Dustin Beggs to Return for Senior Season

DESTIN, Fla. -- A 32nd round pick of the New York Mets in the 2015 MLB Draft, Kentucky right-handed pitcher Dustin Beggs has elected to return to school for his senior season, he announced on Friday afternoon.

Beggs, a native of Roswell, Ga., led the Wildcats in wins (seven), innings pitched (93.2) and strikeouts (75) in his first season with Kentucky after playing two seasons at Georgia Perimeter College.

“I am thrilled to return to Kentucky for my senior season,” Beggs said. “The opportunity to continue to hone my skills in the nation's top conference and to complete my degree were big factors for me. I am excited for another opportunity to push UK to the next level with a great group of teammates and coaches. Lexington is a home for me now and another year at UK will put me in a great position to reach my goals.”

A 17th round pick out of junior college in 2014, Beggs made 14 weekend starts for the Wildcats in 2015, owning a 7-4 mark and a 3.65 ERA. Beggs allowed 82 hits and led the starting staff with a .234 opponent average, walking just 20. He worked eight quality starts as a junior, sporting a 6-0 record and a 2.25 ERA in those outings. He had a career start in a win over No. 5 Vanderbilt on May 2, fanning 12 with just one walk in 8.2 innings. He also earned wins over No. 20 Mississippi State, Tennessee, and at Arkansas and No. 5 Florida.

Beggs is the 10th Wildcat to be drafted out of UK as a junior to elect to return to school for their senior seasons in the last seven years. Among the players who have improved their draft positions by returning to UK include MLB outfielder Collin Cowgill (29th round in 2007, fifth round in 2008), Sawyer Carroll (18th round in 2007, third round in 2008), Scott Green (15th round in 2007, third round in 2008), Jerad Grundy (27th round in 2012, 10th round in 2013), Taylor Black (28th round in 2010, 16th round in 2011), Chris Rusin (23rd round in 2008, fourth round in 2009), Michael Williams (37th round in 2011, 30th round in 2012) and Sean Coughlin (42nd round in 2006, 13th round in 2007).