on August 1, 2008 by in Uncategorized, Comments (0)

Former Daniel catcher Clark not done with baseball yet

EASLEY — When Jerad Clark ran onto the field for the “Thunder in the Outfield” opening ceremonies at the Big League World Series last Friday in Easley, the South Carolina District 1 catcher had one of those perfect moments that stretched far beyond the realm of baseball.

“It was probably one of the greatest feelings in my life,” he said. “I just had cold chills running down my back running out there and playing.”

It was a telling moment for the recently graduated Daniel High School product, who has been around the game for as long as he can remember.

But with his high school career now in the rearview mirror, and no guarantees exactly how much he’ll be able to play during college, Clark is far from ready to hang up his bat and tuck away his glove in the foreseeable future.

As he prepares to enter Clemson University later this month, Clark is hoping to catch on with the school’s club baseball team after turning down several scholarship offers from smaller schools because of his desire to major in a branch of agriculture.

And with that, he’s hoping to stay sharp and return to the Big League World Series next year, which his manager Gregg Powell said would be a challenge to accomplish without staying in the game in some way following high school.

“They need to try to get into some type of college situation because it’s tough on kids not to play and come back into this event,” Powell said. “They can get out of shape real quick, so we’re hoping he can do something in the off-season.”

If Clark does manage to catch on with the Clemson club team, and make the Big League team during tryouts in January, Powell would gladly welcome him back after what he has seen during this year’s event.

“He’s a good guy, and he’s a team leader on the bench,” he said. “He does whatever he needs to do, and he’s been a really good person to have on this team.”

Just before his current stint with the Big League World Series team, Clark had a strong season in helping Daniel to the postseason and a .500 record, which had been hard to come by in Clark’s previous four years with the team.

And on top of those accomplishments, Clark, along with Britt Alexander, became the first two Daniel players to ever make the Big League World Series team, which is something Clark said he would always cherish.

“It’s an honor being one of the first two players from Daniel High School to come out and play on the Big League team,” he said. “Hopefully some of the future Daniel players will come out and try to follow in our footsteps and keep it going.”

In addition to trying to play club ball during college, Clark will also be playing with a team in the fall coached by Jay Reames.

And at the absolute least, Clark plans on finding at least a team to work out with to stay sharp for a chance to rejoin the Big League World Series team next season, as he wants nothing more than to be out on field doing what he loves best.

“I’m definitely going to try to be back next year,” he said. “I’m going to come back and strive to win and do my best.”

Big League World Series

Thursday’s results

Canada vs. Germany, postponed until 10 a.m. today

Puerto Rico vs. Dominican Republic, cancelled

South (S.C. District 7) 2, Central (Michigan District 9) 1

Friday’s games

Canada vs. Germany, 10 a.m.

International semifinal — Puerto Rico vs. Dominican Republic, 4 p.m.

U.S. Semifinal — West (California) vs. South (S.C. District 7), 7:30 p.m.

Notes: Little League International made the decision to cancel the Puerto Rice-Dominican Republic game based on the fact that both teams are 3-0 and will play today in the international championship game no matter the outcome of Thursday’s game…The host team, South Carolina District 1, was eliminated from the tournament by virtue of the South’s victory over the Central on Thursday night.