CINCINNATI -- A few weeks before he was taken as the sixth-round pick by the Reds on Friday in the 2016 MLB Draft, pitcher Tyler Mondile already had the experience of pitching in a primetime setting. He also saw how baseball can be utilized to benefit others.A senior at Gloucester
CINCINNATI -- A few weeks before he was taken as the sixth-round pick by the Reds on Friday in the 2016 MLB Draft, pitcher Tyler Mondile already had the experience of pitching in a primetime setting. He also saw how baseball can be utilized to benefit others.
A senior at Gloucester Catholic High School in New Jersey, the 18-year-old Mondile was one of his state's top pitchers. So was Jason Groome, a lefty from Barnegat High School, who just happened to be listed as the 2016 MLB Draft's No. 1 prospect, according to MLBPipeline.com. A game that featured the schools' aces was set up on May 16, with all the proceeds going to charity.
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The game drew around 6,000 fans.
"Coming back out for pregame and seeing thousands of fans while I was getting loose, it was the first time I've gotten loose in the outfield and I had people taking pictures of me," Mondile told MLB.com. "That was kind of different for me but cool at the same time."
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Mondile topped Groome for a 1-0 victory by working a seven-inning complete-game shutout with three hits and 10 strikeouts. Groome was taken 12th overall by the Red Sox.
"I went into that game knowing there would be a good amount of scouts there and to showcase what I have," Mondile said. "I went out and did the best I could. [Groome] did the same thing and threw very well. … I said in an interview two weeks before that it would be a 1-0 game -- either me or him would win -- and it came up 1-0. It was awesome."
Mondile had his portion of charitable proceeds from the game benefit The Kari Jenkinson's Fund. Jenkinson is a sophomore from a nearby school who is battling brain cancer. Mondile was put in touch with her situation because he knew her grandfather.
"I sponsored her and got to meet her the day before. It was a really good cause to help her," Mondile said. "To see the looks on her family's faces and for them thank me as much as they did, and the look on her face when I gave her the game ball, it's something I will never forget either. I loved that I got to do that for her."
Mondile's father, Steve, was a former Reds scout who left the organization in the early 2000s to go into business for himself. He was also a former Minor Leaguer in the Orioles' organization. Reds senior director of amateur scouting Chris Buckley saw his son pitch recently.
"He has a fastball at 91-94 mph and the makings of a really solid curveball," Buckley said. "He's an aggressive kid. We like to get those pitchers sometimes from those cold weather states. They haven't quite pitched as much. A lot of times you think there's still more to go there."
Mondile has a commitment to play at Florida State, but he seemed poised to join the Reds.
"I think I'm set on pro baseball, to be honest with you," he said. "Hearing my name being called is an experience I will never forget."
Mark Sheldon has covered the Reds for MLB.com since 2006, and previously covered the Twins from 2001-05. Read his blog, Mark My Word, follow him on Twitter @m_sheldon and Facebook and listen to his podcast.