When pitcher Taylor Black’s family first heard from Bud Selig, Major League Baseball commissioner, his father, Harold, was texting Colorado Rockies executives. They were waiting on the final call.
“We listened to the draft from about 11 a.m. until he was drafted at around 3 in the afternoon,” Harold said. “He had been getting text messages back and forth leading up, and of course there are some emotional highs and lows and getting caught up in the rush when Taylor’s name is finally called.”
The Rockies selected Taylor with their 26th round selection (773rd overall), making him the fourth Bobcat drafted this year.
“It’s great feeling knowing all your hard work has paid off,” Taylor said. “It’s a dream come true really ever since I have played competitively this had been the goal and to finally get here it’s just amazing.”
Taylor credits Mike Bassik, former Texas Ranger pitcher and a one time Rangers pitching instructor, for his ascent to the major league level.
“I realized after Taylor had been seeing Mike more that he had major potential,” Harold said. “Mike told me in a candid conversation one time that Taylor has the potential to make it to the highest level if he commits and continues to work hard.”
Black finished his Bobcat career after his junior season, the first season he was eligible for the Major League Baseball draft. Black won 11 of his 37 career starts, with 185 strikeouts, 82 walks and a 3.58 earned run average.
“Next year is never promised,” Taylor said. “You never know what could happen if I went back or if I would ever get drafted again so I just took the first opportunity I could and ran with it.”
In his first minor league game with the Grand Junction Rockies, Colorado’s class rookie affiliate, Taylor picked up the victory against the Ogden Raptors. Taylor allowed one hit in two innings.
“I kind of got lucky,” Taylor said. “We were down like seven or eight runs when I came out and we ended up coming back and winning getting that first win is awesome. I got the first one down and many more to come.”
Black followed his first win performance with his first start of his major league career pitching 4.1 innings, allowing three hits and zero earned runs. Through his first three appearances, Taylor has allowed two earned runs in six innings.