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Star-Bulletin Sports

Wednesday, June 7, 2000

M A J O R _ L E A G U E _ B A S E B A L L

Rainbows shut out;
14 with isle ties picked

By Al Chase


A streak of 23 consecutive years in which at least one University of Hawaii baseball player was drafted ended yesterday.

Major-league teams finished the 50-round draft yesterday, selecting 1,452 players.

No Rainbow and none of the seven recruits UH head coach Les Murakami has signed for the 2001 season were picked. From 1977 to 1999, 59 Rainbows were drafted.

High school players Reid Santos, a left-hander from Castle, was taken in the 23rd round by Montreal, and Bruddah Choy Foo, a shortstop from Kailua, went in the 26th round to Cleveland.

Former Punahou teammates catcher Chris "Buster" Small and right-hander Damon Yee were selected in the 28th round by Toronto and Houston, respectively.

Shannon Telles, an outfielder from Waianae High School, was a 35th-round pick by Oakland.

Hawaii Pacific University outfielder Scott Suraci was chosen by Minnesota in the 40th round.

Silas Ah Sui, a third baseman who played high school ball for Nanakuli, was picked in the 42nd round by Cleveland out of the College of Siskiyous (Calif.).

Fourteen players with Hawaii ties were selected this year.

Santos will wait to learn what the Expos have to say. He also has to consider a scholarship offer from Lewis-Clark State.

Choy Foo said he is considering junior college for baseball, but will wait to see what the Indians offer. He also has the option of playing football at the NCAA Division I level.

Small, from Princeton, and Yee, from Vanderbilt, graduated recently and will sign.

"I talked to four or five scouts during the season and they were leery about Ivy League kids, worried they would quit early and go to work on Wall Street," said Small, who was also drafted in 1996 by the New York Yankees in the 84th round.

"I told them that wasn't part of my plan, that I wanted to play baseball."

The 6-foot, 205-pound Small was co-captain of the Ivy League champion Tigers. He hit .296 his senior season with eight doubles, a home run and 18 RBIs.

"I was a little disappointed I wasn't drafted the first day, but it's good to be picked, especially by a good organization like the Houston Astros," Yee said.

The 6-foot-2, 190-pound right-hander was 5-7 with a 5.55 earned run average this past season. He appeared in 17 games, 13 as a starter and pitched five complete games for the 21-33 Commodores.

Suraci (6-4, 220 pounds) hit .427 for the Sea Warriors. He led the team with 21 doubles and had one triple and four homers.

"I'm kind of disappointed, but I'm glad I did get picked," Suraci said. "Right now, I'm open on whether to go back to school or sign."

Dane Sardinha, taken in the second round by Cincinnati Monday, is a semifinalist for the Johnny Bench National Collegiate Catcher of the Year Award.

This award goes to the top collegiate catcher based on athletic ability, sportsmanship, team leadership and character.

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