AUBURN, Ala. – Kevin Patterson became the sixth Auburn baseball player drafted in the 2011 Major League Baseball Draft on Tuesday when the Toronto Blue Jays selected him in the 30th round, pick No. 919 overall.
A senior, Patterson leaves Auburn after one of the more prolific home run hitting careers on the books. Slamming 35 career home runs, eighth all-time at Auburn, he hit a career-high 16 during Auburn's record setting campaign in 2010 when he was named the First Team All-SEC Designated Hitter. Returning for his senior season after being drafted in the 23rd round last season by Tampa Bay, he hit .283 this year with 16 doubles and eight home runs, driving in 43 RBI and scoring 26 runs.
For his four-year career, in which he was a team captain for each of the last three, he hit .271 with 36 doubles, five triples and his 35 home runs, collecting a .520 slugging percentage.
Tuesday's selection marked the third time Patterson has been drafted as he was also picked in the 24th round of the 2007 MLB Draft by the Chicago White Sox.
Patterson joined Dan Gamache (sixth round, Pittsburgh), Casey McElroy (11th round, San Diego), Derek Varnardore (17th round, Florida), Bradley Hendrix (22nd round, Tampa Bay) and Tony Caldwell (24th round, Florida) as current Auburn players to be selected in the 2011 Draft.
Auburn has had at least one player selected in the draft in each of the past 37 drafts, dating to the 1975 season. It is tied with Arkansas for the second-longest streak in the SEC behind Georgia's 39-year run.