By Josh Bronson
Pilot staff writer
This past weekend, Brookings-Harbor High School senior Tyler Parke had a chance to play with and against some of the elite high school baseball players in the country at the Arizona Fall Classic held in Peoria, Ariz.
Parke, who was the Far West League MVP and a First Team All-State selection this past season, was part of Baseball Northwest's Oregon team, representing the best of the best of Oregon prep baseball players in the four-day classic.
On Saturday, Parke pitched against the Bayside Yankees, at team based out of New York.
"It was a crazy opportunity," Parke said. "It was cool because I got to play with guys who will be playing at the next level and even in the pros."
The Oregon team was one of 44 teams attending the classic, with each team comprised of the best high school seniors in the area.
There were also 250 college and professional scouts from all over the country watching the prep stars perform.
Parke, who is still undecided as far as colleges are concerned, said it would be a plus to have college paid for because of baseball.
"It would be a major bonus," Parke said. "To be able to get my education and have it paid for while getting to play baseball as well."
Parke's journey to Arizona started in July when he went to a Baseball Northwest tryout.
From the tryout, he was selected to play for one of the two Oregon teams which were divided into a state team (south of Salem) and a metro team (north of Salem) to play in the Baseball Northwest Championships.
Along with the two Oregon teams, there were four teams from Washington, a Montana/Idaho team, a Utah team and one from British Columbia that participated in the tournament.
Parke's Oregon state team took third place at the tournament, with Parke getting the game winning hit against the Washington Southeast team.
Parke also threw five hitless innings in one outing as well as another inning of relief in a separate game.
From the two Oregon teams that participated, Parke was selected to become one of the members of the team to represent Oregon at the Fall Classic.
"It's been a good experience for me, getting to meet and play with some of the best from Oregon," Parke said. "The coaches have also been great and I've been learning a lot."
Members of the community made this trip possible for Parke, donating money to help pay for his player's fee, hotel accommodations and airfare.
"I'd like to thank Becky and Skip Watwood of Century 21 Agate Realty, South Coast Lumber and Dan Lyons of K&S Precision Grinding for their donations," Parke said. "Also, everyone who contributed to the jar located in the Fox's Den."