If there’s just one thing that Zack Brown will bring to the major leagues it’s this: class.
This past week, I was fortunate enough to attend the Major League Baseball Draft party at Seymour High School’s hitting facility.
After meeting up with a handful of members in the community who attended, I took a seat by the corner — in position to take a photo of Brown for reaction shots once he got drafted.
As the draft rolled on, projected on a blank, white-washed wall, Brown saw his position dropping.
It was looking like Brown would go in the third round, if not very early in the fourth round.
But here we were, in the fifth round — where he eventually would hear his name called.
While his face was in his hands for a brief second in anxiety, Brown never lost his cool.
Calm and collected, unfazed.
In retrospect, that’s an incredibly difficult situation to deal with for a college kid — knowing that every pick ahead of him is guaranteed more money.
However, despite the situation, Brown did something that you wouldn’t expect from a guy about to get an MLB contract offer.
Throughout the entire draft, even through the frustrations, kids approached Brown with miniature baseball bats and balls.
They asked for Brown’s signature, and he didn’t turn down a single one.
That’s the guy the Milwaukee Brewers organization is getting.
Instead of going to an exotic location, or hanging with his college friends, Brown spent the week leading up to the draft at Seymour’s baseball camp.
He doesn’t seem to have forgotten where he’s from, and wants to give back to Seymour in any way he can.
This past winter, when I first met Brown at a pitching camp, I wasn’t sure what I was going to get.
I prepared for the worst — I’ve met a lot of NCAA Division I athletes with horrible attitudes and senses of entitlement.
It couldn’t have gone much differently than I anticipated.
When I spoke with Owls baseball coach Jeremy Richey, he told me I was dealing with a quality guy — Brown was a kid who he respected tremendously.
An athlete who came home on breaks and played ball with Richey’s kids.
Who goes to Brown Elementary and reads to the students on winter break.
I asked Brown what he thought of the top 25 pre-draft ranking during that interview, and what he said floored me.
He had no idea about the rankings, and said he was taking it with a grain with salt.
It was no big deal, and that’s what sets Brown apart.
In an age where bad behavior is often rewarded, Brown stands against it and holds to his principles.
Tuesday, Brown officially put pen to paper to join the Brewers.
Whatever happens to Brown professionally, he will still represent the community to a high standard.
Jordan Morey is the sports editor for The Tribune. Send comments to firstname.lastname@example.org.