BOSTON -- After ending a four-year run of drafting college players last season, the Boston Red Sox went back to high school with their top pick for the second straight season.
The Red Sox took teenagers in both the first round and the compensation phase that followed the opening round Thursday night.
Picking 26th, the defending champions took infielder Michael Chavis of Sprayberry Senior High School in Marietta, Ga. He is a shortstop who is projected to move to third base or second base, or even catcher or the outfield.
The 5-foot-10, 190-pounder was regarded as one of the top high school hitters in the draft. He previously committed to Clemson, but he said Thursday he is "fairly comfortable" that's he's going to turn pro.
"Our approach each year is to select the best players available to us, and we believe Michael fits that description," director of amateur scouting Amiel Sawdaye said in a statement. "He was undoubtedly one of the best high school hitters in this year's class, and we were fortunate to have him. In addition, we believe his athleticism and defensive versatility also will be an asset to us."
As far as where he will play, Chavis said, "I think that depends on where they need me the most. I can see myself playing third base or second base. It really just comes down to where they need me. I'm willing to play either one."
Seven picks after taking Chavis, the Red Sox, as compensation for losing center fielder Jacoby Ellsbury to the New York Yankees, selected high school pitcher Michael Kopech from Mount Pleasant, Texas. The lanky right-hander has touched 97 mph on the gun with his fastball. Kopech, who committed to Arizona, went 3-0 with an 0.44 ERA and a .115 opponents' batting average in 11 high school games this season.
In the second round, with the 67th overall pick, Boston took 22-year-old college first baseman Sam Travis, a smallish (5-11) but powerful right-handed hitter (Fenway in mind?) from Indiana. Travis led the Big Ten in RBIs (58) and hits (85) and was in the top four in the conference in batting average (.347), home runs (12), runs (55), slugging percentage (.576) and total bases (141).