Everyone assumed it was a joke when aging NBA star Tracy McGrady decided to retire from the sport that made him famous in order to pursue his dream of playing professional baseball. However, it is Grady who seems to have the last laugh as he clinched a spot on the opening day roster of the Sugar Land Skeeters.
McGrady wasn’t flawless on the mound by any means, but he showed enough progress as a pitcher in spring training to give the team hope that he can blossom into a worthy asset. In any case, McGrady is grateful for the opportunity that will allow him to take his dream a step further.
“It’s an honor to be a part of this club,” McGrady said, according to ESPN. “To be a part of the team means everything to me and it’s a dream come true. I look forward to coming to the ballpark not only to play the game, but to be in the clubhouse building camaraderie with these guys. I am excited to start the journey we’re going to take this season.”
The Skeeters are a member of the Atlantic League of Professional Baseball, which has no affiliation with Major League Baseball. The team is the first to play outside of the Northeast megalopolis. In fact, it is a part of a growing Western division, which is expected to contain at least four other teams in the near future.
The 35-year-old McGrady has been training hard in order to become a pitcher. The work paid off as he threw nine of his 15 pitches for strikes in one inning during an exhibition game last week. No word yet on when he will make his first appearance in the regular season, which began on Thursday.