Tuesday, 22 June 2021 17:52

Seagraves 'hoping to gain some exposure' while competing in BodyArmor State Games

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Rising sophomore Camron Seagraves delivers a pitch for the Raiders during a home game against Lumberton High School earlier this spring. Rising sophomore Camron Seagraves delivers a pitch for the Raiders during a home game against Lumberton High School earlier this spring. Kyle Pillar — Sports Editor.

 

ROCKINGHAM — Ever since he was younger and learning the game of baseball, Camron Seagraves always knew he wanted to pursue the sport at the college level.


The Richmond Senior High School rising sophomore pitcher and infielder took another step in that direction this month by earning a roster spot to play in the 2021 BodyArmor State Games.

He becomes the most recent Raider baseball player to make the summer showcase event, following former Richmond players Cameron Carraway (Wingate University) and Jake Ransom, who competed as rising seniors in 2018.

Formerly called the Powerade State Games, according to the organization’s website, this will be the 35th year the “premier high school baseball event” will be held in North Carolina.

The BodyArmor State Games, which features summer showcase tournaments in 28 sports at varying youth and adult levels, ranges from badminton to basketball, Esports to ice hockey, and includes lacrosse, soccer, softball, tennis and volleyball, among others.

For baseball, there are eight different regions set up across the state, and the top 20 players in each region are selected following a tryout period. 

Seagraves tried out for Region 4, which covers 11 counties, including Richmond, Scotland, Moore, Roberson, Lee, Columbus, Bladen and Cumberland counties.

Region 4 will be coached by Matthew Hunt of St. Pauls High School, and Seagraves attended tryouts on May 15 at Lee County High School. 

He found out last week that he was one of the 20 players selected for Region 4, and one of just 160 players from across North Carolina to play in the State Games. 

Seagraves was also the only member of the class of 2024 to make the Region 4 roster, and described the tryout like any other “traditional showcase tryout,” where players were evaluated on running, fielding, pitching and hitting.

“It definitely means a lot and it's a big accomplishment to be the only freshman to make the team,” Seagraves said. “But that also means there’s a lot of pressure to perform.”

Besides adding the BodyArmor State Games to his growing resume, Seagraves said one of the biggest perks will be having college and professional scouts in the stands. 

According to State Games’ website, “more than 80 college/professional scouts” attend the event each summer.

“I’m really hoping to gain some exposure with all of the college and professional scouts there,” Seagraves said. “I really want to play baseball in college, so this is a great way to help make that happen.”

While the Region 4 team hasn’t met or practiced together yet, Seagraves anticipates his primary role will be to pitch and hit for Coach Hunt. He said there’s also the possibility to play some innings in the infield and the outfield.

“My top goal is to pitch well and impress, and try to get my name out there,” Seagraves explained. “These games will give me a chance to face better competition against older players and play on their level.

“I want to continue to work on hitting the strike zone and tighten up my command on my pitches,” he added. “And to be as efficient as I can against better hitters.”

This past spring, Seagraves was the lone freshman to make the Richmond varsity team and served in its starting rotation. He made nine appearances and threw 18.0 innings, while holding opposing batters to a .145 average at the plate.

Seagraves gave up just 10 hits, allowed 14 runs (seven earned) and struck out 23 batters, while recording a 2.72 earned run average, second lowest on the team behind junior teammate Will Dawkins (2.44 ERA).

Boasting a deep repertoire of pitches, Seagraves attacks the strike zone with a two and four-seam fastball, a curveball and a 12-6 curveball, while mixing in a changeup.

At the plate for Richmond, Seagraves batted .250 in 14 games and collected eight hits. He added one double, drove in three RBIs and scored seven runs.

“Being the youngest guy on the Raiders this past spring, playing against mostly juniors and seniors, that really helped me,” Seagraves said. “Playing on varsity taught me to stop worrying about my stats as much and just play the game and have fun.”

Seagraves noted that with limited practice time ahead of the BodyArmor State Games, he’s unsure of what to expect come tournament time. He said there is a lot of talent on the team, so he hopes that translates into some wins.

On June 28, the Region 4 team will participate in a 30-minute workout at the Historic Durham Athletic Park. The following three days, June 29, 30 and July 1, will see the team play one tournament game a day at Boshamer Stadium on the campus of UNC Chapel Hill.

Friday, July 2, will be the tournament’s championship day, also at Boshamer Stadium. Depending on Region 4’s success, the team could play in the gold or bronze medal game.

“I’m really looking forward to bonding with the different kids and making new friends,” Seagraves closed. “And I can’t wait to compete against some of the best players in the state in front of so many college coaches and scouts."

Last modified on Tuesday, 22 June 2021 21:33
Kyle Pillar

Nine-time N.C. Press Association award-winning sports editor. Indiana University of Pennsylvania communications media and journalism alumni. English teacher, Ninth Grade Academy.

Submit local sports scores to: kpillar@richmondobserver.com

Twitter: ROSports_