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Giants take third baseman in second round

Jones will decide between beginning pro career and attending Stanford

SAN FRANCISCO -- Ryder Jones' next ballclub will be a distinguished Bay Area organization. It's just a matter of which one he chooses.

The Giants drafted Jones, a left-handed-batting third baseman who also possesses pitching aptitude as a right-hander, with their second selection (64th overall) Thursday in the First-Year Player Draft.

Jones, who graduated from Watauga High School in Boone, N.C., with a 4.0 grade-point average, already has signed a letter of intent to attend Stanford University.

The 6-foot-3, 185-pounder hit .479 with 11 home runs and 43 RBIs during his senior season. He was named North Carolina's Gatorade Player of the Year for his exploits. Also, Jones' fastball reportedly hovers in the low 90-mph range, which helped him finish 4-3 with a 1.23 ERA, one save and 63 strikeouts in 40 1/3 innings.

Jones' father, Billy, recently completed his first season as head coach at Appalachian State University.

Chris Haft is a reporter for
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