Former SEMO pitcher living the baseball dream

Updated: Apr. 12, 2018 at 2:37 PM CDT
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(KFVS) - A former SEMO pitcher is living his baseball dream making it Major League Baseball.

Joey Lucchesi played for Southeast Missouri just two years before his baseball career began.

He became the first SEMO baseball alum to start an MLB game on the mound when he was called up to pitch against the Brewers on March 30, 2018.

The 24-year-old sported a 1.54 ERA in four spring starts and was informed he would be making his big league debut only two days into MLB season.

Lucchesi allowed seven hits, three runs, walked none and struck out one in 4.2 innings taking the mound for the first time as a San Diego Padre.

He recorded his first career MLB strikeout against Ryan Braun in the top of the third inning.

Lucchesi is now 1-0 with a 1.72 ERA and 16 strikeouts in 15.2 innings through three starts this season.

He picked up his first MLB win when he recorded eight strikeouts in six innings against the Colorado Rockies on April 10.

"I went out there in the first inning and felt great. I made one bad pitch and recuperated, and was able to get the job done," said Lucchesi after his first win.

Lucchesi is set to make his next start against the San Francisco Giants on April 15.

A native of Newark, California, Lucchesi was selected by the Padres in the fourth round of the 2016 Major League Baseball Draft following two outstanding seasons at S

A two-time Ohio Valley Conference Pitcher of the Year and First-Team All-OVC pick, Lucchesi broke the school's single-season strikeout record with 149 Ks in 2016.

He finished his two years at SEMO with a 17-7 record, 2.62 ERA and career-record 242 strikeouts in 199 innings over 32 appearances and 28 starts.

After he left Cape Girardeau, Lucchesi began his professional career as a member of the Tri-City Dust Devils, where he pitched his way into a starting role with the short-season Class A club in 2016. He posted a 1.35 ERA and 53 strikeouts in 40 innings for Tri-City, and was named a Short-Season All-Star.

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