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Warhawk signs deal


© St. Petersburg Times,
published July 14, 2001

Bill Killalea was listening to the sixth round of the baseball draft over the Internet when he heard St. Louis draft someone named John from Seminole High School.

"The guy from the Cardinals just butchered the name. Then they read it back and spelled it, and we realized it was John," Killalea said.

His son, John Killalea (KILL-uh-lay), Seminole's star left-handed pitcher, was the third of six Warhawks drafted June 5 and 6. Friday, he became the first to sign. "We just put him on the plane to Johnson City (Tenn.). He's going to sign when he gets there and get on with it," Bill Killalea said. "I said, "Are you ready for this?' And he said, "Yes, I am."'

The terms of the deal were undisclosed, but Bill Killalea said, "It was the numbers we were looking for and also included (paying for) college." Killalea, who had signed with Florida Atlantic, will begin his career in the Appalachian (Rookie) League with the Johnson City Cardinals.

Two other Warhawks are close to signing, shortstop Bryan Bass, the 31st overall pick by Baltimore, and first baseman Casey Kotchman, the 13th overall pick by the Angels.

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