As Old Mill senior Josh Hader was driving toward Camden Yards yesterday, he was thinking about the news conference for the 31st annualBrooks Robinson All-Star game that he was about to attend at the warehouse.
"Then my phone rang and it was a friend of my dad's calling, telling me I'd been drafted by the Orioles," Hader said. "I didn't believe him. I thought he was playing a joke. After I hung up, the phone rang again and it was Dean [Albany, Orioles' regional scout] telling me I really had been drafted.
"I didn't know what to say. I was speechless. But now; Wow! I'm an Oriole. It's unbelievable and overwhelming."
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Oriole Park at Camden Yards, 333 W Camden St # 1, Baltimore, MD 21201, USA
It's been quite a week for the 18-year-old lefthanded pitcher. He graduated Tuesday, got drafted in the 19th round Wednesday by his hometown team and Sunday he'll play at Oriole Park following the Orioles-Phillies game as a member of the Brooks Robinson South All-Stars. Rosters for the South and North teams were introduced during Wednesday's news conference. The Brooks Robinson game is the only All-Star game in Maryland that features the best senior players from each region of the state.
During the season, Hader was 10-0, with an 0.39 ERA. Last week he was invited to work out for the Orioles and the Miami Marlins. Now drafted, he said his No. 1 priority is to get signed.
"I'm really happy for him," South River senior Nick Sia said before asking to have his picture taken with Hader. "He was a relative nobody at the start of the season. He came out of nowhere. It shows how far hard work can take you. But I got a hit off him during the season, I didn't strike out. And he was drafted before Ryan Ripken [who was taken in the 20th round by the Orioles]."
Besides Hader and Sia, other local players selected for the South team include: Brandon O'Malley, Northeast; Sean Miller, Archbishop Spalding; and Nick Freeberger, Archbishop Spalding;
Area players for the North team include: Brandon Casas, Gilman; Kevin Mooney, North Harford; Lee Lawler, Reservoir; Nick Payne, Mount St. Joseph; Raul Shah, Mount Hebron; Lee Lipinski, Calvert Hall; Brady Maguire, North Harford; Alex Pastorius, Calvert Hall; Michael Austin, Century; and LaMonte Wade, St. Paul's.
The Maryland State Association of Baseball Coaches also introduced Team Maryland, the players who will represent the state at the 2012 Heartland Baseball Classic in Norman, Okla., June 19-23. The local players on that team are: Mooney; O'Malley; Kirk Haynes, Mount St. Joseph; Abel Arocho, Old Mill; Payne; Brady Maguire, North Harford; Jeff Patti, Hereford; and Robert Donald, Dulaney.