David Wynn, II: God’s Timing
From A Players Eyes
As I got myself prepared to enter Mets 2012 extended spring training, my uncle Mike gave me a reminder to go in there and pitch like I had a chip on my shoulder.
As I entered into this new chapter in my life, I was experiencing a good camp and after an outing, I got pulled over by one of the head guys and he mentioned that I resembled Cliff Lee.
It meant a lot because I was being noticed by one of the top guys. Later in camp the 2012 manager for Brooklyn Rich Donnelly, was walking by as we were shagging for batting practice. I wanted to let him know I was confident in my ability and I asked him, “How many lefty’s are you looking for in your staff? I plan on being one of them!”
As camp was winding down, I was walking towards the clubhouse, and John Mincone a former teammate, came out and told me with a huge smile on his face that we both were going to Brooklyn together. Man oh man, I felt on top of the world. With lots of excitement I called my family and mentioned the news.
After that year, I posted a 1.44 ERA in 26 innings. Walking by faith and looking back at how things played out, I couldn’t wait to return to spring training because I just knew being a lefty I would get promoted.
The following year I returned and was excited to see my old teammates and coaches and to pick up where I left off. Johnathan Hurst and Mark Valdez, who were the pitching coaches that I became really cool with, broke down the process. Now that I got my feet wet, I felt my name would surface after the year that I had.
I had different coaches working with me to improve my game and my mechanics. I felt as if they wanted to see me succeed since they were noticing me and taking time to work with me. Having this opportunity, I wanted to show them I was coachable and willing to practice in the game what we had worked on. BIG MISTAKE!
I had three of the worst outings of my time with the Mets. Three consecutive innings I heard, “ROLL IT.” My head was spinning, from having success to not even pitching like myself, was getting to my me mentally. The same coaches came up to me and asked me what was up and I’m not pitching like myself, and they wanted to move me up to Single A Port St. Lucie, but my outings weren’t what they expected.
I stated how I wanted to show them, I was coachable and incorporate the new mechanics they had me work on, but it just wasn’t working for me. Going back to speak with Coach Hurst, he mentioned its my career and that I should take little pieces from each one and make them my own because there will be people telling me to try different things but it is still my career.
I was feeling down that I didn’t even get promoted to Low A in Savannah after my first year. I was sent back to the Brooklyn to play with the cyclones and posted a 2.26 ERA. In 2014, feeling stronger and a better pitcher then I was the previous year, I attacked the off-season with a specific goal on what to work on. I felt like I got my feet wet and my name had surfaced and being a left handed pitcher, that would be my year. Then the unimaginable happen.
The New York Mets released me after the last couple of days of spring training and then I was released two more times in Independent ball. I was feeling lost and unsure of my abilities to play this game that I love. I was unsure of what to do. I called my uncle Mike who I always discussed baseball with and he told me to not give up.
Going from being a pro athlete and putting up good numbers to entering independent ball and being released after a couple of outings and then being left with little to no money, wasn’t a place I wanted to be in. I felt like maybe I took this baseball thing as far as I could take it and maybe it was time to start putting my degree to use.
I randomly checked my email and one day saw that I had an email from the Puerto Rican Double A League. I remember mentioning to a friend and ex-teammate Johnathan Clark that my mother was born in puerto rico, so I felt like it would be a great fit. But in 2014, there was a rule to only allow one pro per team, but fast-forward to 2016 and they opened it up so that teams could have 5-7 pro guys on their roster. I remember filling out the registration and submitting it thinking whatever happens, happens.
I received a call from three teams after my workout and feeling like a high schooler getting drafted. I chose to play for San Sebastian Patrulleros and 2017 my 2nd year with them and I at the posting of my story, I have an ERA of 0.96.
And continuing to Walk by Faith and Not by Sight.
~ David Wynn, II