By Laurel Wilder
Shawn Armstrong’s goal for the 2013 season is simple: To finish his climb through the Indians organization and make it to the majors.
For the 6-foot, 2-inch, 210 pound right-handed pitcher from Bridgeton, N.C., that goal does not seem far off.
The Indians drafted Armstrong in the 18th round of the 2011 First-Year Player Draft out of East Carolina University. Though he is relatively new to the Indians system, with 2012 being his first full season, Armstrong has risen through the minor ranks at an alarming speed.
Armstrong,22, started his 2012 season pitching for Low-A Lake County, but quickly moved up to pitch for High-A Carolina and ended his season playing for Double-A Akron. The only other player recently to move through the Tribe system at that speed is current Indians right-handed relief pitcher Cody Allen.
“I loved it,” Armstrong said of his rapid move through the organization. “Playing at every level, getting to meet all the different staff and players was a good experience for me, because it was a learning experience. I got to have three different pitching coaches’ perspectives of pitching…It kind of made my season just fly by. I looked up and it was September and we were playing for a championship in Trenton.”
By Mike Brandyberry
After a successful college career right-handed pitcher Shawn Armstrong still has many adjustments to make on his road to the big leagues. While the road seems to be progressing quickly, adjusting to professional baseball is taking time.
“I think the biggest thing to get used to is the long season,” Armstrong said. “Throwing every day, you don’t have those random days off when you don’t pick up a baseball and stuff like that. You never know when you are going to throw either.”
Armstrong was 18th round selection by the Indians in the 2011 MLB Amateur Draft. As a draft eligible sophomore, Armstrong signed right at the August 15 deadline and thus delayed the start of his professional career. He made up for his delayed start by pitching in both the Arizona and Dominican Instructional Leagues over the winter.