LOWELL — Just one year ago, Teddy Stankiewicz seemed destined for life in the Big Apple.
A second-round pick of the pitching-starved New York Mets, Stankiewicz endured a summer of fruitless negotiations. He decided to gamble on himself and walk away from the organization in favor of a year of college and another shot at the draft.
A year later, Stankiewicz’s gamble has paid off. He’s beginning his professional career with the Lowell Spinners after being selected by the Boston Red Sox in the second round of the 2013 draft.
“It’s been a crazy ride,” said Stankiewicz. “It’s a real relief to have this worked out and finally be a member of a team. The Red Sox have been great so far. Fenway is awesome and Lowell has been great.”
The 6-foot-4, 215-pound righty emerged as an elite prospect during his senior season at Fort Worth (Texas) Christian, going 12-2 with a 1.35 ERA and 135 strikeouts in 93 1/3 innings pitched, all school records.
That success, combined with his fastball that reached the mid 90s and a nasty slider, made him an appealing prospect in the 2012 draft despite that he had committed to play at the University of Arkansas.
The Mets ended up selecting Stankiewicz in the second round, with the 75th pick overall. But negotiations quickly hit a snag as the Mets offered him just $612,360, according to Baseball America, well under the $860,000 that he was slotted to make at the spot he was drafted.
“I considered signing, but the Mets didn’t meet my expectations,” said Stankiewicz, who was the second highest pick not to sign. “It was tough. Most people expected me to sign, because the second round is very good. They were worried when they heard I didn’t. But most understood when I told them why I decided not to.”