Johnson County Community College
Press Release

College Information and Publications
Julie Haas, associate vice president, marketing communications, ext. 3120
Diane Carroll, writer/editor/media relations, ext. 3425
Tyler Cundith, sports information director, ext. 3122

Two former Cavaliers selected in MLB Draft


Two former Cavaliers selected in MLB Draft

OVERLAND PARK, Kan. – Former Johnson County Community College pitchers Matt Blackham and Cody Schumacher were recently selected in the 2014 Major League Baseball Player Draft. Blackham was taken in the 29th round (285th pick) by the New York Mets, and Schumacher went in the 36th round (1,095th pick) by the St. Louis Cardinals.  Both players reached a contractual agreement with their clubs and will report to their short season single A teams.

Head coach Kent Shelley has now mentored 32 former players that have been drafted or signed as free agents by Major League teams since he took over the reigns of the program in 1987. In the last eight years, nine pitchers have been selected in the draft.

Blackham was the ace of the Cavaliers’ staff in 2012 and 2013. His freshman season, Blackham made 14 appearances on the hill, 12 as a starter. He finished 4-4 with 55 strikeouts in 52 innings, an ERA of 2.56 and held batters to a .196 average. As a sophomore, he made 13 appearances, all as a starter. He finished 4-7 with 83 strikeouts in 57.2 innings, an ERA of 2.55 and held batters to a .157 average.  His 83 strikeouts led Jayhawk Conference and ranked 29th in the NJCAA. He career total of 138 set a new record at JCCC.

Blackham posted a 1-2 record with a 4.83 ERA last spring at Middle Tennessee State University. He did not allow a hit or run and struck out nine batters in the final 6.2 innings pitched. Blackham picked up his first collegiate save with a bases-loaded situation strikeout against Old Dominion in the opening game of the Conference USA Championship.  For the year, Blackham led all Blue Raider relievers with 49 strikeouts and held opponents to a .239 batting average.

Schumacher was the ace at JCCC prior to Blackham. In 2011, Schumacher led the team in wins (10), ERA (1.70), strikeouts (80) and innings pitched (82.1). He also tied for the team’s lead in starts with 12. Schumacher’s 10 wins tied the third best season in Johnson County history and he ranked fifth in innings and eighth in strikeouts for a season. For his career, Schumacher won 17 games, second most all-time, and struck out team record 136 batters. He was chosen the team’s MVP and earned All-Region VI and All-East Jayhawk Conference honors.

Schumacher went on to play at Missouri State University where he capped his MSU career with a dominant 2014 season as the Bears' regular Friday starter, leading the Bears in mound victories with a 6-2 mark for the season to go along with a 2.45 earned run average that not only paced the MSU staff, but ranked seventh overall in the Valley. Schumacher limited the opposition to a .210 batting average, the fourth lowest in the circuit, and his six wins tied for ninth among all MVC pitchers.