by Jerry Reilly
Tramuta inks pact with L.A. Dodgers
But that hasn’t stopped the Fredonia native from taking his shot and giving up his final year of college eligibility. Tramuta, 20, signed a one year contract with the Dodgers on Friday, opting for a pro baseball career rather than returning to St. Bonaventure University, where he batted .328 with 30 RBI and was chosen second team Atlantic 10 shortstop this past season.
“The Dodger association felt I’m ready and they put together a good package,” said Tramuta, a 1988 graduate of Fredonia High. “I’m excited. Real excited.” The Dodgers awarded him an undisclosed signing bonus plus a standard monthly salary and meal money. In addition, the contract calls for the Dodgers to pay for his final year of college when his playing career is over.
The signing, presided over by Dodger area scout Bob Miske, took place at noon in the Terrace Place home of Tramuta’s parents, Joe and Janice. Also present was St. Bonaventure baseball coach Larry Sudbrook. Miske said he kept tabs on Tramuta's progress this season after liking what he saw of him as a sophomore. “I like the way he plays shortstop,” said Miske. “He has an outstanding arm, plus hands. I hope he progresses with his bat. His hitting will take him as far as he can go.”
Sudbrook said Tramuta, who is slightly built at 6-0 and 165 pounds, has improved in each of his three seasons at St. Bonaventure. He began as a walk-on and eventually landed a starting position and a scholarship. “He was always an excellent defensive player, but at first we weren’t sure if he’d ever hit,” Sudbrook said. “Then he started hitting in the spring of his freshman year and beat out of scholarship player. “He was always an excellent defensive player. “He kept refining his game. And I think he’ll get bigger and stronger. I don’t think he’s reached his full strength yet.”
Tramuta was the second player from St. Bonaventure to sign a contract this spring. Kevin Gallaher, the No. 1 pitcher on the 28-14 team, sign a free agent contract with Houston prior to the draft. He’s expected to report to Auburn of the New York-Pennsylvania League.
Tramuta is scheduled to report to mini-camp Monday with the other Dodger draftees at Dodgertown in Vero Beach, Fla. The Dodgers will then assign him to a team, most likely one of the Class A affiliates.