A lifelong dream became reality for Seth Streich on Tuesday.
Streich, a junior at Ohio University, was selected in the sixth round with the 199th overall pick by the Oakland Athletics on the second day of the MLB Draft.
"I was fortunate enough to be drafted in the sixth round. When my name came up, it was really a once in a lifetime experience," Streich said. "Your name flashes, someone calls you and it's really a realization of your lifetime goal, your ultimate life's goal, coming into full view. The realization of that is really an incredible experience. I have to thank the people that were involved. I have to thank my family, my girlfriend, my friends, the coaching staff here for shaping me into the man I am today. This is really the first step. It's just another book opening, it's going to be fun."
Streich said following the draft online was an uncertain process. He expected to be in the fifth to eighth round area with his selection but knew things could change.
"You're sitting there, there's a whole lot of uncertainty. You really have no idea what's going to happen," Streich said. "I knew I was in that fifth through eighth round range going in but that's about all I knew. You can't really look into that too much because anything could happen. People can fall, people can rise."
That uncertainty led to tension as he watched the draft with friends at Ohio University where Streich is finishing up finals.
"Me and my friends and my girlfriend were at my house at school. The tension in the room, there was a lot of variance in the tension in the room from pick to pick. I could tell people were getting nervous. I think they were more nervous than I was. It was nice having them here. I wish my family, my brothers, my mom and dad had been here but that's OK, I talked to them and they're obviously very proud. I'd like to thank them for all they've done."
The uncertainty came to fruition as Streich was picked by a team he didn't expect to select him.
"It's really a surprise that the Athletics were a team that got me," Streich said. "That was one of the few teams that I didn't know had an interest. It's weird how the whole process unfolded. I got calls from the Angels, the Nationals, the Pirates during the draft and they were going to try and pick me. The Athletics swooped in and took me. I hadn't had much contact with them before the draft.
"I was actually on the phone with an Angels scout at the time my name called and I had to get off the phone real quick so I could answer the phone from the Athletics to let them know I'm here," Streich said.
Streich is focusing on finishing school this week before meeting with the Athletics next week. Oakland's class-AAA affiliate is the Sacramento River Cats of the Pacific Coast League. The class-AA affiliate is the Midland RockHounds of the Texas League. The high-A affiliate is the Stockton Ports of the California League and the class-A affiliate is the Burlington Bees of the Midwest League.
The short-season class-A affiliate is the Vermont Lake Monsters of the New York-Penn League.
Pitching will be Streich's focus as MLB.com notes a mid-90s fastball and a "power slider." This season, Streich finished with a 4-7 record in 12 starts with three complete games and a 4.42 ERA. He threw 75 1-3 innings with 36 walks and 62 strikeouts. While Streich posted a .315 average in 16 games for Ohio, injuries during the season curtailed the hitting aspect.
"I've come to terms with my hitting career probably being over at this point," Streich said. "I have to focus on pitching at this point. I'll be able to focus all of my attention on pitching so I should be able to improve to reach my potential."
Streich had a bit of an idea of what draft day would be like as he referenced his brother Tobias being drafted by the Minnesota Twins in the fifth round (162nd pick) in 2009.
"I had a little bit of an idea of what it was like from what my brother went through a few years back," Streich said. "Back then, it wasn't me personally going through it. There's really no way to prepare for it, it's something that happens."