July 24, 2007
Aaron Poreda became the first USF baseball player ever drafted in the first round of the Major League Baseball Amateur Draft in 2007 when he was selected by the Chicago White Sox. The Moraga native turned in a dominating career on the Hilltop and finished his Green and Career owning a share of third place in career victories (17), ranks sixth in career ERA (2.61), seventh in career strikeouts (169) and games started (33), and owns eighth place in innings (245.0).
Poreda is currently pitching for Great Falls White Sox in the Rookie Pioneer League. The southpaw owns a 1.50 ERA and has struck out 14 in 12.0 innings, while allowing seven hits. Poreda recounts his USF experience below in a diary entry exclusive for USFDons.com.
When I came to USF, this was a major stepping stone because of the elevated level of play. I didn't know if I was good enough to compete at this level. After my freshman year of coming out of the pen I knew I had the ability to compete at this level, but didn't know if my arm could go through the wear and tear as a starting pitcher.
At USF I really learned the meaning of hard work, giving 100% and the meaning of sacrifice. I put countless hours of work for myself and the program. I listened to what the coaching staff had to say and used that information to better myself in the game of baseball and in life. Through Coach Moore's crazy personality and work ethic I was able to develop as a pitcher, a person and can live a happier life. All of the coaches taught me so much that I am eternally grateful for their commitment to the program.
When we made the Regionals for the first time in school history, it was the highlight of my career. Pitching against Nebraska with 10,000 fans in red screaming is a moment that I'll never forget. This was also another step in my career because I knew that if I can compete on this stage against the number six rated team in the country I could compete against anyone. This game was my "coming-out" party on the national scene.
As my junior year rolled around there was a lot of hype on me and a lot pressure coming from the Major League scouts. Every time I picked up a baseball there were 20 to 30 scouts judging and probing me. I tried to focus on the stuff I could control and just let the pieces fall. Most importantly, I was just making the best out of my opportunity and trying to have fun.
Draft day was another huge step in my baseball career. It is an unbelievable accomplishment that only happens in your dreams. Being drafted in the 1st round is so rewarding that it makes all the pain and suffering I had to go through obsolete.
Thanks again to all the coaches and players that helped me along myjourney.