TAMPA - The New York Yankees gave Armwood's Sterling Hitchcock the chance to turn pro, without turning his back on his education. Hitchcock, the county's most highly recruited left-handed pitcher, signed a professional contract with the Yankees Wednesday, passing up a University of South Florida baseball scholarship in the process. Hitchcock, who signed with USF in April, was the Bulls top pitching recruit.
The Yankees, Hitchcock said, gave him a $50,000 signing bonus and agreed to pay for four years of college within two years of his leaving baseball. Hitchcock was New York's ninth-round pick in last week's major league summer free-agent draft.