Hockaday, who graduated Sunday, finished with 31 career home runs, breaking New York Yankee and former Mount St. Joseph star Mark Teixeira's MIAA record by one. The 18-year-old Patriot was taken with the 425th pick overall in the 50-round draft.
John Carroll baseball head coach Joe Stetka, who is also an associate scout for the Orioles, said the Joppatowne resident is the first of his players to be drafted.
"I’ve been beating on [the Orioles] for a few years about K.J. But I’m happy as can be for K.J.," Stetka told Patch in a telephone interview. "It’s great for Harford County. It’s great for the Orioles. He’s a hometown kid—loves the Orioles."
Stetka said that though Hockaday played shortstop for the Patriots, he would move to third base and outfield at the next level.
The coach was overcome with emotion when he received a text from Hockaday's father.
"I was coming up [U.S. Interstate]-95 when I heard it and I had to pull off the road," Stetka said. "I looked down [to read the text] and when I pulled over off the road and that was it. I was done."
Hockaday signed with the University of Maryland earlier this school year. Stetka, who talked to Hockaday after he was selected, said the player has not made a decision on whether he will sign.
"That’s something that the Oriole brass will have to figure out along with K.J. [and his family]," Stetka said. "If not, K.J.’s got some pretty good options ahead of him."
Hockaday, who had a game Tuesday night with Youse's Orioles, was not immediately available for comment.
"It couldn’t have happened to a better kid than K.J. and his family. They’re just tremendous people," Stetka said. "There’s a lot of excitement going on in Joppatowne tonight."