PLYMOUTH, N.H. - For the first time in history, a former Plymouth State University baseball player has made a Major League Baseball roster.
Former Panther catcher Matt Tupman (Concord, N.H.), who played his freshman season at Plymouth State in 2000 before transferring to the University of Massachusetts Lowell, made the 2008 opening day roster for the Kansas City Royals.
"It's not only my first Opening Day, it's my first day," said Tupman in a story on the Royals official website. "I'm excited, my family's excited and it's what I've worked for my whole life. I've given up a lot and I don't know what my career is going to entail, but you've got to have a first day sometime."
An outstanding defensive catcher, the left-handed hitting Tupman led the Panthers with a .414 batting average in 2000 with 13 doubles and 35 runs scored in 33 games. He is just the second former Little East Conference player to make a Major League roster; former Eastern Connecticut State University pitcher Scott Chiasson played for the Chicago Cubs. Mike Porzio, who pitched for Western Connecticut State University before the Colonials joined the Little East, also pitched for the Colorado Rockies and Chicago White Sox.
Tupman played for the Concord Quarry Dogs in the New England Collegiate Baseball League in 2002 under current Panther head coach Dennis McManus, who was also Tupman's coach at Plymouth State.
"It's exciting," said McManus. "I've known him since Little League. He's a hard worker and very talented and he deserves it. It just goes to show that although it's a big jump from Division III to the majors, it's attainable. We're very proud of him."
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