Pine-Richland’s Joey Perry catches on with Seton Hall

Sunday, February 12, 2023 | 11:01 AM

Joey Perry has had a connection with former Pittsburgh Pirates closer Jason Grilli, and that helped him find the right college to continue his baseball career.

Grilli is a family friend and has helped Perry as a mentor on the mental side of baseball.

He’s also a Seton Hall graduate and urged Perry to look into the school as a potential destination.

It ended up being the right fit.

Perry signed with Seton Hall on national signing day Feb. 1.

“In my junior year, I was starting to look into my options and he kept telling me that I had to go visit (Seton Hall),” Perry said. “He said he loved it and it was the best years of his life. I did and it ended up working out. It’s pretty cool and something we get to share now.

“I have to thank (Pine-Richland baseball coach Kurt Wolfe) as well. He was super helpful with my decision. I’m looking forward to a great spring season and hopefully we can bring home another championship.”

Perry was second-team all-section last year as a catcher for the Rams, which shared section title honors with North Allegheny.

He also played on the football team as an edge rusher, helping the Rams win the Class 5A state championship.

Perry took a visit to Seton Hall in June and the coaches came to scout him at the Diamond Nation showcase in New Jersey. Perry went there with his travel team, Team All-American.

The Seton Hall coaching staff liked what they saw and gave him an offer.

“I’ve played baseball my entire life and my dream was to play at the next level,” Perry said. “It’s even cooler that I get to play at the Division I level and show what I can do.”

Perry becomes the latest Rams catcher to play Division I baseball. Matt Wood played at Penn State and was drafted by the Milwaukee Brewers in the fourth round of last year’s MLB amateur draft.

Along with being a catcher at Seton Hall, Perry said he will get some work in the outfield and possibly the infield as a utility player.

He’s going to major in biology with a track to pre-med.

Before he heads off to Seton Hall, Perry is looking to aid the Rams in defending their section championship. Last year, they made a surprise run to the top of the standings, boosted by a large group of underclassmen.

With many of those players returning, Perry has his sights set on a special senior season.

“We have a lot of young pitchers, which is encouraging,” Perry said. “Jacob McGuire is back and he’ll anchor the pitching staff, but we have a lot of young guys that stepped up last year and will step up again this year. Coach Wolfe kept a lot of young guys on varsity last year with the hopes of building up the program for future years. I think we’re going to be even better this year.”

Jerin Steele is a freelance writer


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