We had been talking about this project for a while by the time it rolled around. With two team members who know a lot about baseball, Cal Poly athletes being in the draft and the connections that our team had access to, doing a story on our Mustangs making it the MLB 2018 draft was calling our name.
“As a softball player and baseball fanatic I was stoked to work on this assignment. It was fun to reach out to family and old coaches of Alex McKenna and learn more about his baseball career,” Alejandra Garcia said.
Garcia was in charge of our group’s interactivity section and commented on our change in focus saying, “I easily planned out my interactive components but had to switch it up a little once we realized all of our pieces were centered around McKenna. The switch required a lot of extra research but all in all it was a great learning experience and fun to put together.”
One of the most rewarding aspects of this project was learning more about the MLB draft and McKenna’s passion for baseball. Interviewing McKenna gave me a new perspective on baseball. While I know the game, listening to someone who has dedicated hours on end to it is a whole other story.
When we asked him about what it feels like to step on the field McKenna said “It’s the best. Just competing is what I like to do the most. When you get to play however many games you play during the year it can get kinda long but you’re playing with some of your best friends on the team and just that is what I look forward to the most when I show up to the field every day.”
Jessica Frantzides was in charge of the audio and visual facets of our final project and spoke to this side of our story.
“I went into this knowing nothing about baseball but came out knowing things beyond just the game. Learning about the drafting process and working with Alex was really cool,” Frantzides said.
While I grew up with baseball, I found myself in the same boat as Frantzides during this project. Not only was it fun learning more about the game, but it was also exciting to reach out and work with someone who is headed for the major leagues.
Frantzides commented on this aspect too saying, “now I can say I’ve spoken to a professional athlete, something I never would’ve thought would happen since I don’t enjoy sports.”
While there were some challenges with this final story, overall the experience was a fun and memorable one. Lauren Pluim, author of the article for our project, originally suggested back in April that we focus one of our projects on baseball and I’m glad we followed through with her idea.
“I think that this story was easier than the others for me because of my familiarity with baseball. Some of the challenges that came up had to do with sources not getting back to me. Overall however, I had a good experience and really enjoyed this story, ” Pluim said.
Covering this topic gave us either new insight into baseball and or a in-depth look into the time and dedication it takes to make it to the MLB. This project was not only a learning experience, but one that I think we can all look back on with fondness.