McGrady and Winston: Big dreams or small chances?

Sam Isdale/Sports Columnist

Sam Isdale/Sports Columnist

Everyone has a dream. Whether you want to start your own business, be a stay-at-home mom or become a professional athlete, I think everyone has a dream. Two athletes who may be dreaming a little too big are Tracy McGrady and Jameis Winston.

It’s undeniable that both men are gifted when it comes to certain sports, but the key word is certain. McGrady, retired seven-time NBA All-Star, wants to head down a similar path as Michael Jordan. Remember when MJ first retired from basketball and made the decision to give baseball a try? Well now McGrady thinks he wants to do the same thing.

McGrady wants to try pitching for the Sugar Land Skeeters of the independent Atlantic League. Roger Clemens pitched for the Skeeters a couple years ago and is currently mentoring McGrady. It might seem a little funny thinking about McGrady pursuing baseball, but the Skeeters are keeping their eyes on him.

“While the Atlantic League is considered the highest level of baseball outside of Major League Baseball, McGrady has demonstrated skill, determination and diligence during his training program at Constellation Field. We look forward to monitoring his progress,” the Skeeters released in a statement.

Some might think that making it to the NBA is a dream come true, but McGrady tweeted, “Been working out at Constellation Field w Sugar Land Skeeters. Working on my pitch. Childhood Dream coming true.” It’s admirable that he’s pursuing another dream, but I’d be pretty surprised to see anything come from it. Then again, I could be wrong. Clemens did confirm that McGrady reached 90 mph on the radar gun. That’s impressive stuff.

Now, a dream that seems a little too good to be true is Jameis Winston’s. Someday Winston wants to play in both the NFL and the MLB. It is true that Florida State’s head football coach Jimbo Fisher allowed Winston to play baseball too, but as he continues his career as an athlete will his body allow him to perform well in both sports? If he was committed to an outfielder’s position while continuing to be a quarterback I’d say maybe. But if he wants to pitch and play quarterback, I really don’t think so.

What if he had the opportunity to do so and he was severely injured? If that happened, I would think it would screw up the chances of him competing in the other sport. I also can’t see why coaches would want to take the risk. It seems all the more risky because he is a quarterback. However, some don’t think his dream is impossible.

The Houston Rangers, for example, have been keeping in touch with Winston about playing in the MLB. Back in 2012, Winston was drafted by the Rangers in the 15th round, but then there was football.

“Our scouts raved about his personality and the winning feeling he has,” Rangers assistant general manager A.J. Preller told the Dallas News. “Jameis is the kind of guy that whatever he wants to do, run for political office or play pro baseball or whatever, he’s going to do.”

People say to dream big, but it’s too soon to tell whether McGrady’s or Winston’s dreams will come true. So my question remains. Are their dreams too far-fetched?

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