No taming Wilde on the diamond
Special to the Post Independent
Glenwood Springs, CO Colorado
GLENWOOD SPRINGS, Colorado ” Have you seen Taylor Wilde lately?
The former Glenwood Springs’ High School baseball standout is making a name for himself in the Midwest. Wilde recently completed a breakout season at Taylor University. The returning senior has shown a marked improvement in almost every major statistical category.
After two years of seeing less than ample time out on the field, this former Demon has shown he can play. Not only can he play, but he can handle a bat and flash the leather.
The offseason shift to center field had no affect on Wilde, as his glove work was as steady as can be. His defensive prowess even earned him a Mid-Central Conference Gold Glove award.
That is what one error in 39 games gets you.
The job was never given to Taylor Wilde. He had to earn it.
Playing both corner spots his first two years, before winning back his natural position, Wilde noted that he “had to work for it, but that is where I want to be.”
At the plate, Wilde was raking all year, and that was no stroke of luck. The kid holds a .375 career batting average at the collegiate level.
While not a power hitter, Wilde is as consistent a contact guy as they come. In his third season, he reached base by way of a hit in 25 out of 65 at-bats. That is a .385 clip.
Not only was he solid all year, the outfielder caught fire near the end. He netted an outstanding seven hits in his final 16 plate appearances. This could be a snapshot of a promising final season.
Taylor University’s coaches and fans hope the hot play rolls over into next year. They will be happy to know that their centerfielder will not stand for regression. He’s working hard, and not just for himself.
“I want to become the best player I can be. It is not just for me. It is for my team. What I do during the summer will contribute to the team,” Wilde professed.
As a returning senior, Wilde is seen as being a major cog in the Trojan baseball machine. Taylor University is looking to their center fielder to provide senior leadership as well as impressive play.
This is OK with Taylor Wilde. If anyone is qualified to lead, it’s him.
This summer, the former GSHS star participated in the Athletes in Action program, a Christian-based organization that spreads the gospel while connecting through sport, in Nicaragua. The opportunity to travel, teach, and play baseball was not lost on the young man.
“The experience helped me to be a better leader. I can use that to help my younger teammates. I will be there if they are in need of guidance, or just someone to talk to,” Wilde said.
If you are searching for adjectives to describe Taylor Wilde, you might want to try on humble. It fits like your favorite, worn in baseball mitt.
What does Taylor Wilde want to do on the ball field?
Nothing heroic, but only to “do the little things … play good defense, have quality at-bats, and help the team win,”
Oh, and, “play [his] heart out.”
You do that, kid, and good things will happen.
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