(AZUSA, Calif.) – Azusa Pacific All-GSAC second baseman Eric Ordorica was selected today by the Florida Marlins in the 25th round of the 2002 Major League Baseball Amateur Draft.
Additionally, just prior to the draft, fellow All-GSAC pitcher Nick Padilla signed a minor league contract with the Atlanta Braves.
Ordorica, who is a natural third baseman that was forced to move to second base this year due to injuries, was the lone second baseman selected by the Marlins. He will report to the Marlins' Rookie (A) League team Jamestown Jammers of the New York-Penn League next week and could immediately see time at shortstop and third base.
"This is very exciting for me," said Ordorica. "I had an idea that this could happen, but I didn't want to get too anxious, because I didn't want it to be a let down if it didn't happen. But this is definitely a dream come true for me."
Ordorica finished his 2002 All-GSAC campaign hitting .364 (59-for-162) with a team-highs in hits (59), runs (41), doubles (18), home runs (18) and RBIs (47). Ordorica, who also received NAIA All-American honorable mention, was twice named GSAC Player of the Week (March 25 and April 1) when he went 5-for-12 (.417) at the British Columbia Tournament and then followed that up with a 6-for-8, 9 RBI performance the next week.
In the 2 day process, 1,482 players were selected in 50 rounds of the 2002 MLB Draft in New York. Ordorica (selection #743 overall) was one of 3 GSAC players to be selected, joining fellow All-GSAC selections Chad Chop of Vanguard (Montreal Expos - 6th round - #167 overall) and Matt Mamula of Point Loma (New York Yankees - 12th round - #366 overall).
Meanwhile, Padilla inked his minor league contract just prior to the draft. He will join the likes of 2002 NAIA Player of the Year Paul Bush of Georgia Southwestern State in the Atlanta Braves' organization. Bush was selected by the Braves in the 24th round with the 725th pick overall.
Padilla finished 7-2 with a 3.14 ERA, striking out 48 in 80.1 innings of work. Padilla was also named GSAC and NAIA Region II Player of the week with he fired a complete-game, 1-hit shutout of British Columbia. In 12 of his 15 starts this year, Padilla was nearly untouchable, allowing no more than 4 hits, and in 11 of them, he allowed 3 earned runs or less. After starting the season at 0-2, Padilla reeled off 7 straight victories.
Azusa Pacific finished the 2002 season at 28-17 overall, 21-7 in the GSAC, winning its GSAC-record eighth conference title and first since 1996.