By David Lee
Morris News Service
Pittsburgh Pirates right-hander and former Greenbrier standout Brandon Cumpton was honored Friday night during the Wolfpack’s basketball games against Evans.
Cumpton, who made his major league debut for the Pirates in 2013, had his No. 12 jersey retired by the school during a ceremony between the girls and boys games.
“It means a lot for them to do this for me,” Cumpton said. “I was caught off guard. To be able to come back and see everyone, it’s pretty special.”
Cumpton’s Greenbrier jersey was unveiled next to his current Pirates uniform in glass cases. His former high school coach, Ed Williams, helped present the retired jersey for the star who led the Wolfpack to two state championships in 2006-07.
“I played alongside some great teammates, and I’m glad I’m able to stay in touch,” Cumpton said. “They have accomplished some great things, and it’s all well deserving.”
Cumpton recorded a 2.05 ERA over five starts and six total appearances in 2013, striking out 22 in 30 2/3 innings in his first taste of the major leagues.
The Pirates went on to become National League Wild Card champions and played in their first playoffs since 1992. Pittsburgh’s fans morphed into rabid supporters, culminating in a black out for the wild card game.
“You could slowly see the city change and support us. You’d see more jerseys walking around town. And the black out was one of the coolest things I’ve ever experienced,” he said.