Alumni Update: Mitchell Beaudreau
Mitchell Beaudreau is a catcher at Newman University (NCAA DII), in Wichita, Kansas. He played for two years at Frank Phillips College, in arguably the top junior college baseball conferences in the United States, The North Texas Junior College Athletic Conference. Last year Beaudreau was the Newman University Jets starting catcher and hit .301 with 5 doubles, 6 triiples, and a team leading 32 RBI. Mitchell is ready to make his senior season debut after a tough, lengthy rehabiliation after breaking his ankle in the fall. Beaudreau, who hails from Dartmouth, Nova Scotia played for the Prospects Academy for two years, and was a key member of the inauguaral 2009-10 team.
You were a part of that inaugural Prospects Academy team, which was a pretty special group that won a lot, is there one memory that's your favourite?
Definitely beating Okotoks in their own tournament. They hated us and we hated them, it's still my favourite rivalry. Nothing was more sweet than celebrating on their own field. I think about that game all the time.
It must be crazy to think that was five years ago now. Being in your senior year and looking back on your college career, what advice would you give to the players in the academy now to help them succeed like you have?
Don't be afraid to to mess up. I mess up all the time, but it never makes me scared to mess up again. No one remembers the guy that plays safe. Just realize the type of player you are and and always buy into what the coaches are telling you. You may not always agree with it but in the end it's always for the greater good.
You went the junior college route, before moving on to an NCAA four-year school. A lot of high school kids are unsure of what path to take, and could you give any insight on the subject?
I would advise almost anyone to go to juco out of high school. At juco you are all in the dorm, and you get as close as you possibly can. It's an easier transition to make from high school. The competition is just as competitive as well. I faced many draft picks my two years at junior college and it is a good challenge and will help with the transition of going to a bigger university later on.
You have had a lot of success in college. What sort of adjustments did you have to make in order to make the jump from high school?
Pitchers are definitely more refined in college. A lot of them can throw 3-1 curves, 2-0 change-ups, that kind of thing, so everyone is more polished and the competitive level is more balanced. Some adjustments I made were just to stay short and you really have to do some scouting before each game to figure out how people are going to pitch you. Studying the game is much more important in college. You can't just go out and keep being successful without staying open to making a few changes. Talk to as many people as you can to learn.
You faced some serious adversity this year after breaking your ankle in the fall. Unfortunately, injuries are a part of playing this game and how have you been able to handle it?
Definitely the toughest thing I've had to do. It was very painful and just a long process to come back. There were several people telling me to redshirt and doctors saying I'd be out a long time. The main thing I did was just tried to keep telling myself positive things. At a certain point all you can do is be mentally tough and say, "screw the naysayers, I'm coming back early and I'm going to be just as good as before. You can't feel sorry for yourself, it's just a part of life and you've got to tough it out."
Well, anyone who knows you knew you'd be back early. Lastly, what stands out to you about your time with the Prospects Academy?
I would say just how close you get to everyone. I still talk to teammates from then all the time. I wasn't used to being around a team that often, so just the feeling of coming together as a family is something I'm always going to remember.
Well, we're all pulling for ya here at the Academy. Best of luck this year.
Thank you. I'm always looking at the academy news to see how you guys are doing. I wouldn't be anywhere without the academy so I'm always appreciative for all it's done for me.