COLUMBIA — Mike Cisco couldn't take it anymore. After a few hours huddled near a computer Friday afternoon, listening to the Major League Baseball draft on a Web cast, enough was enough.
So, Cisco and his father grabbed their tackle boxes and went fishing. The fish were biting, Cisco said. Eventually, a pro club did, too.
The Philadelphia Phillies took the South Carolina right-hander in the 36th round. The Mount Pleasant native said Friday night he plans to sign and will head early next week to Clearwater, Fla., for a team mini-camp.
"We were juggling phone calls and catching fish when it happened. It was a great feeling," Cisco said. "It's an honor to be picked up by any team in that draft. It's been a lifelong dream and a goal of mine."
Cisco followed several USC players taken in the draft, including a couple of his buddies from the Charleston area who hit it big Thursday.
First baseman Justin Smoak of Goose Creek went 11th overall to Texas. The Mets took shortstop Reese Havens of Sullivan's Island 11 picks later, at No. 22. Both are expected to make more than $1 million in signing bonuses.
Cisco, Havens and Smoak arrived at USC together. And they'll leave together.
The drama Friday for Cisco came because of some misinformation. A Phillies scout said, because of some signability questions with prospects ahead of him on the draft board, that Cisco would be taken by the 10th round.
The 10th came and went, without his name being called. Cisco was confused. So was the scout he'd been speaking with. "It made every round after that really long," Cisco said. "You had to keep waiting."
Fed up, Cisco unwound with a rod and reel.
On the water, he continued to negotiate with the Phillies. Eventually, they met in the middle on a signing bonus that Cisco chose not to divulge.
Thursday, coach Ray Tanner's lineup was raided. Friday, his pitching staff got hit a bit.
Left-hander Will Atwood was taken by the Washington Nationals in the 12th round. He's expected to sign.
USC senior catcher Phil Disher went in the 15th round to Houston. Like Cisco, senior reliever Brandon Todd also went in the 36th round, to the Florida Marlins.
After a fantastic freshman year and a solid sophomore season, things certainly didn't go to plan this past season for Cisco, the right-hander from Wando.
Cisco began the year as USC's ace and got off to a good start. But, midway through the SEC season, Cisco became hittable when he continued to leave pitches over the plate.
Kentucky and LSU each tagged him for more than 10 earned runs. After another rough start against Florida, Tanner moved Cisco to the bullpen where he remained for the rest of the year.
Even Cisco's last appearance, a blown save against James Madison in the NCAA regional, didn't go well. He did wind up getting the win, though, when Havens connected for a walkoff home run.
Cisco finished the year 6-3 with a pair of saves and a 4.82 ERA.
Cisco called the next step "a new beginning."
In a way, Cisco said he's excited to attempt to keep the family legacy in baseball moving forward.
His uncle and father played professionally. His grandfather, Galen, was a major leaguer from 1961-69 and, later, a big league pitching coach. Mike still leans on his grandfather for all sorts of baseball advice. He called Galen his unofficial advisor for this week's draft dealings.
Mike's younger brother, Drew, is a young star at Wando. Some think he could bypass the college level and turn pro out of high school.