|Temper talk of Schuster|
Written by Rob Swift (Contact & Archive) on April 23, 2009
By now, anyone who is a fan of baseball is aware of the fact that Patrick Schuster, of Mitchell High School in New Port Richey, Fla., threw his fourth consecutive no hitter.Â This improbable feat broke the Florida state record and is two away from tying the national record.Â No matter what happens from this point on, Schuster is immortal in prep baseball.
However, let's keep it in perspective folks; this is not Carl Hubbell striking out Ruth, Gehrig, Foxx, Simmons, and Cronin in the first two innings of the 1934 All-Star game.Â This is a lanky kid from the Tampa area striking out high school juniors and seniors.
Don't get me wrong, give Schuster all the credit in the world, he deserves it. However, let's keep it tempered. I have heard that he is being labeled as the next Nolan Ryan; he is not the next Nolan Ryan. It is wrong to disrespect Nolan Ryan like that and even worse to set the kid up for failure in that manner.
He has a double kick thing going on in his delivery, he throws from an odd motion and is all arm.Â Additionally, he is pitching once a week for seven innings against 16 and 17 year olds.Â
He is generally ranked as the 75th best prep prospect; prior to his four no-hitters, he was around 190th.Â He might be a late second- or early third-round pick in the upcoming MLB draft, and just in case, has also signed an NLI to go to the University of Florida. The kid is covered.Â
So let him enjoy his 15 minutes for right now, and then in a few years, when he is ready and physically able, we can all burden him with unachievable expectations. I thought one of the nice things about this story was it caught me by surprise. Keep an eye on what happens when he gets lit up in his next game or even throws "just" a three-hit shutout; it will be "so much for Schuster," and that certainly will be a shame.