Orioles' top Draft pick makes pro debut

O's top Draft pick makes pro debut

CHICAGO -- Manager Dave Trembley hadn't yet received the report on Matt Hobgood when he checked his computer on Sunday morning. The night before, Baltimore's first-round Draft pick made his professional debut with the Rookie League Bluefield Orioles.

The Baltimore skipper expects to read it during Sunday's flight to New York. Whatever it says, the plan will be simple for a pitcher who won't turn 19 until Aug. 3.

"Probably just like every other guy, really -- just acclimate him to professional baseball," Trembley said of the next few months. "He's in the Appalachian Rookie League coming out of high school in Southern California -- just acclimate to the routine of professional baseball, which is an education in itself."

Hobgood, the fifth overall pick in the 2009 First-Year Player Draft, threw one inning for the short-season team in Bluefield's 10-8 win over Johnson City on Saturday. The 6-foot-4, 245-pound right-hander out of Norco High School in California -- who agreed to terms on June 27 -- allowed one run on two hits. He struck out a batter, threw a wild pitch and committed a fielding error.

Hobgood went 9-0 with an 0.38 ERA during his senior season and notched 84 strikeouts in 55 innings. His fastball has been clocked in the 89-92-mph range and he has a plus curveball. All that helped make him Gatorade's National Player of the Year.

Patrick Mooney is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.