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Rutgers baseball's Harry Rutkowski signs with Toronto Blue Jays

Harry Rutkowski has become the latest Rutgers baseball player to sign a professional contract, as the left-handed pitcher signed with the Toronto Blue Jays to play minor league baseball.  – Photo by Mike Lawrence / Scarletknights

Former Rutgers pitcher Harry Rutkowski has signed a contract with the Toronto Blue Jays as a free agent after going undrafted on Wednesday.

Rutkowski was previously drafted out of Woodbridge High School in the 2017 MLB Draft by the Cincinnati Reds in the 28th round, but he chose not to sign and spent four years on the Banks being an anchor in the Scarlet Knights pitching rotation.

Rutkowski was thrown into the fire immediately during his time at Rutgers, throwing 64 innings in his freshman year in 13 starts. The left-hander was reliable for the Knights during his tenure, going no fewer than 13 starts in every season besides the 2020 season which was canceled due to the coronavirus disease (COVID-19). This did not go unnoticed by his teammates and head coach Steve Owens.

"(Rutkowski) is always consistent. He's awesome and gives us a great chance to win," said redshirt freshman outfielder Evan Sleight after Rutkowski's final start against Illinois. 

That start was a good one for Rutkowski to finish on. The lefty retired 11 of the first 12 batters while going seven innings and giving up only one run. 

During his career, Rutkowski earned his way onto Rutgers leaderboards by being tied for third with 44 starts and 221 strikeouts, while ranking tenth in innings with 249.2 in his four years as a Knight.

Rutkowski had an extra year of eligibility due to the COVID-19 pandemic where the NCAA granted all spring athletes an extra year of eligibility, but he chose to forgo this.

Rutkowski is currently pitching in the top college summer league, the Cape Cod Baseball League. In his three starts for the Brewster White Caps, he has a 1.59 ERA in 17 innings with 16 strikeouts.

The lefty will soon report to the Blue Jays training facilities in Florida and will look to find his way to the big leagues like 16 Rutgers alumni, including Todd Frazier, Patrick Kivlehan and Brian O’Grady.

For updates on the Rutgers baseball team, follow @TargumSports on Twitter.

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