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Arkansas infielder Cayden Wallace selected by Kansas City Royals in second round of MLB Draft

The Royals picked the Razorback third baseman with the 49th overall pick.
Credit: AP
Arkansas's Cayden Wallace (7) watches the ball during the eight inning against North Carolina in an NCAA college super regional baseball game in Chapel Hill, N.C., Sunday, June 12, 2022. (AP Photo/Karl B DeBlaker)

FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. — Cayden Wallace is the first Razorback off the board in the 2022 MLB Draft.

The Kansas City Royals selected the Arkansas infielder with the 49th overall pick in the second round of the draft on Sunday.

The slot value assigned for the No. 49 overall pick is $1.584 million.

A native of Greenbrier, Ark., Wallace played two seasons for his home state Razorbacks.

He's coming off a 2022 season in which he was the starting third baseman for an Arkansas team that was one of the last four teams standing in Omaha.

Wallace hit .298 this past season while adding 16 home runs, 60 RBI and slugging .553 in 67 games.

His 2021 campaign was also impressive, one in which he earned Freshman All-American honors from Baseball America and he was named to the SEC All-Freshman team.

In that season, Wallace played in 60 games, mostly in right field, hitting .279 with 14 home runs and 44 RBI, all while posting a perfect fielding percentage.

Going into the draft, MLB.com had Wallace rated as the No. 31 best prospect in the draft and had this to say in its scouting report on Wallace:

"One of the best power hitters in the 2022 college class, Wallace generates impressive exit velocities with his bat speed, strength and relatively compact right-handed stroke. Most of his present power comes to his pull side, and some scouts question his ability to handle quality stuff and pitches on the outer half. He'll need to do a better job of using the opposite field and staying back on changeups. 

Wallace has gotten stronger and improved his tools in college, going from an average to solid runner and plus to perhaps double-plus arm strength."

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