Rocker was expected to go in the first round, but few experts had him inside the top five.
The Rangers, however, were determined to pair him with his former college teammate Jack Leiter.
Rocker’s selection got the Rangers’ fan base really excited: they understand there are some injury risks with him, but the potential for peak Kumar is certainly considerable.
Even Patrick Mahomes, the Kansas City Chiefs’ quarterback, had something to say about Rocker’s arrival in Texas.
“So awesome to watch man! Glad this dude kept grinding and ended up top 10 again! @KumarRocker,” Mahomes tweeted.
— Patrick Mahomes II (@PatrickMahomes) July 17, 2022
Rocker Is Once Again A First-Round Draft Pick
Mahomes, a native of Tyler, Texas, was certainly aware of the Rangers’ move in the draft.
He felt genuinely happy for Rocker: he was drafted tenth overall by the New York Mets last year but didn’t sign, as the team didn’t fully trust his medical record and had some concerns with his right elbow, specifically.
But Rocker didn’t back down on his dream of playing professional baseball.
In May, he signed with the Tri-City Valleycats of the independent Frontier League, to keep himself in top pitching shape with his first professional season in mind.
He knew he would get another shot to be picked in the draft, and the Rangers did it.
A rotation with two former Vanderbilt stars, Rocker and Jack Leiter, is certainly a possibility in the future, once both pitchers have developed enough for the Rangers to consider them as big league options.
Mahomes certainly approves the move.