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Peñaloza: Seabold, Vetrovec come out winners

August 08, 2013|By David Carrillo Peñaloza
  • Connor Seabold, who will be a senior at Newport Harbor High, has committed to play at Cal State Fullerton.
Connor Seabold, who will be a senior at Newport Harbor… (DON LEACH, Daily…)

Connor Seabold says he can draw like his talented father, Kirk.

His dad works as a graphic designer. The young Seabold doesn't spend much time drawing these days.

He prefers to paint the outside corner of the plate and brush back batters.

Seabold can thank his father for allowing him to work on his craft as a pitcher at Newport Harbor High. He will get to on the next level as well, as the right-hander verbally committed to Cal State Fullerton's baseball program.

The college is also the one Kirk and Seabold's mom, Erin Brown, attended. His parents are two big reasons why he chose the Titans.

"I grew up a Cal State Fullerton fan because of them," Seabold said.

As a kid, Seabold said he dreamed of playing for the Titans, the four-time NCAA Division I champions and one of the top programs in the country.

"Honestly, though," Seabold said, "I didn't think I would ever be in the position I'm in right now."

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Moving back to Newport Beach helped Seabold's chances of Cal State Fullerton noticing him.

Work brought Kirk to Newport Beach a couple of years ago. The rest of his family joined him last summer from Colorado.

The move reunited Seabold with his childhood baseball friends, players like Shaun Vetrovec, before their junior season. The two hadn't seen much of each other since they were 11, when Seabold's family relocated to Colorado.

Unsure of what to expect five years later, Seabold came out to the Newport Harbor field in the summer. A nervous Seabold threw a bullpen session for Coach Patrick Murphy. The coach's reaction to Seabold's pitches settled down the then 16-year-old.

"Yeah, you're good for varsity," Seabold said Murphy told him.

Vetrovec, the returning ace on the Sailors' staff, always knew Seabold could throw from their days playing in youth leagues. Murphy found another 6-foot-2 ace in Seabold who can throw a fastball in the high 80s, a changeup and a breaking ball for strikes.

Seabold and Vetrovec turned in standout junior seasons on the mound for Newport Harbor. Seabold posted a 1.97 earned-run average and struck out 65 in 60 1/3 innings, earning second-team All-Sunset League accolades, and Vetrovec finished 5-4 with a 2.20 ERA, garnering first-team all-league honors.

This summer, Vetrovec and Seabold were rewarded for their efforts in the spring. They recently verbally committed to major programs, Vetrovec with UC Irvine.

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