Posted December 12, 2013

Russell Wilson selected by Texas Rangers in 2013 MLB Rule 5 draft

NFC West, Seattle Seahawks
Russell Wilson batted .306 with a .439 on-base percentage in his final season at N.C. State.

Russell Wilson batted .306 with a .439 on-base percentage in his final season at N.C. State. (Tony Farlow, Four Seam Images via AP Images)

Though there’s certainly no indication he plans to switch sports any time soon, Seahawks QB Russell Wilson was selected off the Colorado Rockies’ minor-league roster by the Texas Rangers during Thursday’s MLB Rule 5 draft.

Wilson, who played second base, was taken twice during the MLB amateur draft — once in 2007 by the Orioles before opting to attend college, then as a 2010 fourth-rounder by the Rockies. He played two seasons in Colorado’s minor-league system, one with the short-season Class A Tri-City Dust Devils and another with A-ball’s Asheville Tourists.

Wilson hit a combined .229 in that time, while also playing college football first at N.C. State and later at Wisconsin. He added five home runs and 19 stolen bases.

In 2012, though, after guiding Wisconsin to the Rose Bowl, Wilson informed the Rockies that he would be hanging up his glove to pursue a pro football career.

“We thought his future would be better in baseball, if he chose to pursue it,” Bill Schmidt, the Rockies’ vice president of scouting, told the Associated Press at the time. “But we always knew that football was there. We would’ve liked to have seen him stick with it a little longer and seen where it would’ve taken him. But I fully understand where he’s coming from with football.”

The Seahawks drafted Wilson No. 75 overall (Round 3) of the 2012 draft, making him their starting quarterback shortly thereafter.

It is not uncommon for MLB teams to draft two-sport college athletes, especially since baseball’s draft runs for 40 rounds. In fact, just this past draft, the Rangers also used a 15th-round pick on current Florida State quarterback Jameis Winston. Last season for the Seminoles, Winston batted .235 with nine RBIs while splitting time between left and right field. The Heisman Trophy finalist also made 17 appearances as a relief pitcher, posting a 1-2 record.

Players selected in the main portion of MLB’s Rule 5 draft must stay on their new team’s major-league roster all season or be offered back to the original club. Because Wilson was taken in the AAA-level section of the draft, the Rangers can stash him on their roster, in case he ever stuns the football world by bailing for the diamond.

16 comments
Richard V
Richard V

There's no way he takes time away from training off season or not. He is fully committed to being a great quarterback and has no time for baseball.

cheesyhybrid
cheesyhybrid

Still waiting for Jake Locker and Toby Gerhart to come play some baseball for the Angels. An outfield with Trout, Locker and Gerhart would be interesting for a spring training game. 

Frotoon
Frotoon

Wilson already replied that he's looking forward to working out with them in Spring Training. So, yes, it was definitely worth the $12,000. He's never going to actually play, but having him around the young players will be motivational since he has such high character and work ethic.

djp9
djp9

The Seahawks have another Willson, Luke, who may even be better than Russell at Baseball. He hit cleanup for Canadian World Junior team I believe behind Blue Jay Brett Lawrie. He's also 6'5" 250 and runs about the same 40 as Russell. The Mariners probably could have used both of them this last year lol.

AdamArmstrong
AdamArmstrong

I would rather read 100 articles about Wilson like this than hear one more narcissistic conference from RGIII. Wilson is such a good role model too, I commend the kid.

nonix81
nonix81

Mariners should've signed him

Thomas Baker
Thomas Baker

Can you believe that the NC State Coach told Wilson that if he returned to NC State for his final year of eligibility it would be in a backup QB role. Reason given was that he did not attend spring practice  because of baseball. That coach later got fired and Wilson transferred to Wisconsin and the rest is history.


Wilson could transfer without sitting out a season because he had already graduated NC State.

oldguy68
oldguy68

The kid has lots of talent and lots of class. Good role model

AndrewHolcomb
AndrewHolcomb

@Thomas Baker Mike Glennon was the backup and if I recall correctly, they had spent the entire off-season rewriting the offense to better fit Glennon's skills while Wilson was away playing baseball. If they just gave Wilson the job, then the off-season would've been a waste of time. Any smart coach would've made the same call.

Joe L
Joe L

Why are they idiots? They gave up nothing except a paltry amount of money, and plan on using him as a motivational coach in training camp.

JustinParisi
JustinParisi

Glennon was the backup, but Wilson had been the starter the previous season and had excelled. Tom O'Brien had told Wilson (unfairly) to concentrate *just* on football or be a backup and Wilson understandably said no and transferred.


In hindsight, it was probably the worst move TOB made as a head coach. NCSU had an ok season (8-5) and Glennon turned out to be pretty good, but Wilson was stellar his senior year at Wisconsin and is the better pro QB right now. Would have been nice for NCSU to be able to claim Wilson all to themselves instead of having the asterisk next to Wilson's college career.