New York Mets: Pride of Perkins starts Thursday night
If you’re like me, you need a reason to get interested in any one particular baseball game. So here’s a reason. Thursday night, 2004 Perkins-Tryon graduate Jeremy Hefner will be the starting pitcher for the New York Mets, who host the Padres.
Here is Hefner’s story. He originally was drafted by the Mets in the 46th round of the 2004 amateur draft but instead enrolled at Seminole State. The Mets didn’t give up. They drafted Hefner in the 48th round the next June, and again, Hefner didn’t sign. He went on to Oral Roberts University and eventually was drafted in the fifth round of the 2007 draft. This time, Hefner signed and began his minor league odyssey.
Eugene Emeralds in 2007. Fort Wayne Wizards and Lake Elsinore Storm in 2008. Lake Elsinore Storm & Portland Beavers in 2009. San Antonio Missions in 2010. Tucson Padres in 2011. Buffalo Bisons in 2012.
The Pirates claimed Hefner off waivers last November, then a month later the Mets claimed him off waivers after Pittsburgh designated Hefner for assignment to the minors. Hefner made his major league debut on April 23. He pitched three scoreless innings and was sent back to Buffalo. But last week, Hefner was summoned back to the Mets. Saturday, when starter Miguel Batista suffered a strained back in the third inning against Toronto, Hefner came on and pitched five innings. He gave up two earned runs and suffered the loss but was impressive enough that the Mets named him to start Thursday night.
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