ST. LOUIS, Mo., July 11, 2021 – The St. Louis Cardinals selected right handed pitcher Michael McGreevy out of the University of California Santa Barbara with their first round selection (18th player overall) in the 2021 Major League Baseball Draft.
McGreevy, a San Clemente, Calif. native pitched three seasons at UC Santa Barbara, going 16-3, 2.33 ERA (189.1 IP/49 ER) with 194 strikeouts and 31 walks.
“Michael just reeks of athleticism and of being a starter,” stated Cardinals Assistant General Manager and Director of Scouting Randy Flores. “He has a great feel for the strike zone and takes great pride in the way he pitches. We see him as a strike thrower and as someone who almost has a phobia of walking batters. The strides Michael has made show great internal motivation and ownership of his career.”
Despite going undrafted out of high school, McGreevy quickly exhibited his ability to throw strikes as a freshman for the Gauchos, working out of the bullpen. For his efforts, McGreevy was named to the Baseball America Freshman All-American First Team after his 2019 campaign, going 5-1, 1.94 ERA (13 ER/ 60.1 IP) with 6 saves, 53 strikeouts and 13 walks in 29 appearances.
The 6-5, 215-pound McGreevy transitioned to a starter in 2020 and allowed three runs across his four starts (0.99 ERA) before the season was cancelled because of COVID-19. His 0.97 walks-per-9 IP ratio and 10.45 strikeout-to-walk ratio in 2021 both ranked 2nd among all qualified Division I pitchers and he led the Big West Conference with his 101.2 innings pitched in 2021, again earning First Team All-Big West honors and recognition as a semifinalist for National Pitcher of the Year by the College Baseball Foundation.
McGreevy is the second UC Santa Barbara Gauchos 1st Round selection in program history and the first since Dillon Tate (4th overall, Texas) in 2015. He is the first Gauchos RHP selected in the draft since 2016 when Cleveland took Shane Bieber in the 4th round.
McGreevy was high school teammates with pitcher Andre Pallante and a college teammate of Tommy Jew, both members of the Cardinals organization.
McGreevy was the first pitcher selected by St. Louis in the 1st round since LHP Zack Thompson (19th overall, Kentucky) in 2019 and the first right-hander since Luke Weaver (27th overall, Florida State) in 2014. He was the 5th college pitcher taken in this year’s draft and the 8th pitcher overall.
McGreevyis the fourth 18th overall selection for the Cardinals since 1965, joining left-handed pitcher Joe Magrane (1985), shortstop Aaron Holbert (1990), and shortstop Pete Kozma (2007).
St. Louis has made the most first round draft selections among all teams in Major League Baseball history with 66 total picks from 1965-2021. Recent first round picks include third baseman Jordan Walker (2020, 21st overall), left-handed pitcher Zack Thompson (2019, 19th overall), third baseman Nolan Gorman (2018, 19th overall), right-handed pitcher Griffin Roberts (2018, 43rd overall), shortstop Delvin Perez (2016, 23rd overall), outfielder Dylan Carlson (2016, 33rd overall), and right-handed pitcher Dakota Hudson (2016, 34th overall).
The team’s highest overall selection was right-handed pitcher Braden Looper (3rd overall) in 1996. The Cardinals have had only 11 top-10 selections, the most recent being outfielder J.D. Drew (5th overall) in 1998.
The 2021 MLB Draft continues tomorrow with rounds 2-10, beginning at 12 noon CDT, and concludes with rounds 11-20 on Tuesday starting at 11 a.m. CDT.