The Boston Red Sox have selected position players in the first round for five straight years and continued going in that direction in the 2023 Major League Baseball Draft on Sunday night.

Boston selected catcher Kyle Teel with the No. 14 selection, becoming the highest selection from the University of Virginia since 2017 — Pavin Smith was drafted seventh by the Arizona Diamondbacks.

Teel, 21, was on a tear at the plate throughout his junior year at Virginia, attacking the record books in several ways. The left-handed hitter batted .407 with 13 home runs, totaling 105 base hits — all career highs — while setting a school record with 25 doubles. During his three-year collegiate run with the Cavaliers, Teel also blasted four grand slams, the most of any UVA player ever in program history. He was named the 2023 ACC Player of the Year.

Playing a career-best 65 games this past season — all behind the plate — for Virginia, Teel caught 15 runners stealing on 24 attempts and committed just three errors, notching a .995 fielding percentage.

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Teel stands at 6-foot-1 and is considered a nightmare in the batter’s box when facing right-handed pitching. He maintained an above-.400 batting average throughout his entire final campaign at Virginia, reaching base 38 consecutive times to start the year, which ended up being a team lead.

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Prior to Sunday night’s draft, Teel was ranked No. 7 among all draft prospects, according to, and even has experience playing in both outfield corners (52 games) in college. Scouts have also noted that the athletic potential could give Teel the ability to even play the infield, particularly at second base.

Boston hadn’t selected a catcher in the first round since drafting Blake Swihart at No. 26 back in 2011.

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Featured image via Dylan Widger/USA TODAY Sports Images