When New Castle baseball coach Brad King learned senior pitcher/outfielder Trey Ball had been named the Gatorade Indiana Baseball Player of the Year on Tuesday, he quickly went on the move. He learned that some materials were coming to honor Ball, so he went to the school’s athletic office to see if Ball’s hardware had arrived.
It hadn’t, so King then made a move toward the senior recognition rehearsal at the school, hoping to find Ball. The coach was eager to be the first to congratulate his staff ace. He found Ball and told him, and thought Ball seemed genuinely surprised to receive the honor.
“It’s a great honor, I’m speechless about it,” Ball said later Tuesday. “It’s nothing I expected at the beginning of the year, but it’s a great honor.”
While King was eager to share the news with Ball, he wasn’t surprised Ball had been selected. He attributes Ball’s surprise to his humble nature.
“First, he was a little shocked, which just blows me away,” King said. “Because there’s no one else in the state of Indiana for baseball that could have won it. There just isn’t. For him to be shocked, that just shows the kind of kid he is.”
Ball is a University of Texas signee who is also projected as a potential first-round pick in the MLB Draft on June 6. On the mound, he finished his season with a 0.76 ERA and 93 strikeouts. He averaged 14.2 strikeouts per seven innings pitched.
He was also one of the Trojans’ top hitters, and connected for his 10th home run of the season in his team’s sectional loss to Connersville on Monday. It was a solo home run, and he drove in his 29th run of the season on the play. He entered Monday’s game with a .329 batting average and a .504 on-base percentage.
As Ball awaits his potential selection in the draft on June 6, he is also busy with various commitments as he prepares to graduate from New Castle on Sunday, four days before Major League Baseball teams will make their first selections.
“It’s a whirlwind next two weeks,” he said. “It’s a fun two weeks, that’s for sure.”