Inspiring journey to big leagues
By: John Barlow
| Posted: Wednesday, Feb 06, 2013 01:33 pm
It was an incredible story of perseverance and not many would have pushed on to reach their dream.
At the Dawgs’ banquet on Saturday the keynote speaker was Dawgs alum and Milwaukee Brewers pitcher Jim Henderson who discussed his gruelling journey to playing Major League Baseball.
I have known Jim for several years, but never once has he told me what he had to endure to make his dream of pitching in the big leagues comes true.
It is a story famed broadcaster Roy Firestone would love — tears, desire, helping hands and an unrelenting will.
Henderson enjoyed incredible success in the Brewers’ bullpen last season being the set-up man for fellow Canadian John Axford. He appeared in 36 games and finished with 40 strikeouts in 30 innings and a 3.52 ERA.
What you do not see among those stats were the 10 years he toiled in the minor leagues for teams like the Savannah Sand Gnats, Wisconsin Timber Rattlers and Brevard County Manatees.
These minor league are a long way from Miller Stadium.
Yet despite what seemed to be unsurmountable odds, injuries and the loss of his father, he simply would not give up.
He admitted there were many nights on long bus rides or in lonely hotels with only a few bucks in his pocket in the outbacks of minor league baseball he contemplated giving up his dream.
But he did not.
With his dedication and help from a just as dedicated support network of friends and family Henderson put his head down and pitched.
He pitched himself to his dream.
His is a story we should all remember, never give up on your dream — work for it.