A lot of people look at me on game day or in the weight room and say, "You look like you want to kill somebody." This isn't entirely true, if true at all. Let's back track:
It's my Freshman year of high school and I've just finished playing Pony League baseball, age 14. I'm skinny with no muscle on me, but tall. I go out for the Freshman baseball team and end up starting every game, either in the outfield, first base, or pitching. At the end of the season my coach says, "I didn't even think you were good enough to make it, let alone play every game."
This is the moment I always think back to. "Not good enough." This is why I have this look every time I take the mound and every minute I put in in the weight room. I want to prove to everyone that I am good enough to play this game. Most of all, I want to prove this to myself. I've had unlimited support from my family and close friends, but some just see me as a tall skinny kid who has an "ok" fastball and decent off speed stuff. This is why I'm pushing myself so much. I didn't get any offers to play under scholarship out of high school. I made college baseball happen for myself. I never got first team all-conference in high school, yet I had the best record out of anyone in my four years. I'm used to this kind of thinking, and it's what gets me excited to play this game every day. I wake up and think about my goal, I go to bed thinking about my goal. When I'm taking tests, I'm thinking about it. Even when I'm sleeping I'm dreaming about it. This game means more to me than anything. It's how I want to support my family, and it's how I want my kids to learn hard work someday.
I guess the main point I'm trying to make is that I don't care how distant a dream playing baseball after college is. I have four years in college to become the best player/person I can become. If it happens, I did it for myself, with no help from "who I know." And I know there will be people who read this and chuckle, because I still am underweight or "not talented enough." Honestly, I'd laugh in their face if given the chance. Only I have control of how long I will play this game, and I'm going to do everything in my power to play it as long as I can. If there's kids reading this, do what makes you happy for as long as you can. Do everything you can to extend that time you've been given. I can't imagine waking up and not being able to play. I don't want that day to come for a very long time. And this is why I work my a** off.