Saturday, September 22, 2018
Sports

Move to the mound pays off for Riverview's Freddy Tarnok

Riverview High's Freddy Tarnok was the highest area selection on the second day of the Major League Baseball first-year player draft. Tarnok, who pitched and played shortstop, was taken 80th overall in the third round by the Atlanta Braves on Tuesday. He is being drafted as a right-handed pitcher, which is impressive considering he's only been a pitcher for two years.

"It's all very new to me," Tarnok said. "I've always thrown pretty hard and my high school team needed some pitching (last year). They tried me out on the mound and I just went with it."

Good decision.

At 6-foot-4, 195 pounds, Tarnok is a wiry pitcher who has a fastball that can reach 95 mph. As a senior, he was 7-0 with a 0.66 ERA. He pitched 53 innings, had 63 strikeouts and walked 11. He was also the Sharks' top hitter. He had a .393 average with 11 doubles and two home runs.

Tarnok said he likely will sign with the Braves and report to rookie camp. The approximate pick value for his slot is $709,000. He was committed to the University of Tampa.

"I'm pretty positive I'm going to sign and start playing," Tarnok said.

Tarnok said he wasn't sure where he would go in the draft. He had an idea that it would be early on the second day. Riverview coach Bill Leiby had no doubt that Tarnok would be a high-round pick. He saw him improve quickly as a pitcher.

"This was something we expected way back in October," Leiby said. "When you can get it up to 95 (mph) and touch 97, things are going to change for you. He's good all over, but he's going to be especially good as a pitcher."

More locals taken

Tarnok wasn't the only local player who ended up with the Braves on Tuesday. Former Sickles pitcher Troy Bacon was taken by Atlanta in the fourth round (110th overall). As a freshman at Santa Fe CC last year, Bacon was used as a reliever. He pitched 44 innings, struck out 59, had 15 saves and a 1.23 ERA.

This season Bacon pitched 40 innings and had 64 strikeouts and eight saves, all in relief. His approximate pick value is $487,400.

• With the 126th overall pick, the Giants selected University of Tampa right-hander Garrett Cave. Cave, who is from South Sumter High in Bushnell, transferred from Florida International prior to this season. He threw 61 ⅓ innings this season and had 84 strikeouts and a 4.23 ERA.

• Another area pitcher was taken in the fifth round. Former Alonso left-hander Nick Kennedy, brother of current Calvary Christian junior Eric Kennedy, was drafted 146th overall by the Rockies. Kennedy is a red-shirt sophomore at Texas. He was 8-2 with a 3.02 ERA in 53 ⅔ innings pitched this season.

• In the seventh round, former Lennard pitcher Jackson Tetreault (State College of Florida, Manatee-Sarasota) was taken by the Washington Nationals. Tetreault, a 6-foot-5, 170-pound sophomore who is committed to USF, had a 2.58 ERA with 105 strikeouts in 80 ⅓ innings.

Contact Rodney Page at [email protected] Follow @RodneyHomeTeam.

Comments
Football: Clearwater 34, Mitchell 7

Football: Clearwater 34, Mitchell 7

TRINITY — What at first looked like a defensive stalemate between Clearwater and Mitchell quickly turned into a rout.Clearwater had revenge on its mind Friday night after a 45-28 loss to Mitchell last year during the the regular seaso...
Updated: 7 hours ago
Football: Tampa Bay Tech 28, Hillsborough 27

Football: Tampa Bay Tech 28, Hillsborough 27

TAMPA — The decision was made as soon as Hillsborough got the ball back. Trailing by a touchdown with just over four minutes remaining against Tampa Bay Tech, the Terriers had the ball on their own 6-yard line.They hadn't been able to move the ...
Updated: 7 hours ago
Football: Largo 35, Countryside 0

Football: Largo 35, Countryside 0

LARGO — The offense was relentless and merciless Friday night, but that has been the case a lot recently. Largo is scoring points in bunches and getting contributions from everyone. Add in a defense that has been smothering, as well as a special team...
Updated: 7 hours ago
Rays bounce back big after a debacle

Rays bounce back big after a debacle

TORONTO — The way the Rays played Friday — all nine innings, lesson learned — in beating the Jays 11-3 provided the best answer on how, or even if, they could rebound from the crushing loss the night before that all but ended their ...
Updated: 6 hours ago

Football: Sickles 7, Freedom 3

TAMPA — Sickles needed a goal-line stand late in the fourth quarter to escape Freedom 7-3 on Homecoming and remain in the hunt for a Class 7A, District 8 title.Gryphons coach Patrick Murphy knew that facing the Patriots would be a battle. Freedom (1-...
Updated: 7 hours ago

Football: Armwood 24, Jefferson 14

SEFFNER — Armwood is becoming accustomed to winning close games.The Hawks fended off visiting Jefferson 24-14 in a defensive battle that featured a plethora of holding penalties in the second half.Armwood (3-1) earned two rushing touchdowns from juni...
Updated: 7 hours ago

Football: Plant 44, Gaither 34

TAMPA — Seventy-eight points. Eight hundred and 40 yards in total offense. Five players surpassing the century mark in yardage.When the game was over Friday, Plant had the edge in every category — including the scoreboard as the Panthers (3-1) opened...
Updated: 7 hours ago

Football: Robinson 28, Blake 25

TAMPA — Nevermind that Blake scored a go-ahead touchdown with 87 seconds left in the game.Forgive him, but part of Robinson junior Lateef Al-Shaa’ir was hoping it would happen just so it would set up a comeback.And it did.With 24 seconds left in the ...
Updated: 8 hours ago

Football: St. Petersburg 23, Gibbs 6

ST. PETERSBURG — St. Petersburg’s Aumhryaun Brown’s two touchdowns helped overcome the ejection of quarterback Tonio Shavers as the Green Devils cruised to a 23-6 win against Gibbs on Friday.As time expired during the first half, with the Green Devil...
Updated: 8 hours ago

Football: Plant City 24, East Bay 7

GIBSONTON — Plant City’s high-powered passing game gets most of the attention. But the Raiders’ defense is just as responsible for the team’s unbeaten start.In Plant City’s 24-7 road victory against East Bay in Class 7A, District 9 on Friday, the def...
Updated: 8 hours ago