Tucker took it all in stride. “It was my goal to move up,’ Tucker said. “It is completely different in (the NY-Penn League). I was the youngest guy there. There are some guys who are 19, but most of the guys are 21-23; guys who came out of college. “I thought I did well. I know my numbers don’t show it, but there’s a lot more to this game than numbers. The big thing at this level is that you just can’t throw the fastball. You have to spot the ball and I thought I did that pretty well.’ Now, he has his sights on playing in Single-A next season. “I’ll go to spring training and the goal is to move up,’ Tucker said. “I’d like to (start) in low-A ball. But I really have no control over that. I just have to go out and pitch well and what ever happens, happens.’ Tucker wasn’t the only former area pitcher to play in the New York-Penn League. Former La Salle High star Jason Schmidt, who was one of the top relievers in the NCAA Division I this past spring for University of Pacific, was named NYPL Reliever of the Year earlier this month. Schmidt, pitching for the Staten Island Yankees, was 5-1 with 13 saves to rank among the league leaders. He had a paltry ERA of 0.28 while striking out 46 in 32 innings. Steve Ramirez can be reached at (626) 962-8811, Ext. 2161, or by e-mail at [email protected] 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! WHEN it came to high school baseball, Ryan Tucker had very few peers. But now, the former Temple City High School star is just one of many who hope to one day reach the major leagues. AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREThe top 10 theme park moments of 2019 “It’s different (in the minor leagues). You’re more on your own, but not really. You have your own routine and have to have a game plan. The big thing is you have to have more than one pitch because everyone throws hard.’ Still, Tucker was solid for the rookie league Gulf Coast Marlins. He was 3-3 with a 3.69 ERA while starting seven of the eight games in which he appeared. He also struck out 23 in 31 2/3 innings. His performances impressed the Marlins brass enough that he was promoted to the New York-Penn League at the end of July. The low- tier Single-A league is usually reserved for players who were drafted out of college. “It felt good when they told me,’ Tucker said. “In rookie league, you play at noon and there are no fans. So to move up and play at night and in front of people … that felt good.’ Tucker did have his struggles. He was just 1-1 with an 8.36 ERA in four games, striking out 18 in 14 innings. But he was pleased with his overall performance, and most baseball experts believe he is ahead of schedule for a first-year prospect. Tucker’s first steps came this past summer when he played for two teams in the Florida Marlins organization. He made steady progress, starting the season in Gulf Coast League at Jupiter, Fla. before playing the final month at A-level Jamestown (N.Y.) of the New York- Penn League. “It went well,’ said Tucker, who combined to go 4-4 during the summer. “I didn’t really expect anything. I though it went well. I threw pretty good.