DAYTON — J.D. Orr got the call Tuesday every baseball player dreams of.
Orr’s call came from the Miami Marlins, who drafted the Mount Vernon graduate and Wright State baseball player in the 10th round of the Major League Baseball draft.
“It feels good. It’s been on my mind to play professional baseball since I can remember,” Orr said. “I guess all my hard work has paid off.”
Orr has been a four-year starter for the Wright State Raiders, hitting .330 his senior season with 10 doubles, two triples and a home run. His calling card, though, and one of the big reasons the Marlins drafted him, was his speed. Orr led the NCAA with a Wright State record of 60 stolen bases this spring.
“They made it a point that my speed was one of the big things that got me drafted,” Orr said. “I’ve put in a lot of hard work figuring out how, and now my instinct allows me to steal bases. I didn’t know how to steal when I was a freshman and sophomore. The big thing is figuring out the pitcher’s tendencies, what they do, to provides me with a chance.”
Orr was a first-team All-Horizon League outfielder this spring for the Raiders. He was second nationally with 83 runs scored.
In 2018, Orr was named second team All-Horizon League and in 2016, was named to the All-Freshman team.
“That was a big step playing college baseball. It was a great opportunity (at Wright State). We played all the big time schools. It really helped me get my play to the next level,” Orr said.
At Mount Vernon High School, Orr was named All-Ohio and All-Ohio Capital Conference in both baseball and football. He hit .548 his senior season for the Jackets, setting school records for hits, runs scored, average and on-base percentage.
His next step will be flying to Miami to meet with team officials and fill out the paperwork. He will then be assigned to a minor league team, most likely the Batavia (N.Y.) Muckdogs, a short-season Class A team in the New York-Pennsylvania League.