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Dodgers draft Bucs' Freeman in 18th round

Staff Report • Jun 7, 2014 at 4:53 PM

JOHNSON CITY — Jonesborough native Clinton Freeman was selected by the Los Angeles Dodgers in the 18th round of Major League Baseball's amateur draft on Saturday.

Freeman, who just completed a stellar career at East Tennessee State, was the 549th overall pick.

The two-time All-Atlantic Sun selection played in 188 games (181 starts), while hitting .343 (246-for-718) with 52 doubles, nine triples, 31 home runs and 165 RBIs in his four-year career with the Bucs. On the mound, Freeman went 13-11 with an ETSU program-record 21 career saves in 83 appearances (15 starts) for ETSU.

"I think it's an honor and a blessing to be drafted by the Los Angeles Dodgers," said the former David Crockett High School standout, who played first base, outfield and pitcher at ETSU. "Everything worked out the way it was supposed to be and I am thankful for this opportunity. I was fortunate to play collegiate baseball at ETSU. I want to thank my coaches and teammates for making be a better player and person. I look forward to going to work and playing the game I love for as long as I can."

For his career, Freeman — who entered the season with a pair of All-America accolades — ranked among active NCAA leaders in RBIs (8th), home runs (11th), saves (26th), doubles (28th) and hits (31st). Freeman also ended his collegiate career starting in 172 consecutive games.

This season, Freeman started in all 57 games for the Bucs and hit .348 (77-for-221) with 17 doubles, two triples, 13 home runs and 53 RBIs. The southpaw also earned two wins and 11 saves on the mound, while striking out 41 and walking 13 in 25 appearances. Freeman led the Bucs in multi-hit (22) and multi-RBI games (13) in 2014, while also registering at least one hit in 45 games. He earned a pair of A-Sun player of the week honors and was named Louisville Slugger National Player of the Week on March 31.

"I am very happy, excited and proud for Clinton," said ETSU coach Tony Skole. "He has worked extremely hard to be able to pursue his dream of playing professional baseball. All of ETSU, Johnson City and our surrounding communities will enjoy watching him continue his baseball career. This is a great day for him and his family."

Saturday marks the end of the MLB Draft with rounds 11-40 wrapping up the three-day event.

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