They called him “The Unicorn” at the University of Maryland and that came after four years at Gloucester Catholic in which his teams won four straight NJSIAA Non-Public A state championships.
Mike Shawaryn earned that nickname for his unusual and instant success at the collegiate level. His remarkable high school and college careers garnered the 6-3, 210-pound righthander selections in the 2013 and 2016 Major League Baseball Draft. Shawaryn then shot through the Boston Red Sox’s minor league system in three years before earning his first call up to major leagues on May 30.
Shawaryn pitched in relief for the Red Sox on Monday night against the Yankees, surrendering one run on two hits and walking two in two-thirds of an inning. He entered in the ninth inning of a 5-0 Red Sox loss. Shawaryn has pitched just 15.1 innings this season in 10 relief appearances and sports an 8.22 ERA that is a bit disjointed courtesy of a rough outing against the Yankees in London when he gave up eight runs on six hits in 1.1 innings of relief.
That 17-13 Yankees victory in the first-ever game at the Wembley Stadium shooting gallery on June 29 also did a number on the ERA of Shawaryn’s fellow New Jersey native Rick Porcello.
Shawaryn was sent back down to Triple-A Pawtucket on July 1 but returned to Boston when rosters expanded on Sept. 1. He has since pitched twice against the Yankees. He pitched the last two innings of a 5-1 Red Sox loss, last Saturday, permitting one run on three hits, striking out two and walking one.
Shawaryn possesses a low 90s fastball that he ratchets up to 94-95 while boasting a big slider that was been murder on both his collegiate and professional opponents. His third pitch is a changeup scouts say needs development. Nonetheless, Shawaryn appears in the Red Sox plans for 2020 as the 2018 World Series champs’ season spirals to a disappointing finish.
Shawaryn was the subject of a Big Ten Network feature (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BaeIeJck4V0) on May 16, 2016 touting his amazing collegiate career. The video includes a clip of Shawaryn pitching at Diamond Nation.
Shawaryn set Maryland career records for wins (30), strikeouts (307) and innings pitched (307.1) during his three years (2014-’16) playing for the Terrapins. He also owns the school’s single season wins (13) and strikeouts (138) records, setting both in 2015. He was named a Perfect Game First Team All-American in 2015 when he was also tabbed a First Team All-Big Ten honoree. Shawaryn earned First Team Freshman All-American in 2014 and was named to the Big Ten All-Tournament Team in 2016.
In 84 minor league games — 71 starts — Shawaryn went 18-20 with a 3.79 ERA, striking out 399 and walking 142 in 387 innings. He average 9.22 strikeouts per-nine innings, 3.28 walks per-nine and 0.95 home runs per-nine innings in his minor league career.
Shawaryn was drafted in the 32nd round by the Kansas City Royals out of Gloucester Catholic in 2013 before choosing to honor his commitment to Maryland. He did not commit to the Terrapins program until February of his senior year of high school. He was then drafted in the 5th round by the Red Sox in 2016, inking a $637,000 signing bonus.