If Josh Itzoe could fulfill his athletic dream, he would have a spot in the Orioles' infield. When Baltimore selected him in the 40th round of the amateur draft last month, Itzoe knew his hope was closer to being realized.
Yesterday the Calvert Hall standout was a star on the Orioles' infield, going 3-for-3 with a walk and helping the North team to a 12-5 victory in the Crown All-Star Game at Camden Yards.
Because of family connections -- his father, Phil, has been the Orioles traveling secretary for 30 years -- Itzoe has been around major-league players his entire life. For the past few years, he has caught fly balls during Orioles batting practice. But yesterday he was on the field as a player.
"It was definitely an honor just making this team," he said. "For me to go out here and help the team this way means a lot to me."
Itzoe, 18, is completing plans to attend Wake Forest, where he thinks he will compete for the second baseman's position.
Yesterday, he was put into the leadoff spot and opened the game with an infield single that bounced off South pitcher Jason Smithberger (Watkins Mill). Itzoe stole second and scored when Jeff Berman of Dulaney hit a liner to right that was misplayed into a double.
The North club broke open a close game in the third with seven runs.
Itzoe walked and came around on Jason Frushour's (Frederick) two-run single to right. Randy Musgrove (Lansdowne) had two RBI, and Larry Marino (Calvert Hall), Rodney Petitt (Woodlawn) and Ron Green (Patterson) also delivered run-scoring hits in the inning.
Itzoe was one of three members of Maryland Scholastic Association A Conference champion Calvert Hall who helped lead the North club.
"He's an outstanding player who was fortunate to be in an outstanding program," said North coach Roger Wrenn of Patterson.
The South's Mike Cozzone (Arundel) crushed a pitch over the left-field wall for the only home run of the game in the bottom of the sixth inning, bringing the South to within 12-5.
North 207 012 -- 12 11 3
South 031 001 -- .5 .5 4