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2023 MLB Draft: Paul Skenes Selected 1st Overall by Pittsburgh Pirates

America’s Ace is off to Steel City

HaVy Nguyen

Paul Skenes’ lone season in Baton Rouge is going to be remembered forever: national champion, SEC pitcher of the Year, Dick Howser Award winner, national champion, CWS MVP, and now first overall pick.

Skenes was selected first overall of Sunday’s MLB Draft by the Pittsburgh Pirates.

Skenes had the greatest pitching season in LSU history. He broke Ben McDonald’s single season SEC record of 202 strikeouts, was named the SEC’s pitcher of the year, and was the MVP during LSU’s run to a national championship.

Skenes struck out 209, while holding batters to a .165 average. He went 13-2 with a 1.69 ERA. All four of those numbers led the SEC this past season.

In Omaha Skenes was 1-0 with a 1.15 ERA and 21 Ks over 15.2 innings. The last time Skenes donned the purple and gold was in LSU’s epic 11-inning win over Wake Forest where he, on four days rest, pitched eight scoreless innings and struck out nine.

Skenes is the highest picked LSU pitcher since Ben McDonald also went first overall by Baltimore in 1989. Like his teammate Dylan Crews, it’s only a matter of time before Skenes gets called up by Pittsburgh.