Tyler Keenan, a 2017 graduate of Cleveland High School in Johnston County, has been drafted by the Seattle Mariners in the fourth round of the Major League Baseball Draft. He was the 107th pick in the draft held Thursday night. Tyler played baseball at Cleveland High from 2014 to 2017. He had played at Old Miss from 2018 to 2020.
At Cleveland, Tyler was a four-year letterwinner under coach Jamie Lee. In his high school career, he hit .427 with 14 home runs and 107 RBI’s. He was named all-conference four times and conference player of the year in 2017. During his senior year he was ranked the number 16 overall prospect in North Carolina and the number 1 third baseman in the state. Nationwide, he was ranked the 13th-best third baseman.
At Ole Miss, Tyler had his junior season cut short this year due to COVID-19, but still managed to start 17 games at third base. He led the team with a .403 batting average, the 10th highest in the SEC. He reached base in all 17 games and finished the year with an 11-game hit streak. He also finished the year as a Collegiate Baseball First Team All-American. He was also second nationally with 33 RBI, fourth in the nation with 53 total bases. He was second in the SEC and eighth in the country with 7 home runs in the shortened season.
The 2020 MLB Draft was shortened from 40 rounds to only 5 this year because of COVID-19.
Tyler, 21, becomes the second player from the new Cleveland High School to be drafted. Kodi Whitley was drafted in 2017 by the St. Louis Cardinals and played Tripe AAA last year. He is still in the organization and hopes to make it to the big leagues soon.
Tyler is the son of Jimmy and Tammy Keenan. He has one sister, Raleigh.
His father told Johnston County Report, “My wife and I are so proud of him. He has put in long-long hours of work and traveled up and down the east coast and out west. It’s been a life long dream. It started when he was five. We are extremely proud of him.”
Tyler and his family are members of the First Presbyterian Church in Myrtle Beach, SC.