Dover’s Davis has come a long way in four years

Dover’s Hiram Davis will get to take the field as a high school baseball player one last time when the Blue-Gold All-Star Game is held at Frawley Stadium on Monday at 6 p.m. Delaware State News/Marc Clery

DOVER — Hiram Davis didn’t want to play on Dover High’s varsity baseball team.

Not at first, when he was only a freshman.

“I just wanted to play with my friends,” said Davis.

But Senators’ coach Dave Gordon not only put the youngster on varsity, he put him in as the starting pitcher for Dover’s second game of the season that year.

It was against Easton, Md. and Davis was a nervous wreck.

“I got on the mound and I was balking every pitch,” said Davis, who was only 14 at the time. “My legs were shaking. I had to keep wiping my hands off.”

Davis not only survived the experience but he pitched five strong innings in Dover’s 11-3 victory that day.

Now a senior who will graduate on Wednesday night, Davis can look back at the start of his career and laugh. He’s played a lot of baseball for the Senators since that game.

Davis will get to take the field as a high school player one last time when the Blue-Gold All-Star Game is held at Frawley Stadium on Monday at 6 p.m.

He’s one of five from Henlopen Conference champion Dover slated to take part in the annual contest for high school seniors. Davis will be joined by teammates Andrew Carney and Michael Carrington along with coach Dave Gordon and assistant coach Bobby Brown.

Dover High’s (left to right) Michael Carrington, Andrew Carney and Hiram Davis are longtime teammates who all signed with DelState. Submitted photo

Part of the reason Davis made the Senators’ varsity right away was because of his versatility. In his career, he’s played pitcher, shortstop, second base, centerfield and left field.

In Davis’ freshman year, Gordon was hitting fielding practice before the season. But he also noticed Davis warming up in the bullpen outside the field.

“In my mind I’m thinking, if he looks that good in the bullpen, he doesn’t need to be wasting time throwing JV,” said Gordon.

It didn’t hurt that Davis always seemed to bring a great attitude with him.

“To me, Hiram’s personality always stuck out,” said Gordon. “He always showed up to the field with a big smile. He never had a bad day out there. For a coach, that’s really enjoyable to show up to the park and there’s kids there that want to learn and get better.

“He was fun to be part of.”

Gordon quickly learned that, along with his ability to pitch, Davis could make things happen with his speed.

In a late-season game against Delmar his freshman year, Davis was on first base when Tyler Rosello hit a two-out groundball to shortstop in the bottom of the seventh inning. When Rosello knocked the ball loose from the Wildcats’ first baseman on an attempted tag, Davis scrambled all the way around to score in the resulting confusion.

It was the winning run as the Senators rallied for four runs in the seventh to notch a 4-3, walk-off victory.

Gordon calls it one his favorite plays in his coaching career.

“The ball doesn’t even get to the outfield grass,” said Gordon. “It was pretty cool. Hiram didn’t even slide, that’s how fast he was.”

“I didn’t slide and Gordon starts yelling at me,” Davis said with a laugh. “To me, I didn’t think it was that close.”

Davis, Carney and Carrington have been playing baseball together since they were eight years old. They were teammates in Dover Little League and on various travel teams before getting to Dover High.

Hiram Davis will likely be an outfielder for the Hornets but he’d still like to get the chance to pitch sometimes. It’s always been his favorite position. Delaware State News/Marc Clery

In this senior class’ four years, the Senators were a combined 61-20 and reached the state semifinals twice.

And the partnership of Davis, Carrington and Carney won’t come to an end on Monday, either. All three players signed to continue their careers at Delaware State.

Davis will likely be an outfielder for the Hornets but he’d still like to get the chance to pitch sometimes. It’s always been his favorite position.

“You just control everything,” he said about being on the mound. “There’s no better feeling than striking someone out.”

Whatever position Davis plays, Gordon thinks he’s just starting to realize his full potential. He’s already seen the youngster come a long way from the squeaky-voiced freshman he was four years ago.

“He’s always been a mature kid,” said Gordon. “This year he was a lot more physical. I was just telling DelState that his best years are in front of him if he sticks with it. When he plays baseball with them every day, I think he’ll be pretty good.”

Extra innings

The Blue leads the all-time all-star game series by a 17-14-4 margin. The Gold hasn’t won since 2012 although two games since then have been rained out. … Appoquinimink also has three players on the Gold roster. … Salesianum has five players on the Blue roster while St. Mark’s and Delaware Military both have three. … Sussex Tech players have won three of the last seven Gold MVP awards.

Reach sports editor Andy Walter at walter@newszap.com

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