SEVENTEEN AND ON THE ROAD AGAIN

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Gavin Meyer • Courtesy Photo of Rusty Strait

Seventeen-year-old Gavin Meyer, not yet graduated from high school just returned from his umpteenth road trip to play baseball. Part of the Performance Finish Athlete on a tour he has previously traveled with around the country to pitch in youth leagues that are highly covered by major league baseball scout. We’ve been following his young career (seems like an old pro already) and expect that we are only in the beginning. I sat down with him this week for a quick interview about his recent games in Monroe, Louisiana.

Q. Tell me about your latest excursion into the South?

A. I’m really close to my PFA coach. We’ve been discussing this trip for a while, but my dad, who always gives me sound advice, wasn’t sure I should go, considering the COVID-19 virus scare and all. However, after lots of discussions, he finally gave me the go-ahead and that’s how it came about.

Q. I am told that you were voted most valuable pitcher in the series.

A. I won the two games I pitched in. It was a six-game series.

Q. How did you get there?

A. The team flew into Dallas/Fort Worth where we were picked up by a big van and motored to Monroe, which gave us a chance to see the landscape which was cool.

Q. What kind of arena did you play in?

A. The field was nice with deer sands all around. The outfield made you feel at home. Also, we have furnished a big house for the team – almost like a frat house without the booze, of course. We brought along a ping pong set up and held ping pong tournaments in the house.

Q. Where did your team come from – anyone else from Hemet besides you?

A. Mostly California. I was the only one from Hemet. Others came from Los Angeles, Pasadena, Palm Desert, Calabasas and one guy from Colorado from a younger team.

Q. Were there a lot of major league scouts there?

A. You never can be sure. There usually are. They don’t like to be identified, but you know they are there – always looking up the road for prospects.

Q. What was the tournament called?

A. The Perfect Game. The games are limited, either 2 hours or 7 innings – whichever comes first.

Q. I guess you did okay then.

A. I played 6 innings in the first game, and with a day off, I closed a game with 20 pitches. It went pretty smooth. The Perfect Game is a big organization and gets pretty good ratings nationally.

Q. Did the thought of major league scouts in the stands intimidate you?

A. Not really. You know they’re there. Just go out and play your best game. If they see you, it’s okay. If not, maybe next time. You never really know.

Q. You are on a railroad to the majors, aren’t you?

A. That’s the Goal.

Q. Cal State Fullerton, where you have an athletic scholarship, is sending you to a Collegiate League for four months. Do you know where that takes place?

A. I believe it is in San Jose, but not sure. It is designed to kind of whip me into shape. I have a lot of work today. I love baseball, but it is hard work if you have ambitions to become a major league player – and I sure do.

It just so happens that his mother Karlee Meyer is Hemet’s new Mayor. Both his parents Roger and Karlee have always encouraged their kids to follow their dreams. Baseball, for sure is not something acquired through influence. Baseball players come by their jackpots by hard work, ambition and opportunity. This kid has something special.

Keep it up Gavin – your hometown is rooting for you. Just sayin’

rustystrait@gmail.com

Rusty Strait • Senior Reporter

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