Valley’s own Liberatore, Gorman selected in first round of MLB Draft

Jun 4, 2018, 6:06 PM

(Photo courtesy of Anthony Liberatore/@NolanGorman)...

(Photo courtesy of Anthony Liberatore/@NolanGorman)

(Photo courtesy of Anthony Liberatore/@NolanGorman)

The Arizona Diamondbacks wouldn’t pick until No. 25 in the 2018 MLB Draft but there were some strong Valley ties to the draft before the D-backs picked.

Sandra Day O’Connor High School’s Nolan Gorman and Mountain Ridge High School’s Matthew Liberatore were both selected in the top-20 of the draft. The left-handed pitcher Liberatore was selected by the Tampa Bay Rays 16th overall while the third baseman Gorman was picked by the St. Louis Cardinals with the No. 19 pick.

Both players, who have been close friends since they were five years old, played on rival high schools in the Phoenix area and are committed to the University of Arizona.

Liberatore had an ERA of 0.93 in his senior year for the Mountain Lions, striking out 104 batters in 60.1 innings. Gorman, meanwhile, hit .421 with 10 home runs and 32 RBI.

Gorman’s Eagles recently won their first-ever state championship over, you guessed it, Mountain Ridge.

The two became the first Arizona high school products to be drafted in the first round since 2014 when shortstop Cole Tucker out of Mountain Pointe High School in Phoenix went No. 24 overall to the Pittsburgh Pirates. Tucker, born and raised in Phoenix, is currently playing in Double-A Altoona.

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Valley’s own Liberatore, Gorman selected in first round of MLB Draft