The motorhome is parked at Thousand Trails RV Resort in La Conner, Washington. I’ll depart from here later this morning.
Mary is dealing with her over-flowing to-do list plate which can only be handled by herself. The construction of Mary’s rental continues along…slowly. She now is hoping to rejoin me by early September. 😦
My only Grandson, Eric, aspires to be a major league baseball catcher. He graduated high school in June and begins college soon. He turns 18 on August 11th…four days from now.
My son sent me the below article two days ago….
News from the Connecticut Shoreline
August 5, 2015
Valley Grad Jaillet to Play Ball at Division I Central Connecticut
Published August 05, 2015 11:33 a.m.
It’s been nearly 40 years since Brian Dayett became the first Valley Regional baseball player to make it to the big leagues. Eric Jaillet hopes the wait for No. 2 is almost over.
After leading the state in hitting this spring as a senior—and with a little help from first-year Coach Gary Marineau—Eric caught the eye of Central Connecticut State University. Now armed with an athletic scholarship, Eric will take his big bat and rocket right shoulder to New Britain, hoping the experience of playing Division I baseball is what he needs to join Dayett—who spent parts of five Major League seasons with the Yankees and Cubs—as the second ballplayer in Valley’s 63-year history to reach the big show.
“Honestly, I’m going to have to step up and really apply myself in college. There is going to be a lot of distractions. But I’m going to be there lifting, getting as much work as I can off the field when we aren’t practicing, so I’m ready on the field,” Eric says. “[Being a pro baseball player] has been a dream my whole life.”
Eric’s talent has always been undeniable. Playing in the AAU circuit at age 13, Eric’s throwing ability from behind the plate stifled opposing running games, while his natural athleticism allowed him to bat leadoff and patrol center field. But even though he led the Warriors in batting average as both a sophomore and a junior, the fact that Eric played for three different coaches in his first three high school seasons didn’t leave many supporters in his corner. There was no one urging scouts to watch Eric play or networking with local college coaches in hopes of giving him a shot at the next level. Enter Marineau.
After spending 19 years coaching at Cheney Tech in Meriden, Marineau took the head baseball job at Valley this spring and immediately recognized Eric’s potential. Having coached multiple All-State players, All-Americans, and big leaguers such as current Cub Chris Denorfia, Marineau knew Eric was right up there with the best he’s seen.
“Eric has the makeup, mentally and physically, to be a professional baseball player down the road. He has all the abilities and tools to be a pro,” Marineau says. “He is a great story for the younger kids. I didn’t even know who he was a year ago. You never know…I’d put him up in the top 10 players I’ve coached.”
The relationship between Eric and Marineau paid huge dividends for both. Marineau’s laid-back style allowed Eric to play loose and confident and the catcher led the state in hitting with a .558 average, was a First Team All-Shoreline Conference and Class S All-State selection, finished second in the state with 11 doubles, and came in sixth for the state’s Player of the Year voting.
“Coach was enthusiastic. He wanted to win and he is the type who’d do anything for his players,” says Eric. “I think the biggest thing is that at our practices were very laid-back. We didn’t have tough practices where past coaches made us run like we were in track. He focused on the baseball part of things.”
Eric’s success breathed life into a Valley team that had averaged less than seven wins per season in his first three years. This year, the Warriors won 14 games during the regular season en route to berths in both the Shoreline and Class S tournaments. Marineau says he had hoped to lay the program’s foundation this season, but with Eric’s help, the coach says that Valley “began to build the house.”
“It was extremely gratifying and I was so happy to finally get recognition,” Eric says. “The other teams in the Shoreline always looked at us as a ‘W.’ But coach Marineau brought us together as a team and a family, instead of individuals performing.”
And though he only spent one season playing under Marineau, Eric’s baseball career has been impacted in a big way as a result. Eric originally committed to play at Avery Point with the intent of eventually transferring to a Division I program, but it was Marineau who made the call to Central Head Coach Charlie Hickey, urging him to take a look at his hot-hitting, baserunner-sniping man behind the dish.
“[Eric] made a play at Morgan…A 1-2 pitch goes in the dirt and eight feet up the third base line. Eric springs on the ball and, barehanded, throws a laser to get the runner trying to go to second,” Marineau says. “There was no doubt in my mind that was a professional throw. He is just going to get better.”
Coach Hickey is banking on Eric’s continual development as the backstop gets ready to begin his career with the Blue Devils.
“He is developing into a good athlete and, hopefully, into a terrific baseball player,” Hickey says. “You love the versatility and athleticism to be able to catch and also go out and play center field.”
Eric credits many of the different coaches he’s played for through the years for his success, including the likes of his AAU skippers with the Shoreline Hammer Heads and Goose’s Gamers—the latter with which he competed at the National AAU Championships in Virginia last weekend. Still, if wasn’t for what Marineau did this year, Eric is unsure if he’d even have a college scholarship or be any closer to his lifelong dream of playing in the Majors.
“People know that I can play now. I know I can play. Now, I just need to go out there and do it,” he says. “It is my dream to get drafted, so I’m definitely going to work as hard as I can in college.”
Way to go, Eric!
I HOPE YOU ENJOYED THE STORY.
Yesterday was a cloudy/sunny and 71 degrees. Forecast for today is mostly sunny and 74 degrees.
Enjoying nice weather is another joy in the life of a full-time RVer!
The red dot on the below map shows my approximate location in the State of Washington. You may double left-click the map to make it larger…
Enjoying 65-75 degree temperatures with low humidity most of the year is a primary joy in the RVing lifestyle!
“Life is like riding a bicycle. To keep your balance you must keep moving”…Albert Einstein
On October 27, 2012, I created a two-minute video titled America The Beautiful. The music America The Beautiful is by Christopher W. French. The photos, which I randomly selected, are from the states of Arizona, California, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Mississippi, Montana, New Mexico, North Carolina, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Texas, Tennessee, Washington and West Virginia (not shown in that order)…are mine. Yup, That’s me standing in front of the Post Office in Luckenbach, Texas…Y’all!
Click this link to start the video. Make sure you have your speakers turned on and go to full screen asap.
If you would like to see my YouTube videos, click this link… http://www.youtube.com/user/JimJ1579/videos
There are more than 600 photo albums in my Picasa Web Albums File. To gain access, you simply have to click this link… https://picasaweb.google.com/jimjrver
If you have not checked out my Ramblin Man’s Photos Blog, you can do so by clicking this link…http://ramblinmanphotos.wordpress.com/
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All original material Copyright – Jim Jaillet 2015