Dan Reichert has been following the Spokane Indians on the World Wide Web.
Now he’s set to join them.
Reichert, Kansas City’s No. 1 selection in last month’s amateur draft, signed with the Royals Tuesday and will join Spokane’s Northwest League baseball team on Friday, when it begins a five-game homestand against Southern Oregon.
“(The Royals) have told me since Day One that I would be headed to Spokane,” the right-handed pitcher said from his home in Turlock, Calif., a 90-minute drive southeast of Oakland.
“I’ve been following (the Indians) over the Internet.”
In Spokane, Reichert will join the Royals’ top draft choice of 1995, Juan LeBron, and 1996, Dermal Brown. Both are outfielders.
Reichert, the seventh overall selection in the draft and the fourth pitcher chosen, will be introduced to the media at 4 p.m. today in Oakland, prior to the Royals-Athletics game. Royals pitching coach Bruce Kison will work out Reichert after the news conference.
Reichert, 13-4 for the University of Pacific this year, said he couldn’t release contract details until this afternoon’s press conference.
“I wish (negotiations) could have been done a little sooner,” Reichert said. “We had some disagreements in what we needed to get done.”
During negotiations, Reichert continued to work out with his longtime pitching coach in Sacramento. He said he’s ready to help out the Indians, who are in a heated North Division race with Boise.
“I’m hoping they’ll put me in the starting rotation,” Reichert said, “but that’s the coaches’ choice.”
Reichert, 6-foot-3 and 175 pounds, posted a 2.30 earned-run average with Pacific. He led all Division I pitchers with 169 strikeouts in 133 innings, including 22 in a game against Washington State.
Baseball America ranked Reichert’s breaking stuff as No. 3 among draft prospects. Reichert said the slider is his ‘out’ pitch.
Art Stewart, Kansas City’s special assistant to the general manager, will meet Reichert in Spokane.
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