“I’m definitely excited for the opportunity to go play [professionally],” Green said. “An organization wants me, that means a lot to me. I’m very happy to be picked by the Reds.”
It’s the second consecutive year Green was selected in the draft. The Detroit Tigers took him in the fourth round last summer, but Green chose to return to Texas for the chance to play for a national championship, and to earn his college degree. Green turned down a $300,000 signing bonus from Detroit, and understood that he would probably lose a lot of money by returning for his senior season.
“I was a little worried after I dropped past where I was drafted last year, the fourth round,” he said. “I understood that being a senior and not having the numbers I had last year takes away my leverage.”
Green was 11-2 last season with a 2.74 ERA, but saw those numbers dip to 7-3 and a 3.09 ERA this year. Green struggled early in the season, when he was fazed by the pressure of performing to his draft stock.
“I’ve definitely grown as a pitcher. I’ve learned a lot from my adversities, doing badly in the beginning of the year,” Green said. “I put a lot of pressure on myself to be great this year. When I didn’t live up to it, I had to put myself in a different mindset and just be a competitor again.”
Green has talked briefly with the Cincinnati Reds, mostly “medical questionnaires and get-to-know-you stuff.”
“They told me after they drafted me ‘Hey, congratulations. Take care of business and we’ll talk after the season.’”
Green is slated to start Saturday’s game against Arizona State.
“We’ve done well and we came a lot closer last weekend,” Green said. “But this next weekend is important for my ideas and dreams of a national championship, which is why I came back.”