Matt Adams drafted by St. Louis Cardinals
Thursday, June 11, 2009
By Josh Mlot Sports Writer
PHILIPSBURG - The waiting and dreaming are finally over for Matt Adams.
Years of hard work and hours of anxiety in recent days have paid off for the former Philipsburg-Osceola baseball standout, who was drafted by the St. Louis Cardinals in the 23rd round of the 2009 Major League Baseball draft on Wednesday.
"It feels great just knowing the team had interest in me," Adams said.
"It was real emotional to sit at the house and get the phone call with me and my family; as the moment sank in, knowing I'm a professional baseball player now."
After a tremendous junior year at Slippery Rock University that garnered honors as the Division II National Player of the Year, Adams had heard projections that placed him as high as even the seventh round of the draft.
Instead he had to sweat it out, getting the call as the 699th player selected in the draft.
The wait may have been nerve-wracking, but Adams is happy with the end result - even if he has to forgo his long-time position of catcher and make the shift to first base.
"They've (the Cardinals) got a great organization," he said. "They focus real heavily on player development and worrying about getting everybody they drafted onto the right team. Everybody has equal opportunity to advance in the system."
The next step for Adams is to get his first professional deal worked out. That process is underway right now, as his professional advisor, based out of Ohio, is in talks with the Cards to iron out a contract and get the player out on a minor league field.
Those efforts should be finalized some time today, at which point the Philipsburg native will learn what uniform he will be slipping on this summer.
Adams will be taking his sweet swing to one of St. Louis' short-season affiliates, based either in Johnson City, Tennessee or Batavia, New York.
A call to Batavia would afford him the opportunity to return home during the season, as the Muckdogs play in the same league as the State College Spikes.
"They said I'll probably be shipped out this weekend," Adams said. "It's either the Appalachian League down in Tennessee or the New York-Penn League over in Batavia."
Another central Pennsylvania native got the call during Tuesday's MLB draft action, as Johnsonburg's Tobias Streich went in the fifth round to the Minnesota Twins.
Streich played college ball as a catcher at West Virginia University.