Morning Paper Banter

I’m an early riser regardless of what time I go to bed.  I woke up at 7:00 o’clock this morning.  I fixed the roster and did a couple other things before heading downstairs to enjoy the continental breakfast.  Not bad, a bagel, an english muffin and a small muffin for me this morning.  Lakewood’s hotel had the best continental breakfast I have ever seen by the way.  They even had a chef making omelets.  I digress.

I picked up a copy of USA Today and went to the sports section.  Two articles really caught my attention today.

1) Cover Story – Once homeless, never hopeless- It is the story of Michael Oher, who is projected as a first round pick in the upcoming NFL Draft.  He never knew his dad and his mom was addicted to drugs.  Essentially, its the story of survival.  I love these kind of success stories – rags to riches.

2) High school junior chooses pro basketball in Europe – Are you kidding me? Jeremy Tyler has left high school during his junior year to go play professionally overseas before declaring for the NBA draft in 2011.  I guess I understand skipping college, but high school?  What if this kid never makes it? Then what?

I’ve always been a proponent of the value that is the college experience.  This relates to the Shorebirds and Minor League Baseball because many of the players jump straight from high school to the minors (Tyler Kolodny, L.J. Hoes, Xavier Avery, Andy Schindling just to name a few).  The lure is obviously a chance to get into the farm system and develop at a quicker rate.  But, I think a guy like Matt Weiters (catcher for Triple-A Norfolk) is a great example to follow (obviously Weiters is rare breed).  He played three years at Georgia Tech and delevoped into now the future catcher for the Orioles. 

The problem is that most top high schools guys don’t want to be locked at a college for three years before turning pro (Ron Welty is an example of this – his interview will be available on “Around the Bases” later today).  He was considering attending Kansas State before deciding to go the JUCO route.  Remember, if you decide to go to college, you can’t be drafted until after your junior season.  Thats why junior colleges are popular. 

Just a little food for thought.  Each situation is very different so its hard to say one way is better than the other. 

Position players are lifting today at 9:45.  First bus to the ballpark at 2:15 again. 

Until next time, Go Shorebirds!


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