A former Hopewell High School pitcher is headed out west after being picked in Competitive Balance Round B (CB-B) of the 2021 MLB Draft. Ohio University left-hander and Aliquippa, Pennsylvania native Joe Rock was selected 68th overall by the Colorado Rockies on Monday afternoon.
— Hopewell High School (@Hopewell_Viking) July 12, 2021
Rock was considered a late-bloomer in the baseball scouting community. He rose to top-100 prospect status by impressing in fall and summer leagues then dominating his final year in college after being declared academically ineligible at Ohio in 2020 and spending a season on the sidelines.
In his final season as a Bobcat, Rock earned Second Team Division I All-American honors from Collegiate Baseball and made the All-MAC First team this past spring after posting an 8-3 record and 2.33 ERA. Rock ranked third in the conference in strikeouts and innings pitched and fourth in ERA and wins.
He boasts an impressive, 6-foot-6, 200-pound frame and a mid-90’s fastball. He can also win with a breaking ball that sits in the low-to-mid-80’s. Once critique of Rock has been his low arm slot, that has led to frequent walks in 2019. But Rock did improve in that area, cutting his free passes down from a rate of 5.64 per nine innings during his freshman season to 2.74 in his junior year.
Rock is the 71st Ohio player to be drafted and the fifth in the last eight years. He is just the second Hopewell alumnus to be drafted into the MLB.