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Baron grads Ball, Montes sign Major League Baseball contracts Phillip Brents | Fri, Jun 21 2013 11:30 AM

A pair of Bonita Vista High School graduates has signed Major League Baseball contracts after being selected in the recent MLB first-year player draft.

Matthew Ball, a 2013 BVHS grad, was drafted in the 11th round by the Chicago White Sox and signed a pro contract on June 13. He departed the West Coast on Monday to report to the White Sox’s Appalachian League (Rookie Ball) affiliate in Bristol, Va.

Hector Montes, a sophomore at Southwestern College and 2010 Baron alumnus, signed last weekend with the Tampa Rays and reported to the team’s Class-A-Advanced affiliate in Port Charlotte, Fla.

Montes was originally drafted by Tampa in the 47th round of the 2010 MLB Amateur Draft out of BVHS and in the 33rd round of the 2013 MLB Amateur Draft out of SWC.

“Both players are excited about their opportunities,” BVHS coach Vincent Gervais said.

Up and coming
The 333rd pick overall, the 6-foot-5, 195-pound right-handed Ball had originally committed to attend Long Beach State. But blessed with a fastball that has topped out at 92 mph, Ball decided his immediate future was in the professional ranks.

Upon being drafted by the White Sox on June 8, Ball called it the “best day of my entire life” in a post on his Twitter account (@MattBall_ChiSox).

Ball earned honors as the 2013 Mesa League Pitcher of the Year while ranking among the San Diego Section leaders with 119 strikeouts and a 0.86 earned run average. He won seven of his 11 starts on the season. He threw seven complete games, two shutouts, and did not allow a home run. Batters recorded a measly .166 hitting average against him.

He was the fourth high school player tabbed by the White Sox in the first-year draft.

The Bristol White Sox were scheduled to open their season Thursday with a game at the Elizabethton Twins. The team’s Appalachian League season ends Aug. 30.

It’s evident from postings on his Twitter account that Ball will miss California. “I’m so spoiled with Lolita’s,” he posted after leaving Chula Vista. “The Mexican food everywhere else just isn’t the same.”

Montes hit .339 in 29 games for the 24-16 Jaguars this spring, finishing with 18 RBI, five doubles and four home runs. He also scored 13 runs.

Montes’ hitting average ranked second on the team.

SWC finished 15-11 in Pacific Coast Athletic Conference play, finishing third behind Palomar (19-6) and San Diego Mesa (16-9).

Montes also has been active on his Twitter account (@hmontes11) after signing with the Rays. “Time for a new beginning,” he posted after being drafted.

After signing a contract, he posted, “Insane how I’m one step closer to my childhood dream.”

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