June 8, 2013
EVANSTON, Ill. -- Northwestern senior Zach Morton was taken by the Houston Astros in the 32nd round of the 2013 Major League Baseball First-Year Player Draft on Saturday.
Morton is the second NU student-athlete selected in this year's draft, joining pitcher Luke Farrell, who was grabbed in the sixth round by the Kansas City on Friday. Morton becomes the 64th player under Northwestern head coach Paul Stevens to be drafted or sign a contract with a Major League organization.
Morton did it all for the Wildcats throughout his career. The Evanston, Ill., native made 13 starts on the hill during the 2013 season and posted a 2.86 ERA in a team-high 85 innings of work, ranking 11th in the Big Ten in both categories. Early on in the spring, the right-hander strung together a streak of 26.2 consecutive scoreless innings on the bump between Feb. 22 and March 22.
As a pitcher, Morton graduates ranked seventh all-time with 43 starts and ninth with 268.2 innings pitched. He tossed four complete games in a Northwestern uniform, all of which came in 2012. He posted a career ERA of 4.39 to go along with 170 strikeouts.
The versatile fifth-year senior was one of college baseball's unique two-way talents. When he wasn't on the mound for Northwestern, Morton split time as a second baseman and designated hitter for the 'Cats. The All-Big Ten honoree batted .290 with 11 extra-base hits and a team-best 31 RBI this season. The disciplined hitter struck out only 17 times in 183 at-bats in 2013.
One of Morton's most memorable performances at the plate came on April 20 against Michigan. Playing at Wrigley Field, the Chicagoland native belted back-to-back RBI doubles in his first two at-bats to help the Wildcats secure a 6-0 triumph.
Morton batted .310 for his career (165 games) with 28 extra-base hits and 70 RBI. He collected All-Big Ten honors as a second baseman in 2010 and 2013.
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