Sept. 23, 2011
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Editor’s Note: The following first appeared in the University of Iowa’s Hawk Talk Daily, an e-newsletter that offers a daily look at the Iowa Hawkeyes, delivered free each morning to thousands of fans of the Hawkeyes worldwide.
IOWA CITY, Iowa — Junior pitcher Matt Dermody’s lifelong dream of playing professional baseball is on hold, but he’s excited to return to the University of Iowa baseball team for the 2012 season.
Dermody had an opportunity to begin his professional baseball career after being selected in the 29th round in the 2011 Major League Baseball Draft. After not coming to terms with the Colorado Rockies, he will return to Iowa City to continue refining his game, and help the Hawkeyes win.
“It was cool to get drafted,” said Dermody. “It lets me know that I can go to the next level and play, but right now I am happy here in Iowa City. I enjoy the college atmosphere, and am working toward my degree.
“I want to continue to improve and get more wins. I want to help this team advance to the Big Ten Tournament, win the tournament and qualify for NCAA Tournament.”
If Dermody is able to build on his breakout sophomore season, Iowa is primed for more success in the upcoming 2012 campaign.
“It was cool to get drafted. It lets me know that I can go to the next level and play, but right now I am happy here in Iowa City. I enjoy the college atmosphere, and am working toward my degree.”
UI junior Matt Dermody
The 6-foot-5 southpaw started 14 games as a sophomore, finishing with a 4-6 record and 4.15 ERA. He tossed 84.2 innings, the 13th highest single season total in school history, and had 75 strikeouts to pace the Big Ten and tie for the 10th most in single season history.
Dermody, who was named an Academic All-Big Ten honoree, allowed two runs or less in nine of his 14 outings. Twenty-five of his 75 strikeouts were looking, which ranked third best in the Big Ten.
Last summer, the Norwalk, Iowa, native continued to elevate his game while playing in the Cape Cod League for the Hyannis Harbor Hawks. He led his team to a West Division title with a league-best 29-15 record, going 1-1 with a 3.00 ERA in 24 innings of work.
“The Cape Cod League went well,” said Dermody. “I am working on another pitch to add to my repertoire — a slider. I mainly throw a fastball and a change-up and my off speed pitch is a curve ball. Once I get my slider going, that will be a good pitch for me.”
UI head coach Jack Dahm has seen the results of Dermody’s work in the Cape Cod League.
“Matt worked extremely hard this summer in the Cape Cod League to improve his off speed pitches and so far this fall he has been very impressive,” said Dahm. “He has all the qualities a coach looks for in a pitcher, from being an athletic 6-foot-5 lefty, to being extremely focused and one of the hardest working players in the program. Matt has a very bright future and has a chance to play this game for a very long time.”
Dermody is back with Iowa to grow as a baseball player and earn his college degree. Chances are, he’ll have another opportunity to one day fulfill his dream as a professional.
The Hawkeyes will host Nebraska-Omaha on Sunday afternoon at 1 p.m. at Duane Banks Field. Admission is free.