TORONTO- Don Paulencu went to work like any other normal day on June 7th, except this wasn’t just any other day for the Partner at Deloitte Canada in Edmonton - this was the day his son Adam would be drafted by a major league club.
“Someone at work had the draft tracker on their computer and then they walked into my office and shook my hand,” said the Baseball Alberta President while taking a break at this past weekend’s Baseball Canada AGM in Toronto. “Then the phone rang and it was my wife, Rosemary, who was also following on-line, and I was able to hear his name announced while on the phone.”
“I was happy that he had achieved his goal,” he said of the emotion he felt when he found out the news.
A short while later, Mr. Paulencu spoke to a ‘pumped-up’ Adam Paulencu on the phone after the San Francisco Giants took him in the 13th round, 417th overall out of the Vancouver Island Baseball Institute.
According to Mr. Paulencu, his son wasn’t necessarily destined for a future in baseball until he caught the attention of scouts at the 2009 Canada Summer Games as a member of Team Alberta where he was awarded the win in a 2-0 shutout over Team Ontario.
“Most people would not have predicted where he has gotten today,” explained Mr. Paulencu about Adam’s baseball career. “He is by far a late bloomer.”
Like most kids, Adam began playing soccer, hockey and baseball as a youngster in Sherwood Park, Alberta. In his first year at the Mosquito level, Adam showed early that he had a strong throwing arm and it was suggested he try-out for a rep club.
“I didn’t even know what rep meant,” continued Mr. Paulencu with a chuckle. “Then I realized what rep was, the car was pointed in a certain direction on a Friday night and we’re gone for two days somewhere in Alberta.
Adam progressed through the various levels of minor baseball in Alberta, competing at the Double-A and Triple-A levels, which included winning a provincial championship at the Peewee level. After Midget Triple-A, 17 year-old Adam joined the Prairie Baseball Academy before enrolling at Malaspina College (now Vancouver Island University) in Nanaimo, BC to play for the Vancouver Island Baseball Institute.
His three-year career at VIBI has seen him grow into an imposing figure on the mound at 6’4” and armed with a fastball that has touched 94 miles-per-hour. According to dad, the scouts took notice and came flocking to see him pitch.
“Every game he threw this spring there were at least half a dozen scouts behind home plate.”
The Giants were one of many teams that showed interest in Adam and invited him to pitch at AT&T Park in San Francisco for a pre-draft workout. The bullpen session went well and the defending World Series champions came away impressed and proved that by selecting him on Day 2 of the draft.
Mere days after the draft, Adam signed with the Giants and will soon be assigned to one of their minor league affiliates.
The signing means a new journey for Adam and his family, it also means that Mr. Paulencu can point his car in yet another direction and enjoy the ride his son is sure to provide.