Hirsch rocks the south

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, August 23, 2005

Last May, Will Hirsch drove in the run that sent Nansemond River to Eastern Region baseball competition for the first time of the millennium. He hasn’t stopped playing since.

About a week before school ended (his hit helped the Warriors defeat Deep Creek in the playoffs, and a loss to Great Bridge in the tournament final left them in second for the season), Hirsch headed south to take part in the Perfect Game Academy Showcase in Fort Myers, Fla. It’s an event for the top high schoolers in the country that have at least a 3.0 grade point average.

Hirsch pitched and played third base for two days before coming home. But he didn’t get a chance to kick back; as soon as he got back to Suffolk, a friend called and said he’d been picked for the Perfect Game Nationals, in which the top Showcase players are showcased. Hirsch hopped in a car, drove back to Florida, and played at Georgia Tech and Turner Field, the home of the Atlanta Braves.

Email newsletter signup

&uot;That was really cool, being able to stand on a mound that pros pitch from,&uot; he said.

After another mini-vacation (this one went about four days), he and the rest of a Richmond-based AAU team went down to Georgia for the World Wood Bat tournament. They finished in the top 16 in the nation.

About a week later, he was back in Georgia, playing in the Team One Showcase, with most of the same players from the Nationals event.

Finally, he’s back in Suffolk – at least, until the fall, when he’ll join the Tidewater Devil Rays, made up of the top players from the area.

&uot;I work out at a gym in Virginia Beach about every other day,&uot; he said. &uot;I come out here to Nansemond River and hit and throw with my teammates.

&uot;It’s just that I like to play baseball. A lot of people think it’s funny, but I don’t really like to watch games; I’d rather be playing. I’ve been doing really well and good things keep happening.&uot;

Hirsch, who committed verbally to play ball at Georgia Tech (he plans to study architecture), thinks they’ll continue to happen next season as he goes for his third All-District season.

&uot;I think this year will be our year to get past regionals (the team lost its first regional game last year). We didn’t lose too many guys, and we’ve got some really strong guys coming up.&uot;