Glenwood pupil to realise dream of playing baseball in the U.S.

2013-08-22 00:00

CALLAN Pearce (18), headboy of Glenwood Boys’ High School, is set to take another step — his biggest yet — as he pursues his dream and ambition of playing professional baseball.

In July this year he signed a seven-year contract with the Minnesota Twins in the U.S., which starts in March next year after a scout spotted his pitching talent at the U16 inter-provincial tournament in Durban.

“The scout followed my progress, which has culminated in my contract. It’s unbelievable and an opportunity of a lifetime,” said Pearce.

“Baseball is my life and this is something I cannot afford to take for granted. There’s much work ahead, but it’s progress toward my dream and goal.”

With all his needs met, from accommodation to food, Pearce will spend six months in the U.S., returning home for the off season.

“It sounds quite grand in the scheme of things, but it’s in my hands to make it work. If I don’t train and make progress, the contract can be terminated immediately,” he said.

Pearce’s first month will be spring training, followed by extended spring training, then a short season. He is not expecting a bed of roses and knows nothing less than hard work, sacrifice, focus and dedication will ensure success.

Pearce started playing baseball when he was three, thanks to his father Gary, who played at club level.

“I started at the Umbilo Buzzards, which unfortunately went under, and now play Major A league at Stella,” he said.

“I have played A league for the past three years and am a specialised pitcher, not doing much batting as such. It is specialised in that I may pitch for an innings or be called on to make a single pitch, depending on what the state of the game is.

“We are valued assets of the game and risk being hit and injured if we bat too often,” he added.

To succeed in the game, Pearce trains every day, fitting in his strength and throwing routines with schoolwork, particularly with matric finals looming. He is so focused on making it in baseball he hasn’t quite decided or even thought of looking at life beyond baseball.

“All I want to do is make baseball my life,” he said. “If I had to think about studying, I would probably look at sport psychology. Baseball tends to rub out everything else right now, although I am aiming for three distinctions in my final exams.”

As baseball is not a school sport, Pearce shows his prowess at cricket, softball and hockey in Glenwood’s colours.

He is the 1st team hockey captain, vice-captain of the 1st cricket team and has represented the SA U19 team at softball.

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