WEST LINN, OR (KPTV) – From West Linn High to Stanford University and maybe one day the Major Leagues.
Will Matthiessen and Tim Tawa are a year apart in school first at WLHS then as members of the Cardinal baseball team and both are now back to where it all began, home at mom and dad's with brothers and sisters while awaiting a return to the diamond.
“Tim and I have been teammates for a long, long time and good buddies and now it’s almost a ‘Hey, Tim, when are we hitting today?,” Matthiessen said.
Prior to the pandemic, Matthiessen was in his first Spring Training with the Pittsburgh Pirates who drafted him in the sixth round last June, then spending the summer playing Single-A ball in Morgantown, West Virginia.
“Thank God we signed and were drafted last year rather than this year,” he said.
Next month’s COVID-19 altered MLB draft has been chopped down to five rounds leaving Will’s old high school and college buddy, former Gatorade player of the year in both baseball and football, Tim Tawa, wondering what’s next.
“Everyone’s goal is to get drafted and move up the ranks,” Tawa said.
While Tim’s junior season was lost in Palo Alto, if he isn’t drafted, he could return for another year down on the farm where he’ll soon be just a quarter way from graduating with a communication major and political science minor.
“I am hopeful that I will be in one of the top five rounds, but you never know. It’s nice to have that security blanket to have at least another year to come back,” he said.
When asked how much the loss of the season effect Tawa in that regard, he said.
“It’s tough but it’s also tough for everybody,” he said. “Just kind of roll with the punches and work with what I’ve got and trust that I am good enough,” Tawa said. “Obviously, there is lack of belief that I am good enough to be in the top five rounds and be a professional baseball player.”
The two buddies are counting down the days to return to the diamond while back together in West Linn.
“Thank God, Will is here because doing it by myself would be brutal so it’s good to have somebody to pass the time with,” Tawa said.
“It’s not just a, ‘let’s go work on baseball thing’, it gives us something to do during the day that we enjoy,” Matthiessen said.
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