By CHUCK LANDIS – email@example.com
Starting the opening game and receiving all-state first team honors were some of the memories Tyler Fairchild took away from the North/South All-Star series this past weekend.
The Oak Hill pitching standout participated in the 42nd annual series in Whiting and started for the North in the first of the three-game series. Fairchild gave up one unearned run and allowed three hits and two walks over two innings as the North eventually dropped a 7-6 decision to the South.
“It was very special coming after the awards (presentation) and the coaches speaking,” Fairchild said Tuesday evening. “I was very excited (to start) and wasn’t nervous.
“I like to pitch against people who are better than me. I think it’s more fun,” he added.
The Indiana High School Baseball Coaches Association which stages the series also announced its all-state team and player of the year. Fairchild was up for the top player honor but lost out to Terre Haute North’s T.J. Collett, who was selected in the 40th round of the Major League Baseball draft by the Minnesota Twins.
“I was hoping (to win it),” Fairchild said. “I don’t know why I couldn’t have, but (Collett) had a great four years.”
Fairchild was named to the IHSBCA Class 2A All-State first team, the first Golden Eagles player to receive the honor since Ryan Spaulding in 2012. He was 9-0 with a zero earned-run average over 60 innings and also batted .405 with five home runs and 27 RBIs this past season.
In Sunday’s final game, Fairchild batted and had a base hit. The South swept the North in the series, 3-0.
Leading up to the all-star series, Fairchild had been named coaches’ District IV player of the year and Chronicle-Tribune Player of the Year. He helped Oak Hill finish 23-6 with Grant Four Invitational and Central Indiana Conference championships and a sectional runner-up finish.
Fairchild said he will leave in early August for the University of South Carolina-Aiken and begin his freshman season on the baseball team.
“I thought he did a really good job,” Oak Hill coach Shane Edwards said. “The South swept the three games and scored some serious runs, but Tyler held them down when he pitched and really held his own against some of the top talent in Indiana.”