I’ve been playing baseball in Wichita, Kansas since the age of four, and I have been fortunate enough to play amongst some of the best prospects for the 2019 class. I feel like I have gotten better playing with them and if I make all the right moves I will be able to eventually make it to the MLB and play amongst the best in the world. While I believe that becoming a professional baseball player will be extremely difficult, I would hate myself if I didn’t at least try and pursue my dream career when I’ve had the fortune of being put in the position that I am in now.
Now in order to pursue my dream of playing baseball in the majors, I will need to go through college and prove myself to MLB teams. While a lot of people may think that it’s tough to make the MLB out of college, it’s much easier than other sports. The “MLB draft lasts for 40 rounds” and that’s not counting the compensatory picks (Cornelius 1). In the end, this totals to about 1200 picks per year. Let’s compare this to the NHL whose draft only lasts for 7 rounds totaling up to about 215 picks (Cornelius 1). However, just because there are more picks doesn’t mean it’s easy; “1 in every 200” high school seniors playing baseball get drafted by an MLB team (Cornelius 1). But it doesn’t end there; 7% of these players who are drafted will eventually play in the MLB, so the chances of getting into the MLB are rather slim (Cornelius 1). So yes, it’s hard to make it to the final destination, the show, as they call it. However, like I said before, I feel like this career is calling me and I at least have to try and make it.
That brings me to my next point: baseball isn’t just a sport, it’s something that I identify deeply with. According to an baseball player, Chris Sperry, he often found that being a player meant that you were part of an extended family, that you valued loyalty and motivation from your fellow teammates (Sperry 1). Growing up in a rather tightly-knit community, I’ve learned to really value these types of things, and I believe that when choosing a job, you need to pick one that you’ll be happy with (Sperry 1). If you choose a job that you hate, you will feel miserable, and if you choose a job that you love, you won’t even think it’s a job. You see all these major leaguers who have had careers for fifteen to twenty years, and when they hang it up it’s not because they’ve lost motivation but because they are just not physically capable of playing at the highest level anymore.
And while many of these players retire in their late thirties to early forties, they still have a life in the game if they choose to come back; they can become managers, owners, coaches, etc. So knowing that you’d have a second career after your primary one is rather comforting.
Lastly, many baseball players have a lot of spare time to do whatever they want like train, see family, and play video games (Wagner 1). As someone who values family traditions, the schedule of a baseball player seems to fit my needs. The Nationals’ shortstop, Ian Desmond, “arrives at Nationals Park by 1:30 pm,” and this seems like something I’d like because I am a laid back person who likes to have a life outside of a job (Wagner 1). I believe that there are many pros and cons that come with being an MLB player; these people work harder than most people in order to get to where they’ve been. However, I believe that I can meet my goal of becoming a player if I put the work in and don’t give up.
- Cornelius, Emily. “How Hard Is It to Make It to the MLB?” The Huffington Post, TheHuffingtonPost.com, 7 Oct. 2014, www.huffingtonpost.com/emily-cornelius/how-hard-is-it-to-make-it_1_b_5947308.html.
- Perry, Chris. “The Joys and Travails of Being A ‘Major Minor Leaguer.’” Baseball Life, Portland, the University of Portland’s Alumni Magazine., 1 July 1989, www.sperrybaseballlife.com/coach-sperry/my-life-in-pro-baseball/.
- Wagner, James. “Major Leaguers Have Time on Their Hands.” The Washington Post, WP Company, 15 May 2014, www.washingtonpost.com/sports/nationals/major-league-baseball-players-have-a-lot-of-time-on-their-hands/2014/05/14/ec46c8fa-d6de-11e3-8a78-8fe50322a72c_story.html?utm_term.