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SHOW's DeNato still looking to get drafted

02/01/2014, 12:00pm PST
By UT-John Maffei

DeNato still looking to get drafted

Joey DeNato didn't expect to get drafted high. But after a fine three-year baseball career at Indiana and a junior year in which he was 10-2, the former Torrey Pines High star figured some major-league clubs would take a chance. Projected to be taken in the middle rounds, the left-hander's name was never called. "My career goal is to get drafted and play in the major leagues," DeNato said. "Probably every kid who plays baseball has that dream at some point. And I understand it doesn't happen for everyone. "I'm not the most projectable guy in the eyes of the scouts." But he can pitch. The 5-foot-10, 175-pound DeNato is 4-1 this season with a 2.39 ERA. Now a senior, his career numbers read 28-9 with a 2.78 ERA. He has pitched 298 innings for the Hoosiers and is the school's all-time strikeout leader with 244. He was a respectable 7-3 as both a redshirt freshman and sophomore. Last season, however, was a breakout year. He went 10-2 with a 2.53 ERA, pitching 103 2/3 innings for the Hoosiers. The highlight was a complete-game shutout of Louisville in the College World Series. "The College World Series was cool, very cool," DeNato said. "The team played with confidence and intensity all season. We dealt with pressure very well. "I'd love to get back there again." Indiana is 12-9 this season, so that may not happen. "I was disappointed I wasn't drafted, but I was content to come back to school because I have so many friends here," DeNato said. "My goal is still to play pro ball, so I want to make the most of the season. I realize this might be my last year of playing. So I want to enjoy it. Winning is fun." After a brilliant career at Torrey Pines, in which he had a 28-5 record and was 10-2 as a senior, DeNato narrowed his college choices to Oregon, USD and Indiana. "I visited Indiana and from the minute I stepped on campus, I knew this was the place for me," DeNato said. "And I haven't been disappointed. College has been awesome, more than I expected." Now he'd like to take the next step.

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