The Royals opened up Day 2 of the Draft with their fourth pitcher in five picks -- and third lefty -- selecting University of Central Florida left-hander Eric Skoglund in the third round on Friday.
Skoglund, the 92nd pick overall, started 33 games over three years with the Knights.
He flourished in this, his junior season, posting a 2.54 ERA in a career-high 15 starts. Opponents batted just .217 against Skoglund, and he struck out 94 batters in 110 innings.
Tall and lanky, Skoglund, at 6-foot-6 and 170 pounds, throws three pitches effectively. His fastball sits around 90 mph, and his changeup and slider profile as average pitches.
"He pitches off deception and fastball command," Royals director of scouting Lonnie Goldberg said. "Starting pitching is at a premium, the Draft is full of depth in pitching, we tried to attack it early."
Skoglund bounced back after a rough sophomore year, in which he had a 5.08 ERA in 10 starts. One of the reasons for his ascension this year was his improved control. Skoglund, who walked 29 batters in 56 2/3 innings last season, issued just 27 free passes this year, while nearly doubling his innings (110).
The Pirates selected Skoglund in the 16th round of the 2011 Draft out of Sarasota (Fla.) High School, but he opted to attend UCF, and improved his Draft position 390 spots in the process.
The Draft concludes on Saturday, with exclusive coverage of Rounds 11-40 beginning on MLB.com at noon CT.
Jackson Alexander is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.