On what turned out to be a picture-perfect Saturday, the Weatherford Kangaroos baseball team celebrated by retiring the jersey of one of their own and then hosting the annual long ball contest for its freshmen, JV and varsity teams.
Former WHS baseball player Colt Hynes was on hand to accept his No. 11 jersey, which was retired by the team. Hynes, a 2003 graduate, posted a 0.97 ERA his senior year for the Roos as a left-handed pitcher and went on to play for Texas Tech University.
After being drafted by the San Diego Padres in 2007, Hynes made his major league baseball debut for the club in 2013, appearing in 22 games out of the bullpen. Since that time, he has been in the Cleveland Indians and Los Angeles Dodgers organizations before recently being acquired by the Toronto Blue Jays. Hynes will report to spring training with the Blue Jays in Dunedin, Fla., next month.
Hynes’ jersey is only the second retired by Weatherford High School. In 2012, the program retired the jersey of Baltimore Orioles closer Zach Britton, a 2006 graduate.
“It’s cool; it’s nice and it’s an honor that we have the opportunity to do this,” Hynes said of the ceremony. “A lot of schools let it go by the wayside but baseball is really important to the community here no matter who the coach has been.”
When asked to offer advice to the team on what got him to where he is, Hynes mentioned that endurance is what it takes.
“A lot of people talk about how hard it is to get through a lot of things but, for me, [baseball] was what I wanted to do...there was no other option,” he said. “I wasn’t always the biggest, I wasn’t always the fastest and I never was the strongest and I’m still not and I don’t throw the hardest but there was a dream when I was a little kid that I wanted to achieve and I wasn’t going to let it not happen.”
He added that whatever the boys wanted to do in life, whether it be baseball or something else, it is achievable.
“All it takes is a little bit of hard work and determination and a little perseverance because there is going to be adversity along the way; you can’t expect your life to be perfect,” Hynes said. “But it’s not what happens to you, it’s how you react to it. It’s real easy to quit but not a lot of people achieve their dreams because they do quit so don’t make that an option.”
Hynes also thanked his mother and father, who both were in attendance, as well as his wife. He also thanked head baseball coach Terry Massey and lauded the Kangaroo baseball program for always having quality players who have gone on to have success in MLB.
“I wish I had the numbers but ever since Zach Britton got drafted in 2006, every single year except one, someone has been drafted to an MLB team,” Hynes said. “So if you guys don’t think you’re part of something special, you are, and people know about Weatherford High School baseball so be proud about it and respect it and the hard work people put in to make it what it is.”
Richard Scoggin, WISD Executive Director of Athletics, said Hynes has the “pride” of being a Kangaroo and that the athletes could learn something from that.
“You always come back and I appreciate that,” Scoggin said to Hynes. “Guys, that’s a lesson you can learn. When you’re here, you say ‘Yeah, I wish I was gone’ but when you’re gone, remember what you had and that’s Kangaroo pride; never let it go.”
On Feb. 19, the Season Opening Banquet will be held in the WHS Cafeteria beginning at 6:30 p.m.
Fans will have an opportunity to meet the teams and players for the upcoming 2015 baseball season. There will also be a live action with many items such as hunts, Texas Rangers tickets, household items, baseball memorabilia, etc.
Melissa Winn, 817-594-9902, Ext. 104