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Never out of the spotlight

Free Press/Greg Reed Yavapai College's Shane Keough swings at a pitch during a game in the NCAA Junior College World Series in Grand Junction earlier this week. Keough leads an interesting life outside of baseball, starring in the reality television show "The Real House Wives of Orange County."
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When Keith Gossage hit three home runs in Tuesday’s 9-2 victory over Butler Community College, the Yavapai first baseman was surrounded by media after the game.Shane Keough could care less if his teammate got all the credit – and it wasn’t just because the Roughriders have a team attitude. You see, Keough gets enough attention when he’s not on the field.He gets it wherever he goes.”Hey, you’re Shane. I’ve seen you on TV,” people say.He gets it in airports, in malls, at restaurants.Keough and his family are on a reality television show based on his mother and four other women and their families, “The Real Housewives of Orange County,” which runs on the BRAVO Network.

“It’s something we never thought would be a big deal,” Keough said. “But one thing led to another and it turned into a big thing.”The first season saw Shane as a senior in high school, pondering being drafted versus playing college ball. He ended up at Yavapai College in Prescott, Ariz., and the Roughriders stormed their way to the JUCO World Series this year with Keough in center field.The reality show is based on housewives who live in a gated Orange County, Southern California community, Coto de Caza, wedged between Mission Viejo and Laguna Niguel, south of Rancho Santa Margarita. Fame is nothing new to the Keough family. Shane’s mother, Jeana, was a Playboy Playmate – Miss November, 1980. Her “past life,” as she calls it, was as an actress, with work you’d recognize in an appearance on the sitcom “Cheers” and the driver of the vehicle in all five ZZ Top music videos.She married a Major League Baseball player from a baseball family. Shane’s father Matt played for the Oakland Athletics in the early 1980s before playing for the New York Yankees and then spending four years in Japan.Shane’s great-uncle also played for the Athletics. And Shane’s grandfather did time in the bigs, but not for the Athletics.It’s no wonder Shane is under control with Oakland.The A’s may sign Shane as soon as next week after JUCO. If not, he’ll check his chances in the draft again. If things don’t shake out the way he hopes, he’ll be back in center field for Yavapai next year.His Roughrider teammates tuned into BRAVO every Tuesday night this past year.

“They all watched it every day when the season was on and they’d give me crap the next day,” Keough laughed.Jeana said her son didn’t want to be on TV.”I was an actress in my past life, so it’s no big deal for me,” she said. “And my daughter is an actress, too.”But for Shane, it was always annoying. There would be cameras there and they’d ask Shane, ‘Hey, do that move again,’ and he’d look at them and say, ‘I’m in a game,’ or ‘I’m at a tryout.'””I’ve been around it for a long time, so it’s something I’ve gotten used to,” Shane said. “It’s been fun.”Fun and funny. And annoying, having your life on display for the nation to watch you fight with your siblings or argue with your mother.That’s why Jeana likes the show, though.”It’s addicting, I can’t believe how much people get into it, how many people follow it,” she said.The name correctly suggests the show makes fun of the popular series “Desperate Housewives.”



“Everybody loved ‘Desperate Housewives’ at first, but it’s gotten ridiculous,” Jeana said. “People burning other people’s houses, sleeping with their neighbors…”This is real drama. These are real issues kids having drug problems, struggling with their grades.”Shane and his Roughrider teammates struggled Sunday night, all right.Yavapai dropped its JUCO opener to Wallace State Community College. But the Roughriders bounced back Tuesday, thumping Butler 9-2 in an elimination game.”Today was a little bit of Yavapai baseball,” Shane said as the reporters and cameras surrounded Gossage.This is what the Roughriders – and many who were calling them the most talented team in the field – were expecting.Shane left the team hotel and was hanging at the pool at Jeana’s hotel on Monday. They overheard some other folks talking.”They were saying how overhyped we were,” he said. “We finally showed the ball we can play.”On Wednesday, Yavapai dished out another impressive performance, 10-run ruling Potomac State 13-3 in six innings and will now face the Walters State/Wallace State loser today at 3 p.m.


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