Red Sox non-prospect right-handed pitcher Mitchell Osnowitz
By Rick McNair
The Boston Red Sox occasional sign a player whose talent is superseded by other factors. In this instances, Mitchel Osnowitz offers a personal blog on his minor league adventures.
Admittedly, I have a fascination with players whose chance of the ultimate Golden Ticket – a major league roster slot – is as likely as my running a 2:30 marathon at my age (72). There is something gritty about their willingness to continue to face a dream that is slowing evaporating, but occasional a Daniel Nava surfaces to give that precious glimmer of hope.
The transaction wire was one that I simply did not see – I have a perverse fascination with the transaction wire. If so, this would have been written back when the Boston Red Sox offered employment to Mitchell Osnowitz – a name that certainly aroused some deep rooted memories and forced me to do the inevitable of “Where and why is that name familiar?”
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Osnowitz was a college player who never pitched. At 6’5” and a listed 245 pounds – I’ll skip metric conversions – Osnowitz was a third baseman and subsequently remained undrafted. The now 25-year-old righty decided to show up at the Braves doorstep for a tryout. The Braves apparently thought size does matter along with the ability to toss in the mid-90s and the trek started.
"I’ve talked before how it is never good to be the guy who squanders away a good team effort for eight innings and in a blink of an eye, all of that is ruined because I couldn’t get it done. Mentally I don’t think I was locked in all the way, that I was pitching scared, and it showed in my results. – Mitchell Osnowitz"
Unfortunately for Osnowitz, the learning curve for being a competent hurler takes some time and the Braves simply got tired and moved on. The next baseball port of entry for Osnowitz was the Colorado Rockies with similar results – gone. Even an obligatory foray into independent ball. Now Osnowitz is pitching for the Salem Red Sox where the early results have not been promising.
There are two areas that set Osnowitz apart from the usual baseball collective – the first is accessibility and the second – where I had first encountered him – is he is Jewish and I do follow a unique baseball site dedicated to Jewish players. But the focus for me is the very first item – accessibility.
"Off the field there wasn’t much going on, a few weird conversations in the bullpen, and some good conversation with our pitching coach. One of the topics we talked about in the bullpen was how we all know guys who “don’t care” but somehow work their way up through the ladder of minor league baseball onto the league. – Mitchell Osnowitz"
Osnowitz writes a blog and a few quotes have been placed into this article. I have found his blog educational, honest, well written and a pleasure to read. This is an important source for the day-to-day tribulations of a player on the fringe in the low minors and has insightful personal reflections on his own performances and baseball itself.
Next: Pomeranz is allowing home runs at an alarming rate
I will follow Osnowitz’s blog and most certainly his adventures as he attempts to acquire the necessary skill set. As a fan and observer further advancement for Osnowitz will be a daunting task. The early results are not promising with now three organizations and indy ball, but baseball history has many who eventually got the call – even for a day.