Wednesday, September 1st, 2010
Luebke gets called up to Major Leagues
Marion Local grad to pitch Friday for Padres
By Gary R. Rasberry
There was only one thing that Cory Luebke was hoping for when he boarded a flight to Phoenix on Tuesday afternoon: that he didn't get a call saying "Never mind."
"I was just hoping they wouldn't change their mind before I got on the flight to meet with the team," said Luebke on Tuesday via telephone during a layover in Denver en route to Arizona. "Believe it or not, it has happened before."
Not only did the Padres not change their mind, they will put him to work right away.
Luebke, the Marion Local High School and Ohio State University baseball standout, will officially join the San Diego Padres today when Major League Baseball teams can expand their rosters to 40 players.
The southpaw will make his MLB debut on Friday night starting on the mound against the Colorado Rockies at PETCO Park starting at 10:10 p.m. Ohio time. Luebke confirmed that he was told by Padres manager Bud Black about his start when he got to Phoenix.
Luebke's 2010 season, which got a late start due to a oblique pull during spring training, has been dominating. Between Double-A San Antonio and Triple-A Portland, Luebke has compiled a 10-1 record with an earned run average of 2.68. In 114 innings, Luebke has struck out 88 and walked just 29, posting a WHIP (walks and hits per innings pitched) of 0.98. In his final three starts with the Beavers, Luebke has allowed just one run and 11 hits in 20 innings, striking out 14 and walking four.
Luebke got the news Sunday night when he got a call into the office of Portland Beavers manager Terry Kennedy.
"I wasn't really sure what was going on," said Luebke. "(Kennedy) called me in and let me know I wasn't going to start the next day. Then he said "You want to know why you're not starting?' and I was like 'sure'. He said (the Padres) were going to call me up in the next couple of days and wanted my arm to be fresh.
"I don't think it's hit me yet. I think every year I'm trying to take a step at a time. I can't say I reached my goal, because I want to get up here and not stay for a cup of coffee. It's a lot of work. I'm going to keep doing what I'm doing, keep learning and try to get better everyday. Hopefully it works out."
Making the call to his parents about his promotion was something Luebke was happy to make.
"My mom and dad know more than anybody what you have to go through to get to this point," said Luebke. "All the travel and the work. We only play for half the year, but there's a lot going on that people don't realize. ... I think they were happy for me and looking forward to me getting a chance."