Tyler Austin – Yankees Prospect: A Baseball Story of Courage; Feature Interview by Lori Martini
Friday August 10th, 2012
Lori Martini (Baseball Writer- and @LoriMartini on Twitter): Baseball is my life. Heck, if I could get paid for playing softball- I would have the greatest, happiest job in the world! I’m sure anyone who has played the game feels the same way. So many players go through the system and either get overlooked, marred by injuries or simply can’t perform up to major league standards. Aside from all of that, there are the politics and life in general that can get in the way of success.
So when we see athletes like Lance Armstrong and Mike Lowell, not only overcoming testicular cancer, but rising to the top of their respective sport, one cannot help but feel completely inspired. These guys did NOT give up and in fact, they fought harder than anyone. Given the success they have experienced, the hard work certainly paid off. Which brings me to a very special ballplayer and today’s feature subject, Tyler Austin.
Tyler was born in Macon, GA to Kim and Chris Austin and has two younger brothers, Dylan and Kyle who also play ball. At age 17, Tyler was diagnosed with testicular cancer during the MLB Draft.
Knowing that this can be life threatening, the Austin family also thought it could hurt his chances of being drafted. Then something special happened. They kept praying and BELIEVING that everything was going to be OK with him and that Tyler would get his shot. Not only did Tyler get drafted in the 13th round, but also by his favorite team, the NY Yankees. He played for the Penn League Short A Ball in 2011 and was quickly promoted to the Charleston River Dogs in 2012. Most recently, Tyler has played with the High A – Tampa Yankees.
Just reading his stats alone, this kid has incredible abilities on the field. But he is also sweet, humble, grateful and works incredibly hard. After meeting his family, I can see where he gets it from. Tyler is also getting involved with the LiveStrong – the Lance Armstrong Foundation to help others become aware and help in the fight against cancer. I saw Tyler play this past weekend and the kid went 3-4 with 2 doubles that almost went out of the park! He also gunned the ball from RF that was a strike to the catcher to prevent the runner at 3rd from tagging and scoring. I can tell you that Tyler Austin has a very high baseball-IQ, especially on the bases. He signs for everyone that asks him for an autograph and won’t leave until he’s done. Tyler is exactly the type of ballplayer that baseball needs.
I’m a Mets fan, but I am also a Tyler Austin fan. I don’t care what team he plays for, though I wouldn’t mind him becoming a member of the Mets one day. I love his work ethic, his drive and his kindness. I truly believe he will be in the majors sometime soon. In fact, I wouldn’t be surprised if he’s a September call-up next season. Yes, he is that talented.
My other love is music and I wrote a song “Believe” initially for the Mets, though it is an inspirational anthem that can cross-over not only other sports, but Top-40 and other avenues as well. I had written an article about how Baseball and Music coincide and how certain songs pump players up when they step up to the plate. I had the miracle of Justin Turner asking permission to use my song ”Believe” as his walk-up song. My feet didn’t touch the ground the rest of the day and it has been surreal thereafter. My music has taken off and has inspired so many young girls with “I’m Not Perfect.” Even when I’m not trying to get my music to somehow coincide with sports, it ends up that way. ”Beautiful” became the promo trailer for USA Network’s Necessary Roughness.
Through the web, social media and more specifically, twitterverse it has been amazing to interact with those I’ve inspired and who in return inspire me. I had received a tweet from @austinmom03 saying that she loved my song “Believe” and that someday her son would walk up to it also. I was honored and wasn’t sure how old her son was, but I had noticed that she had a Yankees logo as her avatar. I decided to look at her profile and her bio stated: “Mother of 3 sons and 1 of them is a NY Yankee.” I was FLOORED to say the least. I immediately sent Kim 2 CDs and they loved my music. My song “Believe” is now Tyler’s walk-up song. I am not only grateful for Kim finding me on twitter, but I also made a great friend with a great heart who raised her children to be the same. I wish there were more people in this world like the Austins. They won me over with their integrity and their continual support. I BELIEVE everything happens for a reason and that there’s going to be greater things to come. Keep an eye out because Tyler Austin is going to be on the big stage with his name in lights very soon.
*** Thank you to Baseball Writer Lori Martini, for preparing today’s feature on MLB reports. To learn more about Lori Martini and her story click here, you can also follow Lori on Twitter (@shortfilmcaught, or @lorimartini) and check out her song ‘Believe’ here on Youtube, (Formerly Justin Turner ‘s walkup song for the Mets and was recently heard on VH1′s House of Consignment.)***
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Posted on August 10, 2012, in Interviews with MLB Stars and tagged baseball interview, Believe, charleston river dogs, justin turner, lance armstrong, Lori Martini, macon ga, Mike Lowell, ny mets, NY Yankees, penn league, tyler austin. Bookmark the permalink. 3 Comments.