Pasco's Jeremy Bonderman and wife, Amber, live in the Tri-Cities during the off-season. But during the season, he's pitching for the Detroit Tigers and headed to the World Series.
Bonderman made baseball history when he became the first player ever to be selected after only his junior year of High School. That was June, 2001, when he was drafted by Oakland. As a junior at Pasco H.S., he went 3-1 with a 3.60 ERA and 54 strikeouts in just 35 innings.
Do you read the sports page and the scouting reports about yourself? "No, you know I, I really don't. I, the only thing I really take a peek at it every once in a while is my ERA. just because I like to keep it down. Every once in a while they try to give you an extra run that you didn't deserve. I'm not a stat freak, I'm just trying to make it to the next level and do whatever it takes."
The A's drafted Bonderman in 2001. According to the book, Moneyball, General Manager Billy Beane was so upset with the selection of Bonderman, he threw his chair through a wall. It didn't take long for them to do something about it. Bonderman was traded just one year later.
So it was some sweet justice for Bonderman to take on the team that let him go, and beat them in the American League Championship series to go to the World Series.
"He was a great talent when we had him,'' Beane told the Associated Press.
It didn't start that great in Detroit. He struggled through a miserable rookie season with a team that finished dead last. Along the way, he lost 19 games. In 2006, at the age of 23, that's all changed.
It's his fourth season with the Tigers and he racked up 202 strikeouts - almost one per inning - during his 34 starts. that's earned him an annual salary of $2.3 million dollars. His contract is up in 2007.