Almost exactly one month ago, Johnny Manziel was drafted as a quarterback by the Cleveland Browns with the 22nd overall pick in the NFL Draft, and then came the San Diego Padres. With the 837th overall pick in this year’s MLB Draft, the Padres selected a middle infielder. Yes, Manziel.
The same guy who broke record after record at Texas A&M with his arm and legs; the same guy who won the most prestigious award in college football; the same guy who catches crap left and right for living his life — he has an option to pursue baseball if this whole NFL thing doesn’t pan out.
What a joke. Manziel played three years of high school baseball and skipped out on his senior season in order to graduate early and keep the focus on football. His junior season was quite successful: a .416 batting average with seven home runs and 35 RBIs. He even talked to Texas A&M baseball coaches about taking the diamond in college, but after locking down the starting quarterback job, baseball became an afterthought.
I’m not sure what the Padres are hoping to accomplish by drafting Manziel. If they think he’s going to be a bust in the NFL, I think they’re blatantly wrong. No, I’m not saying Manziel is going to be a top-tier quarterback, but even if he can’t maintain a starting job on a team, are you telling me a kid with that athleticism doesn’t find a role? Not to mention the amount of publicity he carries with him. Manziel is going to be in the NFL for a long time. Sorry, Padre. Er, Padres.
Manziel’s last real connection to the game of baseball is going to be the ceremonial first pitch.