LAKE BUENA VISTA -- Patrick Schuster, a former Mitchell High standout, will get his shot at playing in the Major Leagues this season.
Schuster, a 13th-round draft choice by the Arizona Diamondbacks in the 2009 draft, was selected Thursday as the No. 1 overall pick by the Houston Astros in the Major League phase of the Rule 5 Draft. Just a short time later, Schuster was traded to the San Diego Padres to complete an earlier deal.
Each team is allowed to put 40 players on its major-league roster. Those players not on the roster and having played at least four or five minor-league seasons depending on their age when drafted, are then exposed to other teams in the Rule 5 Draft. The only stipulation about taking a player in the Major League phase of the draft is the player, in this case Schuster, must remain in the major leagues for the entire season or offered back to his original club for half of the purchase price ($50,000).
Playing in the major leagues would be quite a jump for the 23-year-old Schuster. The left-handed reliever, for the second consecutive season, pitched in the California League (High Class A) for Visalia. In 55 games, Schuster was 0-1 with a 1.83 ERA while holding opponents to a .198 batting average. He allowed 18 walks while striking out 45 in 44 1/3 innings. In five seasons in the minors, Schuster is 16-14 with a 3.55 ERA. Schuster’s delivery could make him a situational lefty in the majors. He throws from three-quarters angle, which can be exceptionally tough on left-handed hitters.
During his senior year at Mitchell, Schuster earned national acclaim by throwing four consecutive no-hitters. For the season, Schuster was 8-1 with an 0.93 ERA and 115 strikeouts, both tops in Pasco County.