By Mike Deak
SYRACUSE – It’s been a generation since Wawasee lauded a North-South All-Star in baseball. In 2021, Wawasee will have representation after infielder Kam Salazar was given the honor by the Indiana High School Baseball Coaches Association.
Salazar has been a nightmare for opposing pitchers this year, his .564 on-base percentage popping off the stat page for the senior leadoff hitter for the Warriors. Through the regular season, he is hitting .420 among his 37 hits, 16 of those for extra bases including eight doubles, seven triples and one homer. He also has 16 RBI and nine stolen bases and has a whopping 45 runs scored in just 88 at-bats.
As a pitcher, Salazar is 4-3 with a 3.95 ERA and 1.41 WHIP and has a 3:2 strikeout to walk ratio (33/22). In the field, Salazar has a .924 fielding percentage with just nine errors in nearly 110 chances playing largely up the middle in a busy Wawasee infield.
“I knew I was nominated for the All-Stars team, but I didn’t know I was going to get it,” said Salazar Monday at his college signing for Marian University, where baseball coach Brent Doty released the news about his All-Star honor. “It was really kind of relieving to know I got it, but it lets me know that I can compete with anybody. I just have to keep working and doing the things I’m doing. That should let me be pretty successful.”
Salazar becomes the first Wawasee player since 1997 to earn North-South status when Rod Holderman made the prestigious roster. Wawasee also had Chris Peterson play in the game in 1993.
For Doty, he wasn’t terribly surprised his tablesetter was recognized among the best.
“The term ‘baseball player’ is overused because it’s an easy term to give someone who looks the part,” Doty said. “He’s a true baseball player. He gets on base no matter how – walks, hit by pitch, he fights off good pitches, he’s happy getting on after an error. He can hit about as well as anyone we’ve had here. It’s a testament to the baseball player he is. He’s a great player that will trend really well to the next level.”
Additional to the North-South All-Star honor, Salazar was voted the District I Player of the Year, chosen by the IHSBCA, given to 16 players from around the state.
The North-South All-Star games will be played June 25-27 at the University of Evansville’s Charles Braun Stadium.