Max Beatty threw a party.
It wasn’t just any ordinary gathering – it was the final day of the 2013 Major League first-year draft.
Beatty, a right-handed pitcher from Fort Vancouver High School and Pacific Lutheran University, hooked up his laptop to the family’s big-screen television back home in Vancouver. All day, the selections were monitored closely.
Finally, a phone call came in during the 32nd round from the Los Angeles Angels. They were peeking into the next round, and told Beatty – the No. 2 NCAA Division III prospect – to be on alert.
One team – the San Diego Padres – could not wait that long. As Beatty was talking to the Angels, a room full of his parents and close friends erupted as the Lutes’ senior came across the screen as going with the 958th pick.
“I had a couple talks with teams, and I was pretty confident it would be sometime today,” Beatty said. “I know how the draft works – it is a pretty suspenseful deal. We were glued in front of the computer screen all day.”
What makes this story extra heart-warming is that Beatty missed all of 2012 with testicular cancer. In fact, he withdrew from school that spring semester for chemotherapy treatment in Vancouver.
Last summer, tests showed he was cancer-free, so he played in the summer West Coast League for the Corvallis Knights, then returned to PLU.
And this spring, he started a team-high 13 games, going 7-5 with a 2.48 earned-run average. He was voted the team’s most valuable player, and was named to the all-Northwest Conference second team.
“This is what I did it for,” Beatty said. “Obviously I hit the big speed bump, and that delayed me one year. But I am back to where I am, and this is so satisfying.”
* The Seattle Mariners added to their in-state haul with four final-day selections – Kentlake High School shortstop Jordan Cowan (37th round, No. 1,107), Rogers High third baseman Michael Sexton (38th round, No. 1,137), West Seattle High pitcher Sam Hellinger (39th round, No. 1,167) and Columbia River High catcher Mike McCann (40th round, No. 1,197).
* Fife High’s program had a couple of players drafted. One was Nick Lemoncelli (35th round, No. 1,040), a left-handed pitcher at Lower Columbia CC. And the other was two-time SPSL 2A player of the year Brock Carpenter (39th round, No. 1,168), a shortstop who is headed off to Seattle University.
* Seven Oregon State University players were selected in this draft. One of them was pitcher Scott Schultz, a Gig Harbor High product who went in the 17th round (No. 502).