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Anthony Chiusano | | October 23, 2019

World Series 2019: Here's where the Houston Astros and Washington Nationals played college baseball

In 2009 Stephen Strasburg dominated college baseball

The Houston Astros and Washington Nationals will play in the 2019 World Series. Between the two MLB teams' active rosters, 30 players once suited up for NCAA programs.

Overall, 162 former NCAA student-athletes, 107 NCAA institutions, 27 DI conferences and three divisions were represented by this year's 10 original MLB playoff teams. Below, we highlight every former college baseball player listed on each of the teams' active rosters to close out the regular season on Sept. 29. 

POSTSEASON HEROES: Players who have won a College World Series and an MLB World Series

First, here are some general notes:

  • Each MLB playoff team had at least a dozen former college baseball players on its active roster at the end of regular season play. The Tampa Bay Rays and St. Louis Cardinals tied for the most with 19; the AL pennant-winning Houston Astros had the least with 12.
  • Of the 27 DI conferences represented at the start of the postseason, the SEC had the most former student-athletes with 33. The next most belonged to the ACC (20), Pac-12 (13) and Big West (12).
  • Sixteen former student-athletes played at current DII institutions and two came from current DIII schools.
  • Cal State Fullerton led all NCAA schools on the list with six representatives. Fifteen other schools have at least three: Florida (four), Louisville (four), LSU (four), Virginia (four), California (three), Dallas Baptist (three), Maryland (three), Mississippi (three), Mississippi State (three), Missouri (three), Oklahoma (three), Old Dominion (three), South Carolina (three), Texas A&M (three) and Vanderbilt (three).
  • LSU is the most represented school in the World Series matchup, with three former players: Andrew Stevenson of the Washington Nationals, and Alex Bregman and Will Harris of the Houston Astros.

Here is a breakdown of former college baseball players by team. Listed below the two World Series rosters are the eight teams previously eliminated in the playoffs. Positions and colleges were taken from's official active rosters at the end of regular season play on Sept. 29.

The 2019 World Series runs from Tuesday, Oct. 22 to Wednesday Oct. 30, if necessary. Click or tap here for the full postseason schedule.

*Players cut from postseason rosters for each round will be noted with an asterisk.

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Houston Astros

The Houston Astros have 12 former college baseball players on its roster, including seven who are active for the World Series.

Gerrit Cole (UCLA) and Justin Verlander (Old Dominion) are both top contenders for the 2019 AL Cy Young Award. They also both happen to be in the Astros' starting rotation. Cole ended his Bruins tenure ranked second in career strikeouts in UCLA history with 376. Verlander is No. 1 on ODU's strikeout list with 427.

Astros third baseman Alex Bregman was a star shortstop at LSU, garnering recognition as a 2015 first-team All-American and Golden Spikes finalist. He led the Tigers to a 2015 College World Series appearance.

Joe Biagini* P UC Davis
Gerrit Cole P UCLA
Chris Devenski P Cal State Fullerton
Will Harris P LSU
Wade Miley* P Southeastern Louisiana
Joe Smith P Wright State
Cy Sneed* P Dallas Baptist
Justin Verlander P Old Dominion
Garrett Stubbs* C Southern California
Alex Bregman 3B LSU
Jack Mayfield* 2B Oklahoma
George Springer OF Connecticut

*Not on World Series 25-man roster

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Washington Nationals

San Diego State Athletics Stephen Strasburg

Eighteen former NCAA student-athletes are on the Washington Nationals' roster, including 13 who are active for the World Series.

Nationals reliever Sean Doolittle and first baseman Ryan Zimmerman were teammates at Virginia for one season in 2005 when the Cavaliers made a run to NCAA regionals. Zimmerman played in 174 games over three years at UVA (2003-05), finishing with 140 RBIs, 128 runs and 63 extra-base hits. Doolittle (2005-07), a two-way player, was ACC Player of the Year in 2006 and finished with 22 victories on the mound and 22 homers at the plate.

Stephen Strasburg was a two-time All-American pitcher at San Diego State and set the school record with a 1.59 career ERA. He was the No. 1 overall pick in 2009.

Aaron Barrett* P Mississippi
Sean Doolittle P Virginia
Erick Fedde* P UNLV
Daniel Hudson P Old Dominion
Tanner Rainey P West Alabama (DII)
Max Scherzer P Missouri
Stephen Strasburg P San Diego State
Austin Voth* P Washington
Tres Barrera* C Texas
Yan Gomes C Barry (DII)
Kurt Suzuki C Cal State Fullerton
Matt Adams 1B Slippery Rock (DII)
Brian Dozier 2B Southern Mississippi
Anthony Rendon 3B Rice
Trea Turner SS North Carolina State
Ryan Zimmerman 1B Virginia
Adam Eaton OF Miami (Ohio)
Andrew Stevenson* OF LSU

*Not on World Series 25-man roster


Milwaukee Brewers

UC Irvine Athletics Keston Hiura

Brewers ace Brandon Woodruff was a star in last year's postseason run, which included hitting an unlikely home run off Clayton Kershaw. Woodruff spent three years at Mississippi State, appearing in 34 games and three NCAA regionals. 

