went in the sixth round to the Cincinnati Reds.

The first local player selected was Toronto outfielder Tim Smith, of Arizona State, who went in the seventh round to the Texas Rangers.

The top high school player chosen from the area was Mississauga catcher Jordan Wideman of the Ontario Blue Jays.


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