Weems' career at UA shows hard work pays off
Tucson Ariz.- Pitcher, Avery Weems (27) final closer to end the game after Zack was taken out of he mound on Sunday April 14, 2019 at Hi Corbett Field. Arizona wins 4-2 in the series finale against the California Golden Bears.
Arizona baseball pitcher Avery Weems’ collegiate career is coming to an end. Coming to the UA after spending two years playing baseball for a community college, it has been quite the ride for Weems.
Weems spent his freshman and sophomore seasons pitching for Yavapai College, a community college in Prescott, Ariz. In his freshman season in 2016, Weems finished with a 4-1 record and 3.90 ERA over 14 appearances. The following season in his sophomore year, Weems finished with a 6-4 record and 2.89 ERA over 65 1/3 innings pitched, including two complete-game shutouts.
After a successful two years in community college, Weems wanted to make his name known on a larger stage.
“I wanted to get bigger, and I wanted to get stronger,” Weems said when asked what his primary reason was for coming to Arizona. “I wanted to improve mentally and physically on the baseball field to get me ready for the next level.”
In his junior campaign, and first season with the Wildcats, the left-hander appeared in 26 games to the tune of a 5.69 ERA over 55 1/3 innings pitched with 39 strikeouts. In his senior season this year, Weems has appeared in 21 games posting a 6.75 ERA over 46 2/3 innings pitched with 31 strikeouts.
Weems was used as both a starter and relief pitcher in his two-year tenure at Arizona.
“Not necessarily, no,” Weems said when asked if he has a preference between being used as a starting versus relief pitcher. “I like to relieve, because I know I like to be trusted and put in those kinds of situations. I also like to be a starter. I like to take control of the game, and it’s whatever the team needs to me to do to win that game. That’s what I’m willing to do.”
Weems faced a lot of adversity coming from a small community college to a major Division I school in Tucson, but said he couldn’t have asked for a better experience at UA these past two years.
“I have had to face some adversity, and I’ve had some success. I think it has definitely helped me out in the path that I want to take to go play professional baseball,” he said.
When asked what the most memorable moment has been with the team these past two years, he responded with the walk-off win at home last season against Oregon State.
Weems has his eyes set on the major leagues post-graduation and said he would prefer to be a starting pitcher in pro baseball. However he would be willing and able to do whatever they would have him do to further his career and have the opportunity to continue to play baseball.
“I’ll probably be hanging out for a couple weeks until the MLB draft,” Weems explained. “I’ll sit down with my family and enjoy it. If my name gets called, I’ll celebrate and get ready to go play baseball. If not, I guess we’ll go from there and see what happens and see what my future has to hold.”
The senior has been a key piece of the Wildcats pitching staff these past two seasons. He concluded with this:
“I would just like to thank all the coaches that got me here to this point, all the little leagues coaches and the travel coaches that really took the time and effort to teach me the game of baseball and teach me to be the man that I am today,” Weems said.
He also took take to thanks the UA fans.
“To all the fans and other people that supported me throughout my years in college and years playing baseball, I just want to thank them,” he said. “I wanted to show younger kids growing up that it’s possible to do what you put your mind to if you put all the work in. I just wanted to give a special thanks to all those people, and I’ll always be a Wildcat. Bear down.”
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