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Baseball - Sat, Jun. 7, 2014

The Los Angeles Dodgers selected Oklahoma Baptist junior shortstop Ivan Vela in the 21st round of the 2014 Major League Baseball First-Year Player Draft Saturday afternoon.

Vela played just one season at OBU, finishing with a .347 batting average. The second-team All-American had a team-leading 87 hits, including 22 doubles and seven home runs. A first-team All-Sooner Athletic Conference selection, Vela had a fielding percentage of .924 for the Bison.

 

"We are thrilled for Ivan and his family," said OBU associate head coach Chris Klimas. "We are thankful for the time and hard work that he invested in Oklahoma Baptist University. Though we will miss him wearing a Bison uniform next year, we couldn't be more proud of him."

 

The Dodgers selected Vela with the 639th overall pick. "It was exciting. I've been working all my life to get to this point. It's a great feeling," said Vela.

 

The West Hills, Calif., native grew up about 30 miles from the team that drafted him. "They're my favorite team. Now to be a part of this organization, it's beyond great. It's fantastic," said Vela.

 

Vela was the third member of the 2014 Bison team to get drafted, joining Julian Merryweather and Matt Page. He also becomes the 41st player in program history to be selected in the draft.