Mike DeMark is still in uniform.
And, so is Matt DeSalvo.
That's important because as long as the two former Marietta College pitching standouts are, some Major League Baseball (MLB) club's scout just might take notice and sign them.
Fact is, the 28-year-old DeMark, who, since April, had been throwing for the York Revolution in the independent Atlantic League of Professional Baseball Clubs, was signed earlier this month by the Arizona Diamondbacks and sent to the Mobile Bay Bears in the Double-A Southern League.
As of last week, DeMark had made five appearances as a Bears reliever and was 0-0 with a 0.00 ERA and one save.
DeMark had been in the San Diego Padres minor league system until he was released by the parent team this past spring. During parts of the last two seasons, he'd even pitched at the Triple-A level, one rung below MLB.
So, needless to say, if DeMark performs well at Mobile, his dream of hurling someday in the majors is still very much alive.
So is DeSalvo's.
Of course, the 30-year-old DeSalvo's been there, done that with brief stints with the New York Yankees and Atlanta Braves. His MLB career stats, through the 2008 campaign, are 1-3 with a 7.89 ERA. His lone NY win was against the Seattle Mariners. Joe Torre was the manager then and a couple of DeSalvo's Bronx Bomber teammates were guys like Alex Rodriguez and Derek Jeter.
DeSalvo naturally would like to get back there, to the "show" as it's sometimes referred to, and do it again.
Currently, DeSalvo is in his second season of pitching for the York Revolution and doing quite well. During an outing against the Southern Marland Blue Crabs last week, the right-handed flame thrower fanned 10 in seven shutout innings before being lifted in the eighth.
DeMark and DeSalvo, or "de guys" from MC, teammates - again?
Well, for a brief time this spring at York - until DeMark got inked and promoted to Mobile - they were.
They also wore the Marietta College Pioneer pinstipes back in 2003 when DeMark was a frosh and DeSalvo a fifth-year senior, breaking and setting all kinds of NCAA Division III mound marks.
DeMark reportedly gives DeSalvo a lot of credit for his emergence as a pitcher. He actually started out as an infielder at MC.
As a college pitcher, DeMark blossomed into a bonafide ace.
In fact, in 2006, it was the Mike DeMark and Mike Eisenberg show at Marietta with the duo helping the Brian Brewer-coached Pioneers capture the school's fourth national championship. Eisenberg later pitched for a spell in the Cleveland Indians organization.
Oh, how time flies.
And, hopefully, 'de-future' bodes well on the hill for both DeMark and DeSalvo.
The Washington Wild Things are one of the teams in the independent Frontier League.
Ron Johnston is the Marietta Times sports editor, and can be reached at 376-5441 or at firstname.lastname@example.org