Chandler Taylor was selected by Minnesota in the 27th round of the MLB First-year draft on Wednesday. He was also selected as a participant in the annual Coillege Home Run Derby on July 1. (Photo courtesy Unv Alabama Athletic Dept.)
By Graham Dunn
(June 14, 2017)
Former Alabama Christian Academy star and current Alabama outfielder Chandler Taylor was the first pick of the 27th round (796 overall) in the 2017 MLB First-Year Player Draft, going to the Minnesota Twins.
Taylor was the second player taken in this year’s draft from the 2016-17 Crimson Tide roster, joining Garrett Suchey, who was taken earlier in the day.
According to his father, Billy, Taylor will weigh his options as to whether he will sign with the MLB club or return for his junior year at Alabama.
"We’ve talked with his advisor and we’ll wait and see how this goes but he has no issues on returning to Alabama," Billy Taylor said.
Taylor also learned this week that he was one of six players selected to participate in the annual College World Series Home Run Derby as part of the annual tournament in Omaha, Neb. on July 1. The event will be broadcast live on ESPN.
Taylor is currently playing in the Cape Cod League and was unavailable for comment.
A two-year starter at Alabama, Taylor has been a force in the Crimson Tide lineup, serving as the primary cleanup hitter in each of the last two seasons. Taylor batted .278 (107-385) with 25 home runs and 67 RBI while adding 67 runs scored in his two seasons with the Crimson Tide. His efforts earned him postseason all-conference recognition each year, including All-SEC Freshman Team honors in 2016 followed by a Second Team All-SEC selection in 2017.
Taylor finished 2017 as the team leader in seven offensive categories including: home runs (16), RBI (34), runs (39), walks (32), stolen bases (7-11), slugging percentage (.601) and total bases (113). His numbers also placed him among league leaders, ranking third in home runs, fifth in slugging and ninth overall in total bases during the regular-season.
In SEC play, Taylor led UA’s everyday starters in average at .295 (33-112), while contributing a team-leading 10 home runs, 15 RBI, 19 runs scored, 71 total bases and 16 walks. His .634 slugging and .382 on-base percentage also led the team, while his eight doubles and three stolen bases each tied for the team-high mark. Against SEC opponents during the regular season, Taylor ranked fourth in home runs, fifth in slugging percentage and seventh in total bases across the league.