WHITING | Scouts from the White Sox, Phillies, Yankees and Rangers watched Tuesday's Midwest Collegiate League All-Star game at Oil City Stadium, and there was certainly no shortage of local talent to be evaluated.
Lake Central grad Jimmy McNamara showcased his talent in the first inning as the starter for the South All-Star team. The Oilmen southpaw struck out two and gave up two hits in a scoreless first inning, displaying a slider with wicked movement, all while working at his trademark extremely quick pace.
“It was one inning so you just have the mentality that it's just one inning and you don't hold anything back,” McNamara said, unaware of the scouts in attendance.
McNamara, who has given up just one earned run in 20 2/3 innings pitched this summer (0.44 ERA), was just happy to be selected.
“This is awesome,” he said. “I'm really happy to be here to play for the Oilmen in the first place. To be playing well enough to start the All-Star game is really awesome.”
The Oilmen weren't the only team that had local representation. Highland grad John Livingston, a member of the Southland Vikings, batted sixth for the South All-Stars. Whiting grad and Chicago Zephyrs pitcher Andrew Lowe pitched the third inning for the North All-Stars.
Though Lowe struggled and gave up three runs, it wasn't long ago that he thought he would never play again. He had surgery on his right hand due to a cut tendon in December 2012, and Tommy John surgery in January 2012. Lowe dropped his classes at Wisconsin-Whitewater and moved home.
“Going through injuries and from school coming into this summer, I didn't know what to expect,” Lowe said. “It was a goal to be in the All-Star game. It was awesome when I got that text message letting me know.”
White Sox scout Ryan Dorsey wasn't looking at anyone in particular, but noted the advantages of having this game so close to Chicago.
“Being the home team, you definitely want to cover your area better than anyone else,” he said. “You don't want to miss guys in your own backyard. This is my first time out, so I'm glad I got to make it over here and check these guys out.”
Other local Oilmen players who were selected to the game were Gavit's Aveeno Nasiloski, Bishop Noll's Matt Pobereyko and 2013 Bishop Noll grad Danny Pobereyko, who is getting collegiate pitching experience and building confidence even though he has yet to pitch for Butler. He got the start in the Oilmen's game against the U.S. Military All-Stars on July 1.
“(I've built) a whole lot more (confidence) since high school,” Danny Pobereyko said. “Especially against the Military All-Stars; that was a pretty good team, hitting-wise. To give up only one (run) and five (hits), I felt like that was a pretty good job.”