Valdosta Daily Times

Local Sports

June 8, 2014

Cleveland drafts VSU’s DeMasi in 31st round

Former Cook standout Betts selected by Pittsburgh

VALDOSTA — Dominic DeMasi was already a very productive pitcher.

However, when they tabbed the Valdosta State junior right-hander in the 31st round of the Major League Baseball draft Saturday, the Cleveland Indians were more interested in what they believe DeMasi can become.

“He has such an upside,” VSU coach Greg Guilliams said. “He obviously had a very good season, but when you look at his frame — he’s 6-4, lanky, his arm is loose — in my opinion, they’re drafting Dom not for what he is today but for what they think he’s going to be in 3-4-5 years.”

In his junior campaign, DeMasi was a workhorse for the Blazers. The 6-foot-3, 195-pounder threw a team-high 80 2-3 innings in 13 games, crafting a team-low 2.79 ERA. DeMasi tossed three complete games, including two shutouts, while striking out 77 batters. Opponents hit just .216 against DeMasi.

“Dom passes the smell test,” Guilliams added. “Dom looks the part. When you see and look at him, you say ‘That’s a pitcher.’ He’s tall, atheltic, loose arm.

“He has three pitches — a fastball, a good breaking ball and a good changeup. But they’re looking at what Dom could be and not what he is today.”

He also played the part of a draft pick Saturday night, overjoyed when he got word from the Indians that they were making him the 938th pick of the draft.

“It was breathtaking,” he said after becoming VSU’s first pick since Brandon Decker in 2010. Overall, DeMasi is the Valdosta State program’s 33rd draft pick.

“It’s a dream, just getting an opportunity and I’m very thankful for it. I’m just looking forward to playing ball again.”

Now the Savannah native has to decide whether to begin his professional career and sign with the Indians, or to return to VSU for one final season. DeMasi, who also serves as the punter on the Blazers’ football team, appeared in 17 games as a sophomore, throwing 41 innings with a 3.73 ERA after pitching 10 times in 2012 with a 3.38 ERA and .211 average against.

That decision wasn’t set to begin until later Saturday night after DeMasi heard back from Cleveland officials, and then had a chance to talk things over with his family.

“They’re going to call me back later and we’re going to talk and figure everything out,” he said. “They called to congratulate me and said they’d call back later (Saturday) night.

“I’m not sure about that yet. I’ve got to talk with my family and figure out what’s good for me.”

Text Only
Local Sports
  • Former Blazer Kugbila out for season

    Now, after missing the 2013 season with a knee injury, this signals another hardship for the promising guard.

    July 25, 2014

  • LHS baseball signing Two Lowndes grads sign scholarships

    Lowndes graduates Henry Hoff and Nick Higginbotham decided to take the next step in their respective baseball careers together on Thursday as both signed a letter-of-intent with Abraham Baldwin Agricultural College in Tifton.

    July 25, 2014 1 Photo

  • 150723-Lowndes_Brooks5.jpg Winding Down

    In its final 7-on-7 test of the summer, Randy McPherson was pleased with how the Lowndes football team looked Wednesday morning.
    Brooks County coach Maurice Freeman, on the other hand, was worried about the kind of hole the Trojans would have dug for themselves at Martin Stadium against the Vikings and Lafayette (Fla.) had it been a real game.

    July 24, 2014 3 Photos

  • Grable signs with Tampa Bay

    Another former Valdosta State football player joined the ranks of the National Football League when linebacker Jeremy Grable signed with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on Wednesday morning.

    July 23, 2014

  • MaryAlice.jpg Just Keep Running

    Forrest Gump once said, "I used to run to get to where I was going, but I never thought it would take me anywhere." In the case of 18 year-old Mary Alice Smoot, anywhere is Tampa, Fla.
    After four years of unparalleled success running cross-country at Valwood, Smoot will continue running competitively next season at the University of Tampa.

    July 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • 10U ELITE World Series Champs.jpg DKSA Elite win USSSA Global World Series

    DKSA ELITE just continues to win, the 10U team’s latest victory came in the USSSA Global World Series held in Destin, Fla. July 8-12.

    July 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • Lowndes_McPherson.jpg Milestones on tap for upcoming season

    Some milestones are destined to occur, like when Georgia Christian hosts David Emanuel on Aug. 22 in the Generals’ first varsity football game since the late 1960s.
    Others will have to wait and see what continues to take shape come Friday when teams can begin fall practice, and especially Aug. 1 when teams can suit up in pads for the first time, such as can Valdosta win its record 24th state title, or can Lowndes capture its fourth state championship under Randy McPherson, or can Valwood and coach Ashley Henderson play in its third straight GISA state championship game?
    As we start to find out the answers to those questions in just a few short weeks — the regular season is just 31 days away — there should be a few more milestones for area coaches to mark 2014 right along with the Generals getting back on the gridiron.

    July 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • ACC_Jimbo.jpg Back on top

    July 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • ACC_Petrino.jpg Petrino returns to Louisville for first ACC season

    July 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • Braves_Marlins JUpton.jpg Jones lifts Marlins past Braves in 10

    July 22, 2014 1 Photo

Blazers Blog