The Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim selected Seton Hall’s Derek Jenkins with the 726th-overall pick (26th-round) in the 2016 MLB Draft.
Jenkins is the first Seton Hall baseball player to be drafted since 2014 and the first outfielder since 2013. Jenkins is optimistic about playing at the next level.
“My overall speed, whether it’s on the base paths or tracking down balls in the outfield, I think that’s gonna be the easiest part to move into,” Jenkins told The Setonian. “I think that all that hard work that I put in will really help me out in the transition.”
As Jenkins makes this transition to the next level, he believes the Angels are a great spot for him to learn the ins and outs of professional baseball.
“Just noticing from the past few years, they’ve gotten some franchise guys, especially the local Jersey guy, (Mike) Trout,” Jenkins said. “Hopefully I get into that position maybe, working with him at some point would be awesome.”
Jenkins left a legacy at the Hall after contributing to three seasons with at least thirty-seven wins, including a personal achievement of leading the country in stolen bases in his final campaign. Even as he leaves, his outlook on the program’s future is bright.
“I just wish we got a Big East Championship, but I think it’s coming soon,” Jenkins said. “They definitely have a good shot at that.”
With a his college career done with and a professional one on the horizon, Jenkins reflected on what Seton Hall did for him.
“Looking back on it, the years kind of flew, and I learned a lot,” Jenkins said. “It’s just an honor to be able to say that I’ve achieved my lifelong dream, but I would definitely not have been able to do it without any of the guys at Seton Hall.”
Kyle Kasharian can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter @ItsKyleKash.