Pokes in the Pros - Nick McCurdy

Former Oklahoma State pitcher Nick McCurdy has enjoyed his heavy workload this season for the Frederick Keys, a Single-A affiliate of the Baltimore Orioles.

McCurdy tied teammate Ryan Keefer for the Carolina League lead with 63 pitching appearances.

This is McCurdy's first full season as a reliever since being drafted in the 35th round by Baltimore in 2002. McCurdy, who has a fastball that can reach 93 mph and an effective slider, was 7-17 as a starter in his pro career before the Orioles shifted him to the bullpen late last season.

He finished 2004 with a 6-3 record and three saves with a 3.77 ERA for Frederick.

"I think I've got the stuff for the bullpen, not a starter," McCurdy said to the Washington Post.

McCurdy, 24, was a reliever for two seasons at Jefferson Davis Community College. He was drafted after both seasons by the Colorado Rockies, but decided eventually to go instead to OSU, where he became a starter.

In 2001, McCurdy was 7-5 for the Cowboys and his 3.61 ERA was the best in their rotation. His top moments were a win over Oklahoma on May 13 to win Big 12 Pitcher of the Week honors and a complete-game win over Iowa State in the Big 12 Tournament. McCurdy finished his OSU career by going was 5-1 with a 4.34 ERA in 2002.

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