By Josh Greene
While Father’s Day is usually a date reserved to show dad your everlasting appreciation, D-backs first-round draft pick Trevor Bauer did one better earlier this week. The young right-hander got to show his father where he may be pitching one day, thanks to Tuesday’s introductory press conference at Chase Field.
“I’m so happy for Trevor,” Warren Bauer said. “He’s worked a lot to get where he is, and I’m just happy it looks like it will turn out. A lot of kids put effort into things, and they don’t pan out. Some get to live their dream, and he’s getting to live his. It’s been great watching him. We’re proud parents, but it’s not about us. It’s him who is on the field doing the heavy lifting. We’re just along for the ride.
“He takes it all in stride. He understands he needs to stay grounded in the fact you still need to go out there and produce results. It’s not a done deal. It feels like the finish line, but it’s really the beginning.”
Even at 4 years old, the future UCLA standout was a hot commodity for his neighborhood baseball team. Of course, back then it was because the team was always short on players.
“When he was little, Trevor showed an interest right away,” he added. “We had neighbors who were a few years older than him and liked playing baseball, so when they needed another guy, they’d come get him. Half the time he’d come home crying, because the bigger boys wouldn’t let him hit or whatever. He grew up having to compete against guys older than him, so he learned how to thrive in that environment and enjoy it after awhile. After he got old enough to understand, he learned that when you play against older guys, you will be the last man out.
“There was a point where we thought if he made the high school team and not warm the bench, that would be enough. Anything past that would be gravy. He had a good junior year, and UCLA got interested. It snowballed from there. At no point did you say this will turn into something bigger. You just tried to take each step as it came, and it came pretty rapidly. It was like a fire hydrant opening up. From high school to college, they put him on the mound right away, and he was successful right away. It just kept going.”
Even coming off all of his son’s collegiate success, the elder Bauer admits Trevor wasn’t the most athletic kid out on the diamond growing up. But, boy, have times changed.
“He’s very diligent and maximizes the ability he has,” Warren said. “He’s never what you would call an athlete growing up. He didn’t run fast or throw hard. He was a guy you’d look at and say, ‘He was alright.’ When you’re talented, you have the option of working hard or not. When you’re not, you don’t have any choice but to work hard. He was always the guy who had to work hard. When he did begin to blossom athletically in high school, he already had the work ethic to go with it and it followed him. He’s a hard working kid, and his success is a product of a lot of hard work.”