Thursday, June 9, 2011

Johnathan Taylor and the Texas Rangers, class personified

To be truthful, I have no idea where to begin a post like this. I mean, just read these words:
Taylor, an outfielder from the University of Georgia, was a 33rd-round pick of the Texas Rangers, while Lamothe, a reliever from San Jacinto College, was the Houston Astros' 40th-round selection.
Taylor was left paralyzed from the chest down after he broke his neck in March during a game when he collided with teammate Zach Cone, the Rangers' supplemental-round pick Monday. Texas director of amateur scouting Kip Fagg said the team's selection of Taylor was "something we felt was right."
"We would have drafted him either way, regardless of any other circumstances involving his injury or Zach's draft status," Fagg said. "Our area scout in Georgia, Ryan Coe, has had a relationship with Johnathan since he was a high school player. The club has always liked his passion and ability as a player."
In a time when old guys like me begin to wonder if heart and passion even exist in pro sports these days, the Texas Rangers and the Houston Astros help fallen players realize their lifelong dreams. Shame on me for doubting. I mean, just read Coach Perno's response:
"This was truly a classy move and a great gesture on the part of the Texas Rangers organization," Georgia coach David Perno said. "J.T. is definitely a player worthy of getting drafted. He's been a big part of our program, and we are all very excited for him. When I talked to him after he got the call, he was in the middle of his rehabilitation work, laughing and having a good time and was thrilled to be drafted."
Truly happy for Johnathan and his family today. What a thrill. What a dream still realized even after a tragic accident a few months ago.

And a very special hat tip to the Rangers and the Astros (who also drafted a paralyzed player) for helping guys like me restore our faith in professional sports. And most of all helping players realize their dream of making the bigs!


AthensHomerDawg said...

Good stuff. Thank you.

Anonymous said...

One of the rumors that is circulating in Texas is that they plan to put him on the 40 man roster for one day. Once you have made the permanent 40 man roster of any team in MLB, even just for one day, you have medical benefits for life and they think this would be a way to pay his ongoing medical care to get rehabilitated. There are some other rumors that they may try to find a place for him in the team organization but just rumors. The Rangers are a pure class organization.

AthensHomerDawg said...

Off topic but more good news. The Hillbillies loose another D tackle. When it rains it pours!

Anonymous said...

Texas will be in town to play the Braves 6/17-6/19.

Anonymous said...

Here is a great summary of former awbarn player Nick Fairley found here:

Dawgfan17 said...

I'll be cheering for the Rangers in any game from now on unless they play the Braves. Classiest move I've seen in sports in a long time.