June 5, 2012
UC MLB Draft Central
CINCINNATI — University of Cincinnati right-handed pitcher Zach Isler (Union, Ky./Covington Catholic) was selected Tuesday by the Chicago White Sox with pick No. 261 in the eighth round of the 2012 Major League Baseball First-Year Player Draft, the eighth consecutive year a Bearcat has been drafted.
“I don’t even know what to say right now; I’m ecstatic,” said Isler. “(White Sox area scout) Phil Gulley said, 'We’re taking you with the next pick that we’ve got; congratulations.' I’m very happy with where I went.”
Isler, a 6-foot-5 junior, appeared in 22 games with four starts in 2012, posting a 2.78 ERA with five saves, which ranked ninth in the BIG EAST Conference. He finished second on the team with 55 strikeouts in 55 innings pitched and held opponents to a .236 batting average.
Isler did not surrender an earned run in 14 of his 22 appearances and placed 10th in the BIG EAST in fewest earned runs allowed (14) during league play.
After serving as the Bearcats closer for most of the season, Isler started the last four series openers of the year and posted a 1.61 ERA with 21 strikeouts in 28 innings while limiting opponents to a .212 average. He went at least six innings in all four starts and did not allow an earned run in two of his four starts, which includes a career-high 10-strikeout, seven-inning performance vs. Rutgers April 27.
In three seasons at UC, Isler owns a 3.96 ERA with 99 strikeouts in 136 1-3 innings pitched. His seven career saves are tied for ninth place in school history, while his 57 appearances are good for 15th.
The Isler selection marks the 20th occasion a Bearcat has been drafted during head coach Brian Cleary’s 16-year tenure at Cincinnati.
Isler will have until 5 p.m. July 13 to sign with the White Sox or choose to complete his fourth year of eligibility at UC.