Rookie second baseman Keston Hiura won the NCAA batting title in 2017, hitting a whopping .442 with a .567 on-base percentage at UC Irvine. He was selected ninth overall in the 2017 MLB Draft and has 19 homers in just 84 games as a Brewer.

Chase Anderson P Oklahoma
Ray Black* P Pittsburgh
Corbin Burnes* P St. Mary's (CA)
Jay Jackson P Furman
Jimmy Nelson* P Alabama
Drew Pomeranz P Mississippi
Brent Suter P Harvard
Taylor Williams* P Kent State
Brandon Woodruff P Mississippi State
David Freitas* C Hawaii
Yasmani Grandal C Miami (Fla.)
Keston Hiura 2B UC Irvine
Travis Shaw 3B Kent State
Eric Thames 1B Pepperdine
Ryan Braun OF Miami (Fla.)

*Was not on NL Wild Card Game 25-man roster

Oakland Athletics

Cal State Fullerton Athletics Matt Chapman

Matt Chapman, a 2018 Gold Glove winner and 2019 MLB All-Star, hit .312 with 24 extra-base hits his junior season at Cal State Fullerton before being selected 25th overall in 2014. He finished his Titans career with two All-Big West team honors and an ABCA Gold Glove Award.

Lefty Sean Manaea was a three-year standout at Indiana State and closed out his collegiate career with 290 strikeouts, third most in ISU history. 

Ryan Butcher P Rowan (DIII)
Mike Fiers P Nova Southeastern (DII)
Sean Manaea P Indiana State
Daniel Mengden* P Texas A&M
A.J. Puk P Florida
Tanner Roark* P Illinois
Blake Treinen* P South Dakota State
Lou Trivino* P Slippery Rock (DII)
Sean Murphy C Wright State
Josh Phegley C Indiana
Seth Brown 1B Lewis & Clark (DIII)
Mark Canha 1B California
Matt Chapman 3B Cal State Fullerton
Sheldon Neuse 3B Oklahoma
Marcus Semien SS California
Khris Davis OF Cal State Fullerton
Chad Pinder OF Virginia Tech

*Was not on AL Wild Card Game 25-man roster

Minnesota Twins

Utah Athletics CJ Cron

Twins first baseman C.J. Cron was Utah's first first-round pick in program history (2011 MLB Draft). Cron was a two-time Dick Howser Trophy semifinalist and was twice named Mountain West Conference Player of the Year. 

Catcher Mitch Garver was also a MWC standout, playing at New Mexico from 2010-13. He batted .390 with 21 doubles, five triples and six home runs as a senior in 2013.

Randy Dobnak P Alderson Broaddus (DII)
Tyler Duffey P Rice
Sam Dyson* P South Carolina
Kyle Gibson P Missouri
Ryne Harper* P Austin Peay
Trevor Hildenberger* P California
Taylor Rogers P Kentucky
Sergio Romo P Colorado Mesa (DII)
Cody Stashak P St. John's
Jason Castro C Stanford
Mitch Garver C New Mexico
C.J. Cron 1B Utah
Ryan LaMarre* OF Michigan
Ian Miller* OF Wagner
LaMonte Wade Jr.* OF Maryland

*Was not on ALDS 25-man roster

Atlanta Braves

Steven Branscombe | USA TODAY Sports Dansby Swanson

Like LA's Buehler, Braves shortstop Dansby Swanson was a huge part of Vanderbilt's run to the 2014 College World Series title. Swanson was named the tournament's Most Outstanding Player with a .323 average, three doubles and five runs in Omaha. He was selected No. 1 overall by the Arizona Diamondbacks in 2015 after three seasons at Vandy.

Josh Donaldson was a catcher, along with third base, back in his playing days at Auburn (2005-07). As a sophomore, he led the Tigers with 10 homers while throwing out 15 of 38 attempted base stealers at catcher.

Jerry Blevins* P Dayton
Grant Dayton* P Auburn
Dallas Kuechel P Arkansas
Mark Melancon P Arizona
Sean Newcomb P Hartford
Darren O'Day P Florida
Chad Sobotka* P South Carolina Upstate
Josh Tomlin P Texas Tech
Jeremy Walker* P Gardner-Webb
Kyle Wright* P Vanderbilt
Josh Donaldson 3B Auburn
Dansby Swanson SS Vanderbilt
Adam Duvall OF Louisville
Matt Joyce OF Florida Southern (DII)
Nick Markakis OF Young Harris (DII)

*Was not on NLDS 25-man roster

Los Angeles Dodgers

Virginia Athletics Chris Taylor

Walker Buehler was a 2014 College World Series champion at Vanderbilt as a sophomore. The righty earned one win in Omaha during the run, no-hitting UC Irvine in 5.1 shutout innings. 

