Tom Brady and Patrick Mahomes could become two of the greatest soccer players of all time. But if they had wanted to, there was another sport waiting for them.
Brady and Mahomes both played baseball growing up. Mahomes, of course, is the son of former big league Pat Mahomes, but Brady could get things done on the baseball field as well. In fact, Brady and Mahomes both competed in Major League Baseball’s first-year draft for years before they were drafted into the NFL Draft.
Surely the NFL is grateful that Brady and Mahomes both chose football because it gave the league one of the best quarterbacks in Super Bowl history on February 7, 2021. But when you see Brady or Mahomes find a tricky arm location to complete a throw or slide with some excellent mechanics after a run, there’s a baseball background to point out, a reason they have an extra skill here and there really nailed down.
Tom Brady’s baseball career
To those who remember Brady dropped an assist in the Super Bowl against the Eagles, don’t laugh – he was a high school catcher. Brady played two college seasons and hit .311 with eight homers for Junipero Serra in California.
According to MLB.com, left-handed drummer Brady had tremendous power. He once hit a home run off the team bus that woke his bus driver, and during pre-practice at the Seattle Kingdome, he apparently hit a home run with a wooden bat while ‘he was still in high school.
Brady was selected in the 1995 MLB Draft by the Montreal Expos in the 18th round as the 507th overall selection. His commitment to playing football in Michigan surely knocked him down in the draft, and Brady wouldn’t play baseball after high school.
Former Expos scout John Hughes, however, believed Brady might have been successful in baseball.
“I think he would have been a pro,” Hughes told the Mercury News. “He had all the intangibles. He could throw, left-handed power. There’s no reason to think this guy couldn’t have been a big league receiver.”
And if you want to jump into the GOAT discussion, former Expos general manager Kevin Malone thought Brady could reach even greater heights than just a MLB starter.
“I think he could have been one of the greatest catchers of all time,” Malone told Bleacher Report. “I know that’s quite a statement, but the projections were based on the fact that we had a receiver hitting the left hand, with arm strength and who was athletic.”
Brady threw a few ceremonial first shots at Fenway Park during his career with the Patriots, so maybe he will do it again in Tampa if the Buccaneers win Super Bowl 55. But if someone did their homework , they would know Brady would. get more comfortable crouching behind home plate, receiving a pitch and throwing yourself to second base.
Patrick Mahomes’ baseball career
Baseball was always going to be a part of Mahomes’ life since his father, Pat, launched 11 years in the big leagues as a relief. The day after Mahomes was born, his father secured a stoppage for the Twins as part of his fourth season in MLB.
Mahomes’ biggest exposure as a baseball player was during the 2010 Junior League World Series, when he was a shortstop for the finalist team in Tyler, Texas.
Mahomes continued to play baseball (and basketball) in high school. As a varsity pitcher, he once beaten future White Sox pitcher Michael Kopech in a playoff game by pitching a scorer with 16 strikeouts.
“It was just a bulldog”, Kopech told the Kansas City Star. “To be honest, I think anyone who has ever played with or against Patrick would have assumed he would have been a pro at whatever sport he played.”
Patrick Mahomes sat in the mid-90s at the age of 17 for Whitehouse HS in Texas.
Reports say he regularly threw a baseball “well over 200 feet by the age of 10”.
(via DonaldBoyles / YouTube) pic.twitter.com/20IdemG4j5
– Danny Vietti (@DannyVietti) January 12, 2020
Mahomes was taken to the 37th round of the 2014 MLB Draft by the Detroit Tigers, although he chose to go to Texas Tech to play football instead. He made three appearances as a rookie for the Red Raiders baseball team, going 0 for 2 at plate and failing to come out against three hitters on the mound – that’s a college lifetime average of .000 and ERA and WHIP from infinity.
A right-handed hitter, Mahomes was solid on the flat in high school. After throwing that no-hitter against Kopech, his team played a game later that night and he went 3-for-4 with a home run.
Maybe if Super Bowl 55 goes into overtime, Mahomes and Brady can set up a derby to determine the champion.