It’s a tough call, to be certain, but either way, he’s going to make out pretty well.
Saul Garza, North’s superstar catcher, was still in decision mode over the weekend, mulling over a shot at the pros versus going the college route.
Garza dominated for four years – in the field and at bat – and was expected to be a good bet for the MLB draft last month. And he was selected by the St. Louis Cardinals, though the 31st round was a far cry from his actual talent and worth.
“I was a possible pick as early as the sixth, I heard that from several teams,” he noted. “But it came down to money, and the teams that called me were offering such and such, my family and I had a number, based on where I was ranked. And we didn’t get that number. I might have gone in the 11th or 12th, too, but I talked to the teams and heard what they were offering. We wanted to make sure I could get a good figure and enough money for college down the line.”
He did not sign, as we know. But the plot thickened recently, however. As Garza prepared to choose a school, the Cardinals called back, and offered him substantially more. The North star has until July 7 to tell them what he is going to do.
“It’s tempting to go pro, let me tell you, and the Cardinals have upped their offer, base and then more money for college too,” Garza said. “So right now it’s up in the air. I am leaning toward Howard Junior College, because I can get 400 at-bats, fall and spring combined, and really work on catching. But right now, I just don’t know what I am going to do, really.”
Garza has gotten some Division I offers, and Texas Tech considers him a lock to come to Lubbock if he chooses, after time at Howard. Texas A&M and Texas are also in the mix, so the bottom line is, Edinburg’s best prospect ever – the son of Santana Garza, the former EHS hurler who tossed five no-hitters in high school – is sitting pretty right now.
“In the long run, the JUCO route might be the best, getting to go to school and learn, still play ball,” he suggested. “When you go to the pros out of high school. I don’t know, you’re thrown in there with men, and as a catcher there are so many things you need to be good at it. In college I can learn more about that and just get better.”
Garza said that his parents have prepared him well to be able to make the best decision for the future, which is assuredly bright to say the least.
“They have left it up to me, but they have given me a lot of guidance,” he commented. “Like I say, it’s pretty tempting to go with the pros, it’s a lifelong dream. We’ll see how it works out, I have until July 7 to decide.”