Camarena throws gem for Braves in semifinals

Tournaments : : Story
Jim Ecker        
Published: Monday, October 26, 2009

JUPITER, Fla. -- Danny Camarena pitched the final inning in relief Sunday night when the Braves Scout Team edged the White Sox Scout Team, 4-3, in the quarterfinals of the WWBA World Championship, but his work was just beginning.
 
Camarena returned Monday morning as the starting pitcher and turned in a brilliant performance as the Braves blanked the Diamond Devils, 3-0, in the semifinals at the Roger Dean Sports Complex, setting up an all-ABD matchup in the finals.
 
Camarena, a 6-foot-1, 185-pound junior from Bonita, Calif., tossed a two-hitter with 12 strikeouts and went the distance against the Diamond Devils, about 12 hours after pitching a 1-2-3 frame in the final inning to get the save in the quarterfinals Sunday night.
 
He claims he does not have a rubber arm.
 
"Actually, my older brother (Louie) got me on the treadmill last night," he said. "We ran for 20 minutes and threw a few Advils in, so that helped. A little adrenaline rush, too, this morning."
 
Camarena, 16, pitched for Team USA when it won the gold medal at an international tournament in Mexico in 2008, tossing eight innings against Arabu and getting the victory with eight strikeouts. He's considered one of the top pitchers in the Class of 2011, and showed why on Monday.
 
Camarena stayed consistently in the mid-80s with his fastball against the Diamond Devils and hit 88 a couple of times, but his main weapon was a sharp curveball that had the Devils swinging at air much of the time. He said his brother, Louie, taught him how to throw that curveball. Louie, 29, pitched in the Mexican League and obviously taught him well.
 
"My brother has been my pitching coach all the time since I was little," he said.
 
The Braves Scout Team belongs to the ABD baseball program in California. So do the Orange County Boxers, and they were headed for an all-ABD championship game at Roger Dean Stadium on Monday.
 
"That's what we wanted," said Camarena.
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