NASHVILLE, Tenn. — Waking up Saturday morning, Louisville pitcher and Effingham alumnus Chad Green had a lot running through his mind. He was about to face the No. 2-ranked Commodores of Vanderbilt in an NCAA Super Regional on national TV, against a lineup that entered the game hitting over .300 from top-to-bottom. It was a daunting task on the road, to try and pull out a victory in Game 1 of a best-of-three duel. The winner would be headed to the College World Series in Omaha, Neb.
The last thing he was worried about—preparing to take the hill in enemy territory—was the final day of the MLB amateur draft.
“I wasn’t focused on the draft at all really,” Green said. “I was more focused on what Vanderbilt was going to do. My focus was on the game.”
The much-anticipated matchup didn’t begin until 4 p.m., which gave Green plenty of opportunities to scroll through the draftracker on his phone. When he saw his name had been selected in the 11th round—336th overall to the Detroit Tigers—it garnered hardly more than a passing glance. There were more pressing issues at hand.
“I was checking my phone every twenty minutes or so,” he said. “I just saw a text message, and I put it back in my bag.”
Green kept his team right in the thick of things with his performance, allowing two earned runs with six hits spread over five innings. He left the game in a 2-2 tie, but the Cardinals pulled away late with three runs to stun the Commodores 5-3.
“I threw more changeups than I normally do,” Green said of his outing. “I didn’t have the breaking ball, I basically used two pitches the whole time. With all the versatility on that team, I tried to get ahead with the fastball, then make them get themselves out.”