On Friday, former Marianna High School standout pitcher Michael Mader became a Miami Marlin, taken in the 3rd round with the 105th pick of the Major League Draft. Michael is now gearing up for Minor League ball with the Batavia Muckdogs, and on Monday, News 13 caught up with him before he flew out to chase his big league dreams.
Michael spent the last two seasons at Chipola, earning Panhandle Conference Pitcher of the Year honors as a freshman. He signed with Florida State in the fall, and says giving up the opportunity to become a Nole was a tough decision to make, but he was excited to become a Marlin.
Michael said the Mariners were set to take him with the 80th pick in the 3rd Round, but he had to tell them no after they tried to take him for less then his slot worth, but he said Monday it's all worked out, as he's happy to be a Marlin and be involved with the same organization as another former Marianna standout- Jeff Mathis.
"He actually text me yesterday and asked me if I was excited, if I was going to mini camp and all that," said Michael of Jeff. "He told me he found out right before the game started. It was pretty cool of him to text me and ask me if I was excited and stuff, and he told me it's not a sprint, it's a marathon."
"I am just proud it worked out for him and being there with Jeff," said Chipola head coach Jeff Johnson. "Jeff with the Marlins, a guy from Marianna who he can lean on and talk with and all of that will be something in spring training. Hopefully one of these days they will be together somewhere else in the big leagues. But it's just somebody to be down there when he goes to his first spring training and all, that'll be big for him."
We'll have more on Michael's journey this week on News 13.