With their championship win largely due to his effort, it was no surprise that the Dominican Republic’s ace starter Efrain Granados was named the MVP of the Summer College Tournament today.
During the tourney, the 20-year-old Granados, who normally plays for the CANAM’s Utah State Preachers, went 3-1, crafting a 0.96 ERA and tournament-best 0.89 WHIP.
This included a critical semifinals win over South Korea on July 24, his last game, in which he pitched 6.1 innings of a shutout, allowing just 6 hits and 3 walks, on 111 pitches thrown.
Last year, the left-handed pitcher had just 1 start in 2 games for the Dominican Republic, going 1-0 but with a 3.00 ERA. In his college season with Utah State, he went 6-0 with 3 saves and a 3.00 ERA as a reliever, striking out 26 batters in 18.0 innings over 18 games, mainly as the Utah closer this year.
Granados has had an interesting, if circuitous route to his college success. Originally signed to the Toronto Ducks in 2014 as an amateur free agent scouted out of his home country, he was quickly put on the Killam Cyclones roster when it was classed as rookie-level, and played well over his first two seasons there. His third was lackluster and the organization released him in March 2017.
He then signed to the Bull Oceanic League’s Queenstown Royals but did not play any games as that league was dissolved just a few weeks later. Because he was rostered in he BOL, he was eligible for the 2017 draft as an independent league player.
He ultimately went undrafted, then returned to school on a baseball scholarship with Utah, joining their baseball team for the 2018 season. He finished 2nd in reliever of the year voting for Division B at the end of the CANAM season.
He did not enter this year’s draft, though eligible.