UC San Diego pitcher Tony York signed a free agent contract with the Chicago Cubs Thursday. The senior right-hander recently completed his collegiate career, serving as UCSD's primary closer in 2012.
"This is a dream come true," said York, a native of Escondido in North San Diego County. "It's everything I've worked for and looked forward to.
Over 24 appearances in 2012, York compiled a 2-1 record with a stellar 2.10 ERA. He recorded 10 saves, the second most in a single season at UCSD. York's save total was the second highest of any California Collegiate Athletic Association (CCAA) hurler and ranked 22nd in the country. He surrendered no runs over his first 14 trips to the mound and held opponents scoreless in 19 outings, striking out 24 batters in 30.0 innings of work.
For his performances, York was a consensus All-West Region pick, earning the distinction from the American Baseball Coaches Association (ABCA), Daktronics and the National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association (NCBWA). He was also named All-CCAA First Team.
"This past season, I stayed healthy and had my best stuff," said York. "I was able to come in during pressure situations and consistently handle them."
York came to UCSD for the 2011 season after playing two years at Arizona Western College in Yuma, Ariz. His first year as a Triton, he was 2-0 with a 4.91 ERA in 19 appearances (18.1 innings).
"It's going to be difficult at the next level, but I think I'm prepared for it," said York. "I want to thank both coaching staffs I've had here (at UCSD), my teammates that have stuck with me and my mom and dad. I've learned so much from so many people.
"We're extremely happy for Tony," said first-year UCSD head coach Eric Newman. "He's worked hard for this and is very deserving. We wish him the best and we're all looking forward to following his professional career."
York helped lead the Tritons to their fourth consecutive CCAA regular season and tournament titles as well as their sixth straight berth in the NCAA postseason.
York will report to Arizona for rookie ball next week.
The Tritons had another pitcher, Jeff Rauh, signed late Friday afternoon by the St. Louis Cardinals.
Rauh, who played four years at UCSD, made 12 starts in 2012, finishing with a 4-4 record and a 5.47 ERA. Through 70.0 innings, the Lake Forest native struck out 47 batters, the third most on the Triton staff. In his first start of the year on Feb. 3, he fanned a career-high 12 in six innings against Western Oregon. Rauh earned victories against CCAA opponents Cal State Dominguez Hills, Cal State L.A., Cal State Stanislaus and San Francisco State.
Rauh made 34 appearances for the Tritons during his career. He was part of a 2010 squad that advanced to the title game at the National Championships.