Normally, the first spring training game for a team doesn’t come with as much buzz and fanfare. This Tuesday, while Yankees’ fans won’t be able to watch the game on TV, they will see a name they are very familiar with on the opposing team. True, the Yankee story-line will be that Vidal Nuno will throw two innings to start the game and that manager Joe Girardi could go with some of the regulars to start this game. However, the one name that buzzes around this game is Jameis Winston.
You might recall that Winston, a 15th round pick of the Texas Rangers in the 2012 draft, from a different sport. You would be correct! This is the same Jameis Winston who led the Florida State Seminoles as a true freshman to a national title and is the reigning Heisman Trophy winner. The game will have a Seminole feel to it as Winston’s head coach, Jimbo Fisher, will throw out the first pitch at Steinbrenner Field.
Winston has openly talked about the idea of being a dual-sport athlete, such as fellow FSU alum Deion Sanders did back in the early 1990’s. He was a dual threat player for FSU in the 2013 college baseball season as he made 31 starts in the field and 17 appearances out of the bullpen. So far, in 2014, Winston has already recorded a save back on February 16th. He has also spent some time at right field, hitting .235 during the 2013 season. You would think we would see Winston later in Tuesday’s game considering he is considered the closer of this year’s Seminole team.
Spring Training brings hope to all teams in Major League Baseball and allows us to see some of the players that could be the future of the sport. Could Jameis Winston be the future in two sports? If so, you might remember Tuesday’s game if you are at Steinbrenner Field for a long time.