Future Tiger Fidrych Did Well in '04

Chris Fidrych, a 6-foot 220-pound left-handed pitcher from Beaufort and a distant cousin of former Major Leaguer Mark "the bird" Fidrych and a Clemson signee, had a solid senior season for Beaufort High School.

Fidrych pitched 67 innings his senior year and compiled a 1.07 ERA while striking out 146, including a one-hit shutout of Battery Creek on the road to wrap up the region title. He struck out 19 in one game against Hilton Head High School (there's only 21 outs in high school games because they're 7 innings) to fall one strikeout short of matching the state record.

He also was selected for the NC-SC Select Challenge all-star game that was played at Coastal Federal Field in Myrtle Beach Saturday night.

In a scenario slightly reminiscent of Tony Sipp's performance against Georgia in the Athens Regional, Fidrych entered the game in the sixth inning nursing a 2-1 lead with 2 runners on base and nobody out and didn't allow any runs to score. Fidrych struck out the first two batters he faced and the third batter grounded out to the shortstop to end the inning.

Fidrych gave up a leadoff double to start the seventh, but the second batter grounded out and he struck out the next two to escape without giving up a run. Fidrych pitched three scoreless innings, giving up just one hit, walking none and striking out five. Fidrych left after the eighth, allowing East Clarendon's Dustin Welch to earn the save.

South Carolina beat North Carolina 3-1 and Fidrych was named MVP of the game. Amazingly, he was not drafted last week and will play for Clemson next season.

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