Marbut breathing easier after MLB deadline

Marbut breathing easier after MLB deadline

WASHINGTON STATE baseball coach Donnie Marbut was breathing a whole lot easier Tuesday after Monday night's signing deadline passed without any other Cougars signing pro contracts.

Marbut expected all along that ace pitcher Adam Conley would sign with Florida. Sure enough, Conley signed with the Marlins – who drafted Conley in the second round – for a reported $625,000 last week.

First baseman Taylor Ard (25th round, Boston) and right fielder Derek Jones (13th round, Baltimore) turned down pro offers. So did three incoming freshmen: outfielder Ben Roberts (seventh round, Arizona), pitcher Tanner Chleborad (24th round, Seattle) and pitcher Joe Pistorese (44th round, Chicago White Sox).

The Cougars received more good draft news when highly touted Washington pitching recruit Robert Stephenson signed at the last minute with Cincinnati. Stephenson, the Gatorade Player of the Year in California high school baseball, signed for a reported $2 million after being drafted 27th overall in the first round.

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