The four years have gone by quickly since the St. Louis Cardinals selected Stephen Piscotty in the 1st Round (36th overall) of the 2012 amateur draft.
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“I remember we were in the playoffs and I was pretty focused on that–it’s kind of weird how they put the draft right in the middle of that post season, it’s a little distracting,” said Piscotty recently. “Remember going home, we had just sealed the deal with winning our regional and I went home for the draft the next day.”
Stephen had a family party for the occasion and actually saw his name on television before he received the phone call with the news of his selection.
“It wasn’t too crazy, my agent did a great job of handling a lot of what was going on and giving me realistic expectations so I kind of had an understanding of what was going to happen,” he said. “That was nice because I was able to just enjoy it.”
“My junior year, I got the last four starts,” he recalled. “Started the championship game in our regional in 2012. Won that game, my buddy came in and saved it. Came in relief and saved the game, so yeah–I pitched quite a bit.”
In fact, the right-hander went 6-2 with a 3.05 ERA over 12 games and four starts that season for Stanford. He struck out 20 batters in 41.1 innings and walking nine.
“We had a couple of injuries and just needed someone to pitch,” explained Piscotty. “I had pitched in the fall practices and was able to do it, so they were like we’ll give it a shot.”
So how appealing would it be to take the mound again–especially in a big league game?
“I would love to,” Piscotty answered with a smile, adding he has made Mike Matheny aware of that desire.
But when Ruben Tejada recently came in for mop up duty for St. Louis, the Cardinals and allowed a pair of home runs, the manager noted that the infielder probably was hurt by having a little too much pitching ability–basically enough to get himself in trouble.
“It could hurt me,” acknowledged Piscotty of possibly being in the same position. “But I threw submarine too, so that might be something different.”
“(Chad) Bradford, (Brad) Ziegler–those are the main two that I remember,” said Piscotty, who began throwing submarine just messing around and found he could command it.
The Cardinals chose Piscotty with their compensatory pick for losing Albert Pujols in free agency. They’ll hope to repeat that success in tomorrow’s MLB Draft as besides the 23rd overall pick, they have two compensatory selections–33rd (John Lackey) and 34th (Jason Heyward).
photo credit: Bill Greenblatt/UPI