Journeyman at shortstop
Senior infielder hops from team to team, lands at Texas A&M
Published: Friday, February 15, 2013
Updated: Friday, February 15, 2013 02:02
The road to College Station is more straightforward for some than for others. Mikey Reynolds required two years and two different schools — not to mention two chances to turn professional — to end up in Aggieland.
The senior shortstop grew up in Glendale, Arizona, far from the city limits of College Station. Despite being recruited by Texas A&M and head coach Rob Childress out of high school, he decided to accept a scholarship to play at St. Mary’s College of California. Childress had a clear role in mind for Reynolds: starting shortstop.
“We targeted [Reynolds] out of high school but he had already decided to go to St. Mary’s,” Childress said. “When you go out of state to recruit, it’s because you have a hole to fill. We wanted him to be our shortstop.”
Reynolds’ path to leadership of the 2013 A&M baseball team was anything but simple. The important thing for frequenters of Olsen Field, however, is that he’s here now.
“[Mikey] is a champ,” junior catcher Troy Stein said. “He’s always where he’s supposed to be. He tries to do everything the right way and younger guys catch on to that.”
During his one year at St. Mary’s, Reynolds played 44 games, starting 43 of them. He had a batting average of .256 with 15 runs batted in. At the end of that year, he decided that St. Mary’s was not the school for him. Transferring to another Division I school would mean he would have to sit out a year. He decided instead to enroll at Paradise Valley Community College in Phoenix, Arizona.
“I didn’t like the baseball at St. Mary’s,” Reynolds said. “I wasn’t having fun there and Paradise was a temporary stop so I didn’t have to sit out a year between Division I schools. It was also closer to home so that was a plus.”
After his one season at Paradise Valley — during which he had a .389 batting average with 28 doubles and 29 stolen bases — Reynolds was drafted in the 30th round of the 2011 MLB Draft. Reynolds had every intention of going pro, but Childress managed to persuade him to play for A&M instead.
Reynolds had seemingly no problems transitioning to his third school in as many years. During the 2012 season, he recorded a .306 average with 12 doubles and 23 runs batted in. The only thing he had to adjust to was the size of Olsen Field.
“I took a visit here and it was the biggest stadium I had ever seen,” Reynolds said. “That was before all the renovations to the field, too.”
At the end of his first season as an Aggie, Reynolds was selected in the MLB draft for the second time, this time in the 20th round by his favorite team growing up, the New York Yankees. Once again, he was set to begin his professional career as a baseball player, but a stroke of bad luck prevented him from making that happen.
“I had agreed to a deal with the Yankees but I failed the physical,” Reynolds said. “I had a fractured bone in my arm. After they found that out they offered me less money so I decided to stay.”
Tt may have been bad luck from Reynolds’ perspective, but for the Aggie baseball team it was a blessing to have him stay. Reynolds is one of three returning seniors on a team filled with freshmen and sophomores and is expected to bat at the top of the order this year. His experience and leadership are going to be a vital part for the team going forward into their inaugural SEC season.
Reynolds was born with baseball in his blood. His father, David, played baseball for two years at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte and had him playing ball when he was only four years old. His path to Aggieland has taken him from Arizona to California and back before making his final stop here in Texas. He has passed up the MLB twice and is known for being a catalyst in the Aggie lineup — in 2013, he hopes to be known as a leader.