SECAUCUS, N.J. – Gardner-Webb pitcher Brad Haymes was selected in the 17th round (506th pick) of the 2016 Major League Baseball First-Year Player Draft by the Chicago White Sox Saturday afternoon.
Haymes (Tightsqueeze, Va. / Chatham HS) is the second GWU hurler to be picked in this draft – marking the first time since 1972 that the Runnin' Bulldogs have seen multiple prospects selected in the same draft. Junior Jeremy Walker was tabbed in the fifth round by the Atlanta Braves on Friday.
Haymes is the third Gardner-Webb pick by the White Sox all-time, joining Roger McSwain (3rd Round, 1972) and Larry Six (4th Round, 1969).
A career reliever who moved into the role of Friday night starter as a senior in 2016, Haymes experienced a breakout season and was among the best arms in NCAA Division I.
The 6-foot-3, 205-pound righty went 11-3 with a 2.20 ERA and 115 strikeouts in a workmanlike 110.2 innings of work. He walked only 16 batters, exhibiting pinpoint control all season. Haymes also led NCAA Division I with eight complete games and was among the national leaders in shutouts (3), wins and strikeouts.
A first-team All-Big South Conference selection, Haymes led the league in wins, shutouts, innings pitched, complete games, strikeouts and WHIP while holding opposing batters to a .219 average. His win total tied the Gardner-Webb record for a single season and he became the first pitcher in program history to post at least 10 wins and 100 strikeouts in the same campaign.
Haymes, who was runner up for Big South Conference Pitcher of the Year, was named the league's Pitcher of the Week a record-tying four times in 2016. He surpassed his best individual season by a wide margin in most categories, pitching nearly as many innings as he had his three previous seasons combined.
The former Chatham (Va.) High star made 77 career appearances in four seasons with the Runnin' Bulldogs, forging a 2.72 ERA with 16 wins and nine saves. He fanned 228 batters in 215.0 career innings on the mound.
Haymes' eight complete games in 2016 broke the previous single-season mark held by several former GWU hurlers (7). He narrowly missed the single-season strikeout record and had the best strikeout-to-walk ratio for any pitcher with more than 100 strikeouts in school history.
The emergence of Haymes as an All-America candidate midway through the season was a key reason for Gardner-Webb's surge as a team. The Runnin' Bulldogs finished 37-21 and tied for second in the Big South Conference regular season standings. The win total set a new Division I era mark and the conference finish was the highest for the program since joining an all-sports league in 1990.
The Runnin' Bulldogs also established a new school mark for regular season wins (36) in 2016 under head coach Rusty Stroupe.
Chicago White Sox Draft Picks From Gardner-Webb (Since 1967)
1969 – Larry Sisk (4th round, 75th pick)
1972 – Roger McSwain (3rd round, 53rd pick)
2016 – Brad Haymes (17th round, 506th pick)