He also made the move from relieving to starting - and earned the title that year of most impressive team hurler, The Observer wrote.
"I just wanted to pitch," Madsen told The Observer of his improvement. "It's just getting mentally prepared from the start of the game. It makes me feel like I have more control of the game. It's pretty much my game to win or lose."
Madsen went on from Notre Dame the next year to the pros. He ultimately played two seasons there. He didn't make single-A.
Madsen's pro career began in 1989, signed by the Dodgers as an undrafted free agent out of Notre Dame.
At Notre Dame, Madsen remains in the record books for endurance. He started 15 games in 1988 and 17 in 1989, both top five at the school. He also won 10 games, tied for sixth all-time at Notre Dame.
Before an April 1989 start, Madsen's head coach Pat Murphy praised the right-hander to The Observer.
"He's a pitcher in the true sense of the word," Murphy told The Observer. "I'd like Erik Madsen on my team, I don't care where I was managing. If I were managing in the major leagues I'd like an Erik Madsen on my team because he knows how to pitch, he's a tremendous competitor, a tremendous person, and a tremendous personality."
With the Dodgers, Madsen started at rookie Great Falls. He got into 23 games, started one. He went 3-3, with two saves and a 5.13 ERA. He then moved to short-season Yakima for 1990. He went 1-0, with a 3.38 ERA over 13 outings, one start. Those two seasons marked the extent of his pro career.
- Notre Dame Observer, April 8, 1988, Page 14: What a difference a year makes for Madsen
- Notre Dame Observer, April 26, 1989, Page 16: ND baseball prepares for IU
Players/Coaches Featured: 2,819
Made the Majors:1,067-37.9%
Never Made Majors:1,752-62.1%-X
5+ Seasons in the Majors: 444
10+ Seasons in the Minors:266