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Paul Sewald, 22, was selected by the Mets in the 10th round of the 2012 MLB Draft as a senior out of the University of San Diego. His 18-year-old brother John went in the 34th round to the Orioles. While the two are separated by just enough age that they have never played together in a sanctioned game, Paul and John could potentially face each other somewhere down the line, as they pursue their dreams of playing in the majors.
“It was a pretty cool couple of days for my family and me,” Sewald recalled, “My brother would have been drafted higher had it not been for his asking price to forgo playing at Arizona State. It would have been really cool to see my little brother drafted even higher than me. But, either way, it was great to see him drafted.”
Sewald said he was at home hanging around his computer on the day of the draft. “I was just waiting to hear my name,” said the right-handed pitcher, “I was pretty excited to go in the top 10 [rounds] – and [being selected] by the Mets was great. I was very happy about it.”
And the next day, John, an outfielder, was drafted out of high school by the Orioles – making the Sewalds the only set of brothers selected this past June. But, it is not too uncommon for brothers to be selected in the same draft. Trent and Shane Boras (sons of agent Scott Boras) were both drafted last year, and Bryce and Brian Harper in 2010.
Paul and John do have the distinction, however, of combined having led their alma mater, Bishop Gorman High School, to seven straight state titles.
“My sophomore year was the first time in 52 years of school history that we won the baseball state title,” Sewald said. “And then after that we’ve won six more in a row. So my brother or I have been on all seven.”
Being four years apart, Paul said he and John are very close. “We used to be really competitive growing up – normal kid stuff. He could never beat me at anything though, since I was older. But now, we don’t try to outdo each other, just show support. I couldn’t be more proud as an older brother.”
John will begin his college career at Arizona State University this fall, while Paul just completed his senior year at the University of San Diego. In his final season with the Toreros, Sewald posted an overall record of 8-4, while bolstering an ERA of 3.09. He recorded a team-leading and career-high 75 strikeouts, while only issuing 27 walks and holding opponents to a .234 batting average. In West Coast Conference action, Sewald posted a record of 6-2, and had an ERA of 3.51 en route to a first-team All-WCC distinction.
In 13 games for the Cyclones this season, Sewald has thrown 22.2 innings and compiled four saves. He did not give up a run in his first 12 appearances. After pitching on August 18th in Vermont against the Lake Monsters, Sewald has allowed a total of two earned runs off 16 hits with two walks and 26 strikeo
uts. Sewald throws a four-seam fastball, a two-seam fastball, a slider, and a changeup. “My goal is to throw all four of those pitches for strikes,” he said. “Valdez preaches for us to throw strikes. If you’re not walking guys, it makes things much easier. I want to be able to get swinging strikes out of the zone too. There are guys in the majors who can throw 100 mph, but if you throw what they’re looking for, it’s going to get smashed.”
Sewald continued, “I don’t have ‘blow-away’ velocity. I have to hit the corners and stuff. I’ve been doing a really good job of that so far. That’s what’s been leading to my success.”