Gonzaga’s rotation last year featured two studs, Marco Gonzales and Tyler Olson, both of which were selected very high in the 2013 MLB Draft. However, before those two were in Gonzaga’s rotation, Clayton Mortensen was the main guy for the Zags. Mortensen could be thought of a trailblazer of sorts, as a successful pitcher to come out of the University, and is one of the first Gonzaga pitcher’s in recent year’s to have success in the major leagues. Here is a brief recap of Mortensens career in the big leagues.
Although Mortensen only played one season with the Zags, he was one of the best prospects that the program has ever seen. As a junior in college, he posted a 6-8 record in 17 appearances. He struck out 89 batters in that season for the bulldogs, and recorded 2 saves.
Mortensen has been traded three times throughout his five year MLB career, and has played for four different organizations. He was drafted by the St. Louis Cardinals as the 36th overall pick in the 2007 major league draft. He was invited to the teams spring training in 2009, but did not make the major league team. After three trades, he ended up in Boston with the Red Sox organization, where he finally cemented himself in the major leagues.
This season, Mortensen has accumulated a 5.32 ERA and a 1-2 win-loss record. Unfortunately for Mortensen, he was placed on the 15 day DL with a hip injury. Hopefully Moretensen will retain his spot on the Red Sox during his rehabilitation. Prior to his injury, Mortensen was pitching in the Boston bullpen, mostly as a late-innings type of guy.