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Warrior Stories

Miami Marlins
Ray Ray came to the VMArlins in July to find a place to go to college.  He had attended the College of Albermarle in 2014-2015
but the program folded at the end of the spring.  Ray Ray came to the VMArlins with a great spirit and dedication to playing on a daily basis.  He had a very even keel in his approach, a good glove, good bat, and great arm.  At the end of the season Raymond returned to the Dominican Republic and continued to train for his personal development.  On November 11, 2015, the Miami Marlins offered him a contract after watching him perform in the fall. Now Ray Ray is clearly living his dream and is very very honored to be in a place that he never expected a few months ago.  They will play him at shortstop and at the perfect age of 18 he could have a very promising journey.  Congrads big RAY RAY!!

Baltimore Orioles

Zeke McGranahan only played a few innings in HS. He was a catcher with great athletic skills but very challenging team dynamics limited his play.  During a showcase game Coach Fulton suggested he pitch an inning or two.  After hitting 94 on his first outing Coach Fulton convince Zeke he could pitch for a long time.  However, in his senior year of high school he experienced even more challenging team dynamics with Zeke not pitching an inning!!

Upon graduation, Zeke went to Tusculum College as a walk on.  His talents were noticed by a new group of baseball men and Zeke started finding his way to the mound over and over again.  Zeke became a starter for the Tusculum team and became a great force on the mound.  Zeke transferred to Gwinnett College for his senior year of competition and was the workhorse out of the bullpen.  His team went onto the Collegiate Regionals and Zeke battled for his team to the end.  In June of 2013 Zeke was selected by the Baltimore Orioles in the 23rd round.

As of 2016 Zeke McGranahan is the only one from his high school playing professional baseball and he has proven that the challenges of life come in all forms, shapes, and sizes.  The ability to adapt improvise and overcome is critical to those who fight to follow their dream.  Zeke is living his dream, fighting the good fight, and showing the future student-athletes to never let anyone take away your joy of playing.

Kagawa-Gun Guyners

Wes Edwards was washed up at the age of 27 until the 
Japanese saw him pitch in the fall of 2014.  Yep, Wes Edwards is one of the best built, 6'4" 190 pound athlete with good fastball speed and unhitable spliter command.  Scouts loved him, scouts came to visit and watch him, but no one in affiliated baseball would take a chance because he did not fit the formula of signing free agents after reaching a certain age.  Wes would not give up.  He would train and workout and stay focused on improving his game.  In the late fall of 2014 Wes received an invitation to go to Fort Lauderdale, Florida and tryout for the Japanese professional league.  

Wes went and did his thing.  By the end of the day Wes had impressed his future employees and within a month Wes was on a plane to Japan to pitch professional with the Kagawa-Gun Guyners.  In 2015 he put up a great season with a record of 8-1!  We are proud of the true Warrior who stayed strong in heart and spirit as he worked through the obstacles on his journey.  

Longwood University

Out of shape and lost, Tyler Wirsu, comes to camp 
and ends up at Division One, Longwood University. This is it in a nutshell for Tyler until one of the WBL Scouts, John Sisson from Georgia recommended that Tyler go to Virginia and work with the VMarlins and the WBL.  Tyler accepted John's challenge and went in the summer of 2015 to Danville, Virginia to work with the program.  He found his spirit and his skill sets were rusty but if also found a new spark to ignite his game.   

Tyler had played two years at Gordon State Community College in Georgia and had completed his associates degree.  He played and performed but did not have a network developing opportunities for him to further his career.  On a Saturday in June, Tyler had a great dreamlike outing in front of scouts at Averett University.  He faced five batters and mowed them down with great command and power.  Longwood and others were very excited and started the process of recruiting him to fill their rotational needs. In the meantime, Tyler went on to finish the collegiate season with the West Virginia Miners and completed a strong summer season.  Tyler's passion to be a warrior on the field and to be a great team member revitalized with the VMarlins and he is now contributing to the Lancers of Longwood University.

                                 Oz Sailors
          University of Maine at Presque Isle

Oz Sailors is truly a heroic sportsperson who is serving as a strong example of Positive Warrior Living. This young lady defied the odds over and over again through her high school and college career.  Always told that she could not compete, or contribute on the baseball field she continued to push forward and put her goods on the line.

Oz has been one of the very very few women to compete in Men's collegiate baseball.  She played four years at the University of Maine at Presque Isle serving as a captain her senior year. Oz Sailor is one of FIVE FEMALE COLLEGIATE BASEBALL PLAYERS in Cooperstown. She signed with the VMarlins in May and came to Virginia in July to have very successful outings on the mound as short relief.  Striking out 14 players in her professional debut was outstanding. However, the real impact she had was her positive spirit that fueled others to be the best they could be. 

She is a world traveler and ambassador of baseball development as she leads many international teams of women's baseball development.  Korea, Australia, Guam, Canada, and Venezuela are the countries she has played/coached for and will continue to develop in her career.

    Shawn Clowers
 Milwaukee Brewers

A Quiet Warrior with the Passion of a Lion are the best descriptive terms for Shawn Clowers.  This new member of the Brew Crew of Pitchers spent many a summer season with the VMarlins through his high school and collegiate years of competition.  He played hard, supported his team and supported himself as he worked and worked and worked jobs during the summer.
Shawn was a true student/athlete at Tunstall High School and carried on the tradition at Liberty University.  He worked very hard to make the transition from High School Competitor to the Collegiate level and really shinned his junior and senior seasons with the Flames.  

                              Terrell Joyce
                              Houston Astros

He Cannot hit a Curve Ball!!!!  This was the high school report of the local scouts in the Virginia Beach Area of Baseball.  And so this powerful student-athlete missed out on the draft his senior year.  And off to college he went.  Hundreds of bats and many homeruns later Terrell took his All Florida Talents to the Houston Astros in the 2008 Draft.  

A super talented individual who started late with baseball found many obstacles along his way in the world of baseball.  He was not a local talent, he was a late bloomer, and he had raw power at the plate and on the defensive corner that had not been networked properly.  But we knew he could play.  When we saw him hit 8 out of 10 home-runs at Greensboro Grasshopper Stadium at a combine we made sure to have a talk with Terrell and his family.  In the next year of his high school development Terrell played a few games with the VMarlins and took some extra tutoring in his game. He became a force his senior year in high school and then went on to JUCO College before his talents were recognized professionally.  

                               Daiki Matsui
                       Kochi Fighting Dogs

Daiki Matsui was a pleasant surprise to the WBL Professional League in 2015.  Great command of his game, great competitor, and great great eater of food.  Daiki not only can pitch with the best of them but he can out eat most warriors.  Daiki has two goals in life play baseball and eat.  

Daiki made a last minute phone call to the VMArlins from Japan to join the team in July.  He jumped on and off the plane to quickly take the mound and attack the batters of the day.  Very quiet, very focused and a true gentleman on and off the field.  It was a joy watching him work.  He brought excitement and love to the game that infected all who went to battle with him.  

He returned to Japan and currently pitches for the professional league team of the Kochi Fighting Dogs.  When he returns we naturally will have him on the mound, (he has a great bat and hits for power,) but we know also to have plenty of snacks around the dugout this time around!!! 

MANY More to Come........Hang Tight!!
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