LHP Tom Oldham (Photo/Max Waugh)
Well this is the last online journal before the All-Star break. This means the first half is almost over. We just got back from a 13 day road trip traveling to Tulsa, then Wichita, then finally Frisco.
Now back at home, we are currently playing the Midland Rockhounds, who we are battling it out with for first place.
Ok, now that you are caught up from the last journal, onto the readers' questions.
The first question I received was a general question about Rene Rivera, asking if I had any insight on him. Well, it's no surprise to any of us on the Missions that he is doing what he is doing with the Mariners. Rene hit well for us all year long while he was with us and was consistent behind the plate as he always has been.
The next question is related towards the players who come out of college and enter the pro ranks. "I have a question concerning college," the reader said. “You were drafted out of college after your junior year, which happens to many other baseball players, as well. I am wondering if you are able to take classes in the offseason or what you do in order to finish your college degree, or if many even choose to finish their degree?”
This is a great question that happens to many players in professional baseball. Major League Baseball has a scholarship program that helps those players who came out of college and haven’t finished their degree. This allows you to finish up your degree or take classes on your way to finishing in the off-season.
The timing of classes makes it tough, though. Personally, I have a year left of school at Creighton and haven’t been able to finish up yet, although I definitely will at some point. What I mean by the timing is that when our regular season finishes up in early September many schools have already started classes and missing a couple weeks of class is sometimes too hard to make up.
And that doesn’t even take into account the players who will go to Instructional League, the Fall League or the teams making the playoffs. But, if the classes fit in during the off-season you can definitely get some schooling done.
The last question is the concern over changing a pitcher’s mechanics when it has worked for the pitcher in the past. This varies from person to person, but I think if a change is being employed it is for the best. Having a consistent, efficient delivery that you can effectively repeat is the goal for every pitcher.
Thanks again for the questions and the continued support throughout the season. Please email all future questions to firstname.lastname@example.org or simply post a message at "Tom Oldham's Mailbox" on the InsidethePark.com message board.