NGU to MLB- Read all about Michael “Nightmare” Rodriguez’s story to the MLB

NGU to MLB- Read all about Michael “Nightmare” Rodriguez’s story to the MLB

Casey Burton, Sports Editor

North Greenville University’s baseball team has gotten quite the amount of traction in the past few years, from having multiple winning seasons to winning a national championship. But as of lately, the team’s players have been the new talk of the community for being drafted into the MLB.

Michael “Nightmare” Rodriguez, redshirt Junior baseball player, has been one of the two players selected in the MLB draft.

Rodriquez has been playing baseball for as long as he can remember. He started playing at three years old, which puts him at a total of 20 years of the sport.

“It was something I was born into, growing up around the competitive environment. When I was younger, I always wanted to grow up and play at the highest level, but sometimes I wish I could relive the days when I was 13 or 14 traveling with my dad to those travel ball tournaments”, Rodriguez said.

Baseball has been a constant passion in Rodriquez’s life, and his story is truly inspiring. His hard work and dedication throughout his childhood, teen years and now adulthood has brought him his highly deserved accomplishments and achievements.

“Winning a national championship is once in a lifetime only a rare group of individuals can experience. And that was definitely one of my biggest accomplishments”, Rodriguez said.

Amongst his success with winning titles such as being named the All-Conference Carolinas first team, NCBWA All-Southeast Region second team, and earning a national championship title; some may think he already had his, “I made it moment” …little did he know that he was about to get some of the best news that made all those years of training worth it.

“The day of the MLB draft was a roller coaster. It was phone calls left and right for two days straight, wondering if this next pick was going to be for me or not. Eventually, the San Francisco Giants took a chance on me while they are known for developing elite players. Thankfully, Landon Powell runs the program at NGU almost the same as a professional team, so it didn’t take much to adapt”, Rodriguez said.

Landon Powell, head baseball coach at NGU is known notoriously for his ability to push players and pass down his knowledge from his professional baseball playing days. He played pro for a few years, starting back in 2009. He has now dedicated his time to make sure his players become all they can be on and off the field. And because of this, players like Rodriguez and Jalen Vasquez can adapt well in the MLB.

“Playing professional baseball is a dream come true, words couldn’t describe the feeling. It took a lot of praying and trusting the plan that God laid out for me”, Rodriguez said.

Alongside Rodriguez, teammate Jalen Vasquez also got drafted into the MLB his junior season. This honorary mention is to showcase the hard work all the NGU baseball players put fourth and the good guidance given by coaches to help the boys carry on their career far.

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