Bergman has a 'pretty big day'
Baseball: Former Golden Knight drafted 470th overall in 24th round out of UC Irvine by Colorado Rockies in 2010 MLB Draft.
Christian Bergman was drafted by the Colorado Rockies on Tuesday. (Mark Dustin Daily Pilot)
It was quite a Tuesday that concluded a very memorable and significant four-day span in the life of the St. Francis High graduate.
And finally on Tuesday afternoon, the waiting ended along with the self-described "roller-coaster ride" as Bergman was drafted by the Colorado Rockies in the 24th round of the 2010 Major League Baseball First-Year Player Draft.
"It's really been a roller-coaster ride," said Bergman, who was the 470th selection in the draft, of the last four days. "It's been real exciting. I'm just really happy how it all turned out."
On Saturday, Bergman pitched UC Irvine to a victory over Kent State in the Los Angeles Regional, but a day later, the Anteaters lost to UCLA and were eliminated, their season and Bergman's college career coming to a conclusion.
"That was kind of a sad thing," said Bergman, who ended the season with a 9-3 record and a 3.73 earned-run average, highlight by a scoreless streak of 27 2/3 innings at the end of the season. "After that, it's like it's time to look forward to the future."
Which meant the draft — which began Monday, saw rounds two through 30 Tuesday and concludes with rounds 31 through 50 today — and taking final exams at UC Irvine.
Thus, Bergman graduated and was drafted on the same day, the latter allowing him to come a step closer to achieving one of his lifelong aspirations.
"Playing professional baseball was something I've always wanted to do," Bergman said.
Thus, the multiple-time All-American and All-Big West Conference selection said he likely would have signed had he been drafted after his junior season in 2009. But his name never came across mlb.com's draft tracker.
This time around, Bergman was told by his advisor that teams were looking at him as early as the sixth round and he would likely be taken between then and the "late-teens." So the 2010 draft became just as frustrating as the 2009 version.
Bergman had checked to no avail before taking a morning final and then checked again after his final and then once more before leaving to take a second final in the afternoon.
"By that point, I was too stressed out to think about it," Bergman said.
And after sitting himself in front of a computer for the entire draft last year, he vowed not to do it again this year.
"I told myself I wasn't going to do it this year, it's just too nerve-wracking," he said.
So Bergman never saw his name cross the computer screen.
Instead, he was on the phone with his dad, "ranting and raving" about the fortunes of the draft. Then, upon hanging up, he noticed a surge of voice mails and text messages.
"I figured that's gotta be something good," he said.
Indeed it was, as he received myriad congratulations on being drafted by the Rockies.
"I was just absolutely relieved," he said.
Next up for Bergman is what he believes will be a relatively quick period in which he'll sign a contract and likely make his way up to the Casper Ghosts in Casper, Wyo., to play for the Rockies' rookie affiliate.
Bergman was a 2006 St. Francis High graduate, as he was named that year's All-Area Baseball Player of the Year after leading the Golden Knights to the CIF Southern Section Division III final. He then moved on to become a fixture and standout in the Alaska League during the summers of his college career and over the last three seasons at UCI was a mainstay in the starting rotation.
His best season came as a sophomore in '08 when he tallied a 1.94 ERA and had a 5-2 record. His junior season saw him go 9-3 with a 3.50 ERA.
Though he expected to be taken sooner, at the end of the day it was a monumental one for Bergman.
"It's a pretty big day," he said of graduating and getting drafted. "I think it all worked out pretty well."