Pearl River Community College has sent a number of its baseball standouts to the professional ranks, and now some of those former Wildcats are returning to lead a new generation of players.
PRCC will host a special Day with the Pros, this coming Sunday, Oct. 1, at Wildcat Field on the Pearl River campus. A number of ex-Wildcats have indicated that they plan to attend, and Wildcat head coach Michael Avalon says other standouts may join in.
“We had so many of our guys who came out last fall and helped us, guys like Ashley (Graeter) and Zach Clark,” said Avalon. “We thought it would be cool to give them a chance to interact with some younger players.”
The camp is for young players ages 5-14 and begins at 1:30 p.m. Cost is $75 per player.
Among the former Wildcats who are expected to participate are Ashley Graeter, who is in the Colorado Rockies organization, Braxton Lee, who won the Southern League battle title this past season as a member of the Miami Marlins organization, and Jacob Taylor, who plays in the Pittsburgh Pirates organization.
Also expected to attend is former Petal High star Anthony Alford, who made his major-league debut with the Toronto Blue Jays in July, and is listed as No. 44 on the current list of the Top 100 prospects on mlb.com.
PRCC also has a former big-leaguer on staff in assistant coach Rhyne Hughes, who spend some time on the Baltimore Orioles roster, and he will join Wildcat players and coaches in helping with instruction.
“I think it lets kids see their dream in front of them,” Avalon said. “These guys went to the same high school, the same elementary school as they do, and hopefully it will motivate them.”
For more information and to register, visit prccbaseballcamps.com or call new Wildcat assistant coach Sam Robertson at (972) 310-8660.
Meanwhile, the Wildcats are in the midst of fall practice, and Avalon is confident after a 29-20 season this past spring that saw PRCC advance to the semifinals of the NJCAA Region 23 Tournament.
“We’ve got a lot of talent coming back, but the fall is really a good time for our freshmen to get their feet wet, to see what they can do early,” Avalon said. “It’s more about letting them get a feel for the speed of the game, which is significantly faster than in high school.”
(Photo courtesy of mlb.com)
Former Petal High star Anthony Alford, now a top prospect in the Toronto Blue Jays organization, is expected to attend PRCC’s Day with the Pros baseball camp this Sunday.