Shaler’s Bryan Rincon drafted in 14th round by Phillies

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Tuesday, July 19, 2022 | 5:46 PM


Bryan Rincon made quite an impact in the two years he spent at Shaler.

He developed into one of the area’s top baseball players, earning 2022 Trib HSSN all-star honors as the Class 5A Player of the Year.

On Tuesday, the senior shortstop was selected in the 14th round of the Major League Baseball Draft by the Philadelphia Phillies. He was the 422nd overall pick.

“It was something great, something that I’ve been working (toward) for years,” Rincon said. “So it was pretty cool, but that wasn’t the goal. This is only the (start).”

Rincon is committed to play at San Jacinto College, a junior college in Texas, but could opt to sign with the Phillies instead. He said the Phillies liked that he can do a little bit of everything on the field — run, throw, field and hit from both sides of the plate.

“It took a lot, so much effort, hard work, discipline, the extra reps, the extra swings, the extra sprint runs, sweat, blood,” he said. “Everything was because of the Lord. Without him, I wasn’t going to be able to get through all of that.”

Rincon moved with his cousin, Titans outfielder and pitcher Miguel Hugas, from Venezuela two years ago. He was just 135 pounds but opened the eyes of the coaching staff with his arm strength and work ethic.

“When he threw a baseball, you just said, ‘Wow, there’s something different there,’” Shaler coach Brian Junker said. “I knew he had to put on weight and strength. He’s now around 185 at 5-11. That’s all through hard work.”

Rincon, who hit .456 with nine doubles, two home runs and 22 RBIs this season using a wooden bat, is also smooth on defense.

Hugas, a rising senior, also is a top prospect and expected to be in MLB draft conversations next spring.

Rincon joins five other players with Western Pa. ties to be drafted this week.

North Allegheny’s Cole Young was picked in the first round by the Seattle Mariners.

• Pine-Richland grad Matt Wood, from Penn State, was selected by the Milwaukee Brewers in the fourth round.

Former Canon-McMillan pitcher Cameron Weston went to the Baltimore Orioles in the eighth round.

Former Allderdice pitcher Tanner Jacobson was drafted in the 10th round by the St. Louis Cardinals.

Blackhawk grad Michael Turconi was picked by the Toronto Blue Jays in the 15th round.

“It’s a nerve-wracking experience for sure, especially when you are this close with the player,” Junker said. “…We’re very happy to be in the MLB draft. That’s amazing. He’s come such along way.”

Bill Hartlep is the sports editor of the Tribune-Review. You can contact Bill at bhartlep@triblive.com or via Twitter @BHartlep_Trib.

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