New Zealand Native Pita Rona Signs With Orioles After Making Transition From Softball to Baseball (Video)


January 19, 2012

Pita Rona has a chance to make history in Major League Baseball.

No player from New Zealand has ever made it to the major leagues. After the Orioles reportedly signed Rona to a seven-year minor league contract, the corner infielder could become the first.

Unfortunately, there are a lot of obstacles in his path. For one, his new contract doesn’t even bring him to the United States, but sends him to the MLB’s Australian Academy. If he performs well there, he could end up with one of the Orioles’ minor-league affiliates.

On top of that, the 17-year-old prospect has only been playing baseball full time for a few months. He was also a notable softball player for New Zealand, even competing on the national team with his father. Late last year, he switched schools to focus on baseball.

Needless to say, Rona will probably not be facing off against the Red Sox any time soon. With how hard it is for minor leaguers to make it to the pros, he might want to look into other lines of work. Perhaps sheep shearing might be more his taste.

Check out Rona going yard in a softball game in the video below.

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