Sometimes life comes at you fast. It helps when you can throw it back even faster.
Just ask former Stony Brook University pitcher Daniel Zamora, who is having an electric 2018.
The 25-year-old reliever — who hurls a 90-plus MPH fastball — just had his dreams realized when he got “The Call” on Thursday evening.
“I was coming home from WalMart when I noticed my phone rang with a Florida number,” said the prospect left-handed pitcher. “It was my manager.”
Zamora quickly put aside the blankets he bought for his new Binghamton apartment to find his 7-month pregnant girlfriend, Courtney.
Then re-introduced himself as the newest member of the New York Mets.
“I didn’t want her to freak out,” he said. “I told her to sit down…then I told her, and she lost it.”
Earlier this year, Zamora was traded to the New York Mets’ organization, where he spent the season on the Double-A minor league affiliate, the Binghamton Rumble Ponies.
Zamora appeared in 40 games, collecting a 3.48 ERA with 69 strikeouts and two saves. His performance earned him a a spot on the mid-season Eastern League All-Star team.
The Mets officially promoted the La Puente, Calif. native on Friday, when the team placed right-handed pitcher Bobby Wahl (hamstring) on the 10-day disabled list.
That day, Zamora headed to Citizens Bank Park in Philadelphia, where he would see his first major league action.
In the crowd of nearly 40,000, he saw familiar faces; his parents found seats by the away team bullpen.
In the bottom of the sixth with two outs, Mets manager Mickey Callaway called on Zamora to close out the inning.
“I turned and smiled at my parents,” said Zamora. “The adrenaline and emotions were pumping.”
After starting off with two balls, Zamora tossed three strikes in the next four pitches to retire his first MLBer, Cesar Hernandez.
“It was a big sigh of relief,” said Zamora. “I was like ‘Hey, I got this. I can pitch here.'”
He stayed in the game for the next inning, where he recorded another strikeout and one walk.
On Sunday, Zamora got the call again against the Phillies, where he pitched one inning recording one strikeout and allowing only one hit.
Now, the Stony Brook alum is hoping to get the chance to show off his stuff in the stadium he frequently visited while in college. The San Francisco Giants visit the Mets for a 7:10 p.m. game at Citi Field on Monday, Aug. 20.
“I’m just trying to the enjoy the moment,” he said. “I have a great support system from Stony Brook and California, and they are coming to Monday’s game.”
Nothing has come easy for the lefty.
The California-born pitcher flew across the U.S., far away from family and friends, to play at SBU, where he started as a freshman. Yet in his sophomore year he torn his labrum forcing him to miss a year of baseball.
Since then, he rehabbed, continued pitching and was later picked by the Pittsburgh Pirates in the 40th round in 2015.
After bouncing around from different teams, Zamora is glad to see the fruit of his hard work.
“It was unreal, absolutely unreal,” he said of his MLB debut. “You step onto the field and you see everything you ever dreamed of seeing.” Embed from Getty Images