CEDAR RAPIDS — Playing in the College World Series never was the end all, be all for Connor Van Scoyoc. His baseball goals trended higher.
That’s why he is foregoing the rest of his senior season at Cedar Rapids Jefferson and a career at traditional powerhouse Arizona State and signing a professional contract with the Los Angeles Angels.
The 6-foot-5 right-hander — known affectionately as “Chubs,” because of his chubby frame as a kid — was taken Wednesday by the Angels in the 11th round of the Major League Baseball Draft. He said he will sign and report to the Angels’ minor-league complex in Tempe, Ariz., within the next few days.
A contract signing bonus has been agreed upon between Los Angeles and the Van Scoyoc family, though “Chubs” would not disclose how much it is.
“I never dreamed about winning at Omaha,” he said. “I always dreamed about pitching at Wrigley Field or Busch Stadium growing up. So when the opportunity came up, I knew where I wanted to be.”
Van Scoyoc has impeccable baseball lineage.
His brother, Spencer, was drafted after his senior year at Jefferson but didn’t sign and just completed his sophomore season at Arizona State. His father, Aaron, played three seasons of minor league baseball in the New York Yankees system.
Grandfather, Jim, is the Hall of Fame former coach at Norway High School and a former minor league coach in the Detroit Tigers system. Great uncle Mike Boddicker pitched 14 years in the big leagues.
Connor Van Scoyoc has a fastball that reaches 90 miles per hour right now, with the possibility of adding some ticks as he fills out physically. Scouts liked that he has a good spin rate on his breaking ball and the ability to know how to pitch.
“Me, my brother and my parents were sitting at home in the living room (Wednesday),” Van Scoyoc said. “We had three computers on, just in case something would happen with the Wi-Fi or something. When I heard my name, I just kind of felt chills. I’ve been ready for this. It’s all so surreal.”
Another former Metro prep also said Wednesday he will turn pro. University of Iowa junior relief pitcher Zach Daniels was drafted by the Atlanta Braves in the 19th round and will skip his final year of college eligibility.
Daniels was an all-stater at Cedar Rapids Kennedy and went to Iowa as an infielder-pitcher, before concentrating on pitching after his freshman season.
“Today was nerveracking because I expected to go today,” Daniels said. “I kind of expected to go a little higher, but we got what we were looking for. The Braves are a great organization, especially fit wise (for me). I was really happy with what went down.”
Daniels’ Iowa teammate Nick Allgeyer also was drafted Wednesday. The junior left-handed pitcher, who emerged as the Hawkeyes’ ace this season, went to the Toronto Blue Jays in the 12th round.
Kirkwood Community College shortstop Korry Howell went nine picks after Allgeyer, also in the 12th round, to the Milwaukee Brewers. Howell has signed with Iowa, but both he and Allgeyer are expected to go pro.
The Brewers also picked Iowa junior pitcher Brady Schanuel in the 27th round.
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