Brewers History

Milwaukee Brewers: Six players you didn’t know they drafted

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PHOENIX, AZ - AUGUST 05: Manager Craig Counsell
PHOENIX, AZ - AUGUST 05: Manager Craig Counsell /
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NASHVILLE, TN – JUNE 10: NFL player Eric Decker shows off his softball skills for charity at the 27th Annual City of Hope Celebrity Softball Game at First Tennessee Park on June 10, 2017 in Nashville, Tennesse (Photo by Rick Diamond/Getty Images for City Of Hope)
NASHVILLE, TN – JUNE 10: NFL player Eric Decker shows off his softball skills for charity at the 27th Annual City of Hope Celebrity Softball Game at First Tennessee Park on June 10, 2017 in Nashville, Tennesse (Photo by Rick Diamond/Getty Images for City Of Hope) /

Eric Decker

That is right.  The wide receiver in the NFL was drafted for baseball too.  The Milwaukee Brewers selected him in the 39th round of the 2008 draft.  He was taken as a left fielder.

The choice came after his junior year at the University of Minnesota, where he was a two-sport athlete.  He obviously excelled in both sports enough to be drafted in them.  He is a tremendous athlete.

Decker was coming off a year where he hit.329 with 42 runs and 28 RBIs.  He added nine stolen bases to that mix as well.  It was a great season that showed baseball skill that projected well.  But it was a pick that was doomed from the start.

According to an article on the Minnesota football website, Decker said this of the selection, “It was an honor to be drafted by the Brewers, but I think they knew I wasn’t going to sign.”

"“It was an honor to be drafted by the Brewers, but I think they knew I wasn’t going to sign.” -Eric Decker"

Those are the kind of players the late rounds are for.  The ones who have some potential with a low chance of actually signing.  At that point the team needs to sell the professional baseball life and hope it sticks.

It was not a successful sell to Decker, though it was not expected to be.  Though he is doing well for himself in the ranks of professional football.  He has established himself as a very solid wide receiver for the New York Jets.

It is a wonder how his career would have gone should he have decided to become a Milwaukee Brewers outfielder.  He could be a staple in a lineup hitting line drives, instead of avoiding linebackers trying to hit him.

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