Chris Taylor (Virginia) and Justin Turner (Cal State Fullerton) were named co-NLCS MVPs in 2017, the first of two straight pennants won by the Dodgers. Taylor had a .400 career batting average in NCAA tournament games, including a walk-off single in 2011 Super Regionals to send the Cavs to the CWS. From 2003-06, Turner was a key cog in the Titans' lineup, finishing with a .328 career average.   

Walker Buehler P Vanderbilt
Dylan Floro* P Cal State Fullerton
Tony Gonsolin* P St. Mary's (CA)
Rich Hill Michigan
Joe Kelly P UC Riverside
Adam Kolarek P Maryland
Josh Sborz* P Virginia
Ross Stripling P Texas A&M
Austin Barnes* C Arizona State
Will Smith  C  Louisville
Matt Beaty 1B Belmont
David Freese 1B South Alabama
Jedd Gyorko* 3B West Virginia
Max Muncy 1B Baylor
Edwin Ríos* 3B Florida International
Justin Turner 3B Cal State Fullerton
A.J. Pollock OF Notre Dame
Chris Taylor OF Virginia

*Was not on NLDS 25-man roster

Tampa Bay Rays

Old Dominion Athletics Ryan Yarbrough

Mike Zunino's 2010-12 run at Florida was littered with accolades, including two first-team All-American selections, a Dick Howser Trophy, a Johnny Bench Award and an SEC Player of the Year honor. The catcher hit .327 with 47 homers and 175 RBIs in 193 games as a Gator.

Ryan Yarbrough is one of three Old Dominion Monarchs on playoff teams, and the most recent to come out of college. The southpaw was 10-11 with a 3.89 ERA and a save from 2013-14 at ODU.

Jalen Beeks* P Arkansas
José De León* P Southern
Oliver Drake P Navy
Peter Fairbanks* P Missouri
Andrew Kittredge* P Washington
Brendan McKay P Louisville
Emilio Pagán P Belmont Abbey (DII)
Colin Poche P Dallas Baptist
Austin Pruitt* P Houston
Trevor Richards* P Drury (DII)
Cole Sulser* P Dartmouth
Ryan Yarbrough P Old Dominion
Mike Zunino C Florida
Michael Brosseau* 3B Oakland
Matt Duffy 3B Long Beach State
Brandon Lowe 2B Maryland
Nate Lowe* 1B Mississippi State
Eric Sogard 2B Arizona State
Joey Wendle 2B West Chester (Pa.) (DII)

*Was not on ALDS 25-man roster

St. Louis Cardinals

Illinois State Athletics Paul DeJong

Paul Goldschmidt slugged 36 home runs and drove in 170 RBIs in three years at Texas State, both program records. Thirty-five of those homers came in his latter two seasons. In 2015, Goldschmidt became the first former Texas State baseball player to have his number retired.

First-time 2019 MLB All-Star Paul DeJong was a fixture all around the diamond for Illinois State from 2013-15. The Cardinals shortstop split time at shortstop, second base, third base, catcher and right field after redshirting his 2012 freshman season. In 2014, he led the MVC with 14 homers.

John Brebbia P Elon
Ryan Helsley P Northeastern State (DII)
Dakota Hudson P Mississippi State
Dominic Leone* P Clemson
Mike Mayers* P Mississippi
Miles Mikolas P Nova Southeastern (DII)
Andrew Miller P North Carolina
Daniel Ponce de Leon P Embry-Riddle (DII)
Michael Wacha* P Texas A&M
Tyler Webb P South Carolina
Joe Hudson* C Notre Dame
Andrew Knizner* C North Carolina State
Matt Wieters C Georgia Tech
Matt Carpenter 3B TCU
Paul DeJong SS Illinois State
Tommy Edman SS Stanford
Paul Goldschmidt 1B Texas State
Kolten Wong 2B Hawaii
Harrison Bader OF  Florida

*Was not on NLCS 25-man roster

New York Yankees

Fresno State Athletics Aaron Judge - Fresno State

Aaron Judge has won both a college and Major League Home Run Derby. Five years before his victory at the 2017 MLB All-Star Game in Miami, Judge won the 2012 TD Ameritrade College Home Run Derby in Omaha as a member of Fresno State. He was a two-time All-WAC first-teamer before the Yankees drafted him in 2013.

DJ LeMahieu was named a starter as a true freshman in 2008 and batted .344 in two seasons with LSU. The three-time MLB All-Star was a member of the 2009 College World Series All-Tournament Team after leading the Tigers to the program's sixth national championship.

Chance Adams* P Dallas Baptist
Cory Gearrin* P Mercer
Chad Green P Louisville
J.A. Happ P Northwestern
Tommy Kahnle P Lynn (DII)
Michael King* P Boston College
Tyler Lyons P Oklahoma State
Jordan Montgomery* P South Carolina
Adam Ottavino P Northeastern
James Paxton P Kentucky
Mike Ford* 1B Princeton
DJ LeMahieu 2B LSU
Luke Voit* 1B Missouri State
Brett Gardner OF Charleston
Aaron Judge OF Fresno State

*Was not on ALCS 25-man roster

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