Drew Storen, Jeff Samardzija headline Five-Member Indiana Baseball's 2023 Hall of Fame Class
Drew Storen is a 2007 graduate of Brownsburg HS. As a freshman, was #2 pitcher (3-0, 1.17 ERA) behind Lance Lynn on eventual 2004 State Runner-Up. As a sophomore, helped Brownsburg to undefeated (35-0) 2005 state championship and number two ranking in the country by Baseball America. The Indianapolis Star called that team, "The greatest HS team in Indiana history." Was 9-0 with 86 strikeouts in 57 innings for the state champs. For his career, finished 28-2 with 270 strikeouts and an ERA of 1.61. At the plate, hit .400 with 16 HR. Drafted by the NY Yankees in the 2007 draft but attended Stanford University. In two seasons with the Cardinal, named to three Freshman All-American teams, two-time first team All-Pac 12, got the win in game one of the 2008 College World Series, led Stanford as a sophomore in saves, wins and appearances, and named Stanford MVP for 2009 season. Finished his collegiate career with a 12-4 record, 26 saves, 59 appearances, and an ERA of 3.84. As a draft eligible sophomore, taken by the Washington Nationals as the 10th overall pick of the 2009 MLB draft. In 8 years of his MLB career with the Nationals, Blue Jays, Mariners and Reds, posted career totals of 29- 18, 99 saves, 3.45 ERA, and 417 strikeouts. Had 6 postseason appearances for Washington in 2012 and 2014 with one win and one save. Drew and his wife Brittani currently reside in Carmel and have two boys: Jace (6) and Pierce (2).
Jeff Samardzija is a 2003 graduate from Valparaiso HS and is considered one of the best athletes in Indiana state history. By his senior year, he was recognized as one of the state's best football players and was the runner-up for the Indiana Mr. Football award. Samardzija was a three-time All-State player and was selected to the Indiana All-Star team. In baseball, he was a runner up for the Mr. Baseball award as a senior, a three-year varsity letterman, and an All-State honoree as a center fielder. He hit .375 with five home runs, 37 RBIs as a junior, and hit .481 with eight homers and 50 RBIs as a senior. As one of the nation’s top football recruits, he chose Notre Dame where he was also invited to pitch for the baseball team. Jeff was a two-time All American wide receiver, a two- time All-American pitcher, and a two-time runner up for the Biletnikoff Award given to the nation’s best wide receiver. Despite his football skills and the likelihood of being drafted as a first round pick in the NFL, Samardzija opted to play professional baseball after pitching for the Irish for three seasons. Jeff was drafted by the Chicago Cubs in the fifth round of the 2006 MLB Draft. He made his Major League debut for the Cubs in July 2008. In addition to the Cubs, Samardzija played for the Oakland Athletics (2014), Chicago White Sox (2015) and San Francisco Giants (2016-2020). He was named an All Star in 2014. His career pitching record is 80-106 with a 4.15 ERA and 1,449 strikeouts. Samardzija pitched for 13 full seasons at the Major League level. Jeff and his older brother Sam represent a rare achievement in VHS history with each being selected as All State performers in both football and baseball.
Leonard “Lefty” Johnston graduated from Western Michigan University and was a minor league outfielder from 1952 to 1967. He played for the Indianapolis Indians from 1960-1966 and played in the Chicago White Sox, New York Yankee, Philadelphia Phillies, Cincinnati Reds, and Washington Senator organizations. Lenny was a career .286 hitter and had 525 stolen bases. He led his league in stolen bases 6- years in a row from 1953-1958. In 1956 he led the International League in hits with 182. He was a minor league manager for 9 years and was the with the Bluefield Orioles in the Appalachian League and the Baltimore Orioles in Sarasota in an administrative role. In 2020, Lenny was inducted into the Appalachian League Hall-of-Fame. He served in scouting, scouting supervisor, crosschecker and minor league coordinator roles until retiring in 2019. He is currently living in Nashville TN.
Wayne Johnson spent twelve years as a varsity assistant to Greg Silver at Mooresville before spending two stints as the head coach at Brownsburg High School. At the helm of the Bulldog program, he compiled a school record 278 wins over 15 years. During his first stint from 1987 – 2000, Johnson and his Bulldogs took home Sectional Championships in 1988, 1992, 1995, and 1996. The Bulldogs were also Regional Champions in 1996. Then on short notice, Johnson was asked to return to coach Brownsburg in 2011 and won another Sectional title. While Johnson’s victories and championships are impressive, his contributions to Brownsburg Baseball far exceed his won/loss record. The 1990 Central Suburban Athletic Conference Coach of the Year was instrumental in the construction of Brownsburg’s home baseball field, Mary Beth Rose Park. Johnson partnered with countless members of the community to design and build the stadium and it has served to host over a thousand games since the spring of 1988......Rose Park is still considered a premier location to play baseball in the state of Indiana. Coach Johnson was a big supporter of the Indiana Baseball Hall of Fame and their fundraising efforts. He also owned a business, Johnson Sports Collectibles, in addition to teaching for 39 years at Mooresville and Brownsburg High Schools. Wayne impacted many lives through the game of baseball and his presence is sorely missed. He is being inducted posthumously as he passed away on December 19, 2018.