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Boyertown's Bogucki tabbed by Twins in draft

Boyertown's A.J. Bogucki, a hard-throwing senior righthander and North Carolina commit, was picked by the Minnesota Twins in the 31st round (No. 920 overall) of Major League Baseball's first-year player draft.

"Obviously, it's pretty cool," the 18-year-old said late Saturday afternoon. "This doesn't happen to many high school players."

The 6-foot-3, 200-pound Bogucki mixes a fastball clocked in the high 80-m.p.h. range, slider, and changeup. His fastball has topped out at 93 m.p.h.

About immediately turning pro or fulfilling his commitment to play at North Carolina, he said, "There's no decision yet. That will be made over the next couple of days. But unless something really surprising happens, I'll be playing college ball for the next three seasons."

Bogucki worked out for the Phillies, Rangers, and Red Sox. "There were a lot of questions about my signability," he said. "I think that's why I dropped as far as I did. Before the draft, there was some talk of me going between the sixth and eighth rounds."

In the recently completed season, while helping lead the Bears to the Pioneer Athletic Conference championship, he went 5-2 with a 1.93 ERA and 80 strikeouts in 58 innings.

Bogucki, of Gilbertsville, threw a bullpen session for the Phillies last Saturday. "There was some very high interest from them after the workout," he said. "But nothing came of it."