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Johnson taken by Rangers in draft

 

Last updated 7/15/2010 at Noon

Fallbrook pitcher Chase Johnson throws to a Cathedral City opponent during the Warriors' 8-3 loss Tuesday, March 17, 2009.

Chase Johnson was selected by the Texas Rangers in the 26th round of Major League Baseball’s amateur draft.

“I’m excited about getting drafted,” Johnson said. “It’s been my dream pretty much to be a professional baseball player since I was young, so it was a really good experience.”

Johnson, who graduated from Fallbrook High School in June, signed a letter of intent to play college baseball for Cal Poly San Luis Obispo last November. He has until August to decide whether to sign with the Rangers or enroll at Cal Poly. “It’s a win-win

situation,” he said.

“Very proud of him,” said Fallbrook coach Jesse Schuveiller. “I think it’s great for him and his family.”

Johnson began playing T-Ball with Fallbrook Youth Baseball at the age of five and spent nine years in Pony League baseball. He began playing travel ball at the age of 10 and spent the summer of 2009 with the San Diego Show.

At various points during the 2007 season he played for Fallbrook High School’s freshman, junior varsity, and varsity teams. As a sophomore in 2008, Johnson was named to the Avocado League’s second team. His 2008 highlights included pitching a no-hitter against El Camino which was part of a shutout streak of 26 consecutive innings. Johnson, who played the outfield when he wasn’t pitching, also hit a grand slam during that shutout

streak.

Johnson’s 2008 teammates included Clark Murphy, who was drafted by the Rangers that year. Local Rangers scout Steve Flores, who signed Murphy, has worked with Fallbrook High School’s coaches in the past. “There’s some good connections going on,” Johnson said. “It kind of helped.”

Although no Fallbrook High School seniors were drafted in 2009, the 2009 draft saw 2006 Fallbrook High School graduates Mike Leake and Erik Castro drafted out of college. “We’re just happy to keep the streak alive of having players drafted,” Schuveiller said. “It’s just great to keep the tradition alive.”

In August 2009 Johnson was one of two San Diego County players, and the only San Diego County pitcher, to earn a berth on a team for the Area Code Games in Long Beach. He was then invited to play in the Dodger Elite Tommy Lasorda Games at Dodger Stadium, where he pitched and played left field. In October 2009 he pitched in two games at the Arizona Senior Fall Classic baseball showcase.

Johnson was named to the Avocado League’s first team for the 2010 season. “It was a decent season,” he said. “I threw well.”

He fell short of his goal to reach the CIF finals as the Fallbrook teams of 2004 and 2006 did, but the Warriors’ 10-17 record was better than their 6-22 mark in 2009. “It was an improvement from last year,” Johnson said.

Johnson, a lifelong Fallbrook resident, attended Bonsall Elementary School and Sullivan Middle School before his four years at Fallbrook High School. He was one of four valedictorians in his Sullivan Middle School graduating class after compiling a perfect grade point average while in middle school.

Chase Johnson

Johnson entered his final semester with a cumulative 4.06 grade point average at Fallbrook High School. He scored a 2020 out of a possible 2400 on his Scholastic Aptitude Test. He was a member of the California Scholarship Federation and the Fallbrook High School chapter treasurer for 2009-10. His community service activities included beach cleanup with the Surfrider Foundation and participation in the Key Club.

“I think it’s just a tribute to his work ethic and the kind of kid he is,” Schuveiller said of Johnson being drafted.

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