Penn State junior pitcher Justin Hagenman (Voorhees, N.J.) was selected by the Los Angeles Dodgers in the 2018 Major League Baseball Draft Wednesday afternoon.
Hagenman was selected by the Dodgers in the 23rd round with the 704th overall pick. He is the third Penn State pitcher to be drafted in the past three years, joining Royals’ 2017 selection Sal Biasi (11th round) and Mariners’ 2016 selection Jack Anderson (23rd round). Before Anderson’s selection in 2016, just one Penn State pitcher was taken in the previous six years (Joe Kurrasch, 2012, 8th round, Giants).
“We’re extremely excited and happy for Justin,” said Penn State baseball head coach Rob Cooper. “He’s worked extremely hard to go from being an undrafted guy out of high school to a 23rd-rounder with the Los Angeles Dodgers. He deserves this opportunity. He has never wavered in his belief and his competitive spirit, and he has continued to get better.”
Hagenman is the 11th player to be drafted during Cooper’s career as a head coach and the fourth in his tenure at Penn State. Those four, also including infielder Jim Haley (2016, 19th round, Rays), have all been selected in the last three drafts.
Hagenman has been a three-year starter for Penn State, posting a 4.64 ERA, 10 wins and striking out 190, and he ranks fourth all-time in school history with 42 career starts. Hagenman was named a Louisville Slugger Freshman All-American and to the Big Ten All-Freshman team in 2016 after going 6-3 with a 3.84 ERA and 39 strikeouts. Hagenman’s strikeout totals surged as a sophomore, as he sent 75 walking back to the dugout. He led the rotation this past season, earning three wins, posting a 4.60 ERA and striking out 76 in a team-best 78 1/3 innings. Opponents batted a career-low .268 against him for the year.
Penn State baseball has now had 57 student-athletes selected in the MLB Draft since its inception in 1965. Hagenman is the first Nittany Lion to be drafted by the Dodgers.