Tuesday, September 27, 2011

American Baseball Dreams Still Come True

Photo courtesy of the Seattle Mariners
Every college athlete dreams of the day they get a call from a professional recruiter.  When Vol State student Steve Delabar blew out his elbow in the 2001-2002 baseball season, there were concerns about his career goals to be a pitcher.  In 2004, he made it to the San Diego Padre’s minor league team and spent the next five years working through his injury.  After breaking his elbow, he ended up settling back home with his wife in Elizabethtown, Kentucky.  He worked as a substitute teacher and coached for the local high school.  He helped kids train at local facility named Players Dugout.  BUT the story does not end there.  Delabar just got signed with the Seattle Mariners.

Joel Lynn who is now the assistant coach at Vol State started as a player while Delabar was going through rehab.  “Stevie took me under his wing and let me stay with him when I moved to town,” said Lynn.  “I’m telling you, when it comes to baseball he is obsessed; whether playing, working, or watching it on TV, it is all he thinks about.  He had already blown his elbow out before I got here.  He was good, but he was not what he is now.  During rehab he struggled throwing strikes, and by the fifth inning he was out of the game.  If you watch him now. . . he pounds the strike zone and I would attribute that to maturity.”

Vol State Baseball Coach Mike Crossland remembers Delabar.  “He had an elbow injury and had to have a Tommy John surgery,” said Crossland.  “When he left here he signed for the Padres and pitched five plus years but never made it out of class-A-ball.  When he was here his velocity was probably 91-93 mph but now he is pitching in the big league at 97-100 mph.  He was a good kid from a good family.  This is good for him and his wife Jamie.”

Here is a video clip of Delabar’s first game for the Mariners. 
I will look forward to hearing more good things as his career continues to rise.

Volunteer State Community College

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