Northeast Times

Fishtown ball player heads to spring training

Fishtown­er Sean Murphy pitches for the Stock­ton Ports. PHOTO COUR­TESY OF MURPHY FAM­ILY

He’s put­ting Fishtown on the map.

“My dream is play­ing in the World Series with Fishtown on my back,” said Fishtown nat­ive and Minor League Base­ball pitch­er Sean Murphy, 24, as he pre­pared to re­turn to Phoenix, Ar­iz. this week for the new round of pitch­er’s spring train­ing mini-camp.

Murphy, now an ex­per­i­enced start­ing pitch­er, will be gear­ing up for his third sea­son in Minor League Base­ball, this year ex­pect­ing to join the Mid­land Rock­hounds, an AA-team in the Texas League.

It’s the nat­ur­al pro­gres­sion from Murphy, who was draf­ted by the Oak­land A’s out of Key­stone State Col­lege in 2010 in the 33rd round of the first-year play­er draft.

This Philly kid star­ted out pitch­ing for the Ari­zona Ath­let­ics, a team in the Oak­land A’s minor-league sys­tem. Since then, he’s played for the Stock­ton Ports in the Cali­for­nia League and the Bur­l­ing­ton Bees in Iowa for the Mid­w­est League.

At 6 feet, 6 inches  and 220 pounds, with a 93-m.p.h. fast­ball, in the 2012 sea­son he threw 157 in­nings. He also av­er­aged 6.2 in­nings per start. That kind of longev­ity gives a pitch­er con­trol of the tempo of a game, he said.

“It’s my com­pet­it­ive nature, just be­ing from Fishtown. I al­ways strived to be the best in whatever I did,” Murphy said.

Murphy, the young­est of a fam­ily of three, went to school at St. Lauren­ti­us and gradu­ated from the now closed North Cath­ol­ic High School in 2006.

Grow­ing up, he played base­ball at the Fishtown Ath­let­ic Club and at­ten­ded Phil­lies games with his dad, Ray­mond.

In one spe­cial game, Murphy had the chance to pitch three times against San Fran­cisco Gi­ants slug­ger Pablo San­dov­al. The res­ult of Murphy v.

San­dov­al was a vic­tory for Fishtown — one strikeout, one foul out, and one bloop hit.

Be­ing el­ev­ated to the ma­jor leagues as a pitch­er is all about be­ing “ready to go against Ma­jor League hit­ters,” Murphy said. He said he is ready to play at that level  - and the ul­ti­mate dream would be play­ing for the Phil­lies.

But un­til that hap­pens, he will keep prac­ti­cing and work­ing out, play­ing the game he loves, and stay­ing true to his home neigh­bor­hood.

“I feel like there’s tons of great ath­letes around here. It’s just a mat­ter of the will, the pas­sion. They can eas­ily do it if they just set their minds to it,” he said.

Re­port­er Sam Ne­w­house can be reached at 215-354-3124 or at sne­w­house@bsmphilly.com.

You can reach at snewhouse@bsmphilly.com.

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