A lengthy start for a Rochester High School pitcher has caught the national spotlight, including national television networks and Cy Young winning pitcher and Tampa Bay Rays ace David Price.
Rochester High senior Dylan Fosnacht threw 194 pitches as he took a shutout into the 15th inning during Tuesday’s 1A District IV first-round game against La Center in Rochester. The right-hander wound up with a no-decision as the Warriors won, 1-0, in the 17th inning on Josh Larson’s squeeze bunt.
Fosnacht struck out 17 while allowing seven hits and three walks, and was pulled in the 15th when he allowed two batters to reach base.
Price took notice of Fosnacht's performance on Twitter, telling Fosnacht "you're a beast ... but let's be a little smarter brotha!!" Price suggested his coach, Jerry Striegel, who also is the school’s athletic director, should be fired for letting the young pitcher risk injury by staying in the game so long.
Fosnacht responded by noting that he's not a major league prospect or even a regular pitcher. He's an infielder who pitches every now and then, and he's happy he gave his team a chance to win.
"I personally loved every minute of it and it's a great memory to have," he wrote on Twitter.
The debate also reached national TV networks, including ESPN and MLB Network.
Striegel, who has state titles at Rochester (2008) and Tenino (’86), told The Centralia Chronicle he checked in with his pitcher every inning to make sure he was OK.
The Washington Interscholastic Activities Association does not have a pitch count rule, but rather, imposes an innings rule. If a pitcher reaches four or more innings on the mound on the same day, he must have two calendar days off before another appearance.
Following Fosnacht's performance, Rochester later earned a state berth with a 5-3 victory over Elma. The Warriors face Woodland in Saturday’s district title game.