O’s tab Kevin Gausman with their top pick

The Orioles tonight selected LSU right-handed pitcher Kevin Gausman with the fourth pick in round one of the First-Year Player Draft.

Gausman pitched LSU to a 7-1 win Sunday over Oregon State in the NCAA regionals, going eight innings and allowing seven hits and one run, throwing 129 pitches. In 16 starts this year with the Tigers, he is 11-1 with an ERA of 2.72 along with 128 strikeouts and 27 walks in 115 2/3 innings. Opponents have batted .231 against him this season, his sophomore year for the Tigers.

Scouting reports say his fastball sits from 94 to 96 mph and touches 98. He throws a two-seam fastball in the low 90s and has a very solid changeup. Scouts have had some questions about his breaking pitches.

Gausman was drafted in round six by the Dodgers when he came out of a Centennial, Colo., high school in 2010. He pitched for the USA national team last summer and his pitching coach at LSU is former Orioles coach and minor league pitching coordinater Alan Dunn.

Gausman is rated as the draft’s No. 5 prospect by Baseball America and is ranked No. 4 by MLB.com.

The Orioles could have taken high school lefty Max Fried or Stanford righty Mark Appel, who were both available for that selection.

Gausman was 5-6 with a 3.51 ERA and 86 strikeouts in 89 2/3 innings in his freshman season in 2011. Gausman was a high school two-time All-State selection, two-time Perfect Game High School All-American, 2009 Under Armour All-American, 2009 AFLAC All-American and gold medal winner with the USA Baseball Junior National Team.

Gausman becomes the third Orioles’ first round pick out of LSU, joining Mike Fontenot (2001 - 19th overall) and Ben McDonald (1989 - 1st overall).

The Orioles do not have another pick tonight, which will conclude after the supplemental first-round picks. The Orioles will have the No. 65 overall pick tomorrow in round two of the draft and the No. 99 overall pick in round three.

The Orioles have been allotted $6,826,900 to sign their 10 picks in the draft’s first 10 rounds. They have been allotted $4.2 million for the first pick.

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