M’s outfielder Jarrod Dyson summed it up best: “Keep your ears open and mouth shut. … Go there willing to work, and you’ll be just fine.”
ARLINGTON, Texas — It’s that time of year where students across the country graduate from high school and college and begin the next chapter in their lives.
For roughly 35 of the 40 players taken by the Mariners in the 2017 Major League Baseball draft, their first job in professional baseball awaits.
Unlike at commencement ceremonies, there is no speaker to offer insight and advice to these players as they embark on a journey that they have worked toward for much of their short lives.
So why not ask some people in the big leagues — the place where all of these players want to reach — for some advice in their endeavor?
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It’s not quite the eloquence or poetry of Chicago Tribune columnist Mary Schmich’s hypothetical commencement speech column: “Advice, like youth, probably just wasted on the young,” written in 1997 and best known as “Everybody’s free to wear Sunscreen” thanks to a spoken-word production by filmmaker Baz Lurhmann. It doesn’t have the resonance of Steve Jobs’ words to Stanford University in 2005.
But for players aspiring to the major leagues, it’s usable advice.
Manager Scott Servais was drafted twice. He was takend in the second round of the 1985 draft out of Westby High School in Wisconsin by the Mets. He opted not to sign and honored his college commitment to Creighton. Three years later, he was a third-round pick by the Astros.
Beyond his playing days, he also worked on the scouting and player-development side with the Rangers and Angels. And now as a big league manager, he’s helping shape the philosophy of the organization.
“It changes your life,” he said. “Being on the other side of scouting, often times the goal becomes to get drafted, I think, because of the…