To the Show! Eric Orze Gets Called Up By the New York Mets - University of New Orleans Athletics (2024)

NEW YORK – The latest New Orleans Privateer baseball alum has made it to the show. Eric Orze has been called up to the New York Mets on Saturday for the first time in his professional career, and in doing so, becomes the first New Orleans Privateer to appear in the big leagues since 2017.

Orze, who was drafted by the New York Mets in the fifth round of the 2020 MLB Draft, has pitched in 25 games for the Mets' Triple-A affiliate in Syracuse. This season, he is 3-0 with two saves and has a 3.76 ERA. Orze has been striking out batters at a high rate as well. He has 56 strikeouts over 38.1 innings.

RHP Ty Adco*ck was optioned to Triple-A Syracuse following last night's game.

RHP Eric Orze has been selected from Triple-A Syracuse.

— New York Mets (@Mets) July 6, 2024

The Illinois native was with the Privateers from 2018-2020. After being limited to just 16.2 innings for the season, Orze was diagnosed with testicular cancer. Orze fought through and being declared cancer free after two surgeries. He had to clear another significant hurdle though when it was discovered he had skin cancer. After a third surgery, Orze began his long, arduous journey back to the mound.

The wait was 656 days until Orze got back on the mound in 2020. He quickly got inserted into the weekend rotation and had a 12-strikeout performance over seven innings against Nicholls. Then the season shut down because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Still, through the same hard work and determination that got him back to the mound, Orze used that same mindset to put himself in position to hear his name called on Draft Day in 2020. He became the fourth Privateer to be selected in the MLB Draft since Blake Dean took the head coaching job in 2016.

"Eric has overcome so much adversity in his baseball career," said Head Coach Blake Dean. "The amount of time, effort and dedication he has put in is unmatched. We have waited for this opportunity for him for a long time and couldn't be more excited to know we were a stop along the way to the top. We wish him nothing but the best and can't wait to see how far this ride takes him."

The beginning of his career saw a rapid ascent. Orze went through three levels of the Mets' minor league system. He pitched 13 games in High-A Brooklyn before being called up to Double-A Binghamton. He ended the year in Syracuse and across all levels, had a 3.26 ERA in 49.2 innings with 67 strikeouts.

Orze becomes the first Privateer since Johnny Giavotella to appear in a Major League game. When he steps on the mound in New York, Orze will also become the 14th Privateer to appear in a Major League game.

He also joins the Mets during a playoff push. After being as many as 11 games under .500, the Mets are now firmly in Wild Card contention.

"It's tremendous for a number of reasons," said Ron Maestri, who coached seven of the previous 13 Privateers to make the big leagues in his tenure from 1972-1985. "Eric is an example of perseverance going through cancer and sticking with it through everything. To get to the big leagues is incredible and it shows you his determination and he's such a personable and appreciative young man."

The Mets are currently in Pittsburgh for a four-game series that will extend through Monday before they return to Citi Field for their last homestand before the All-Star break. Orze threw a scoreless inning on Friday night with Syracuse prior to getting the call.

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To the Show! Eric Orze Gets Called Up By the New York Mets - University of New Orleans Athletics (2024)
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