Living the Dream & Nearly Striking Out
By Shawn Brown
The 700 Club
“I think a lot of kids, at least a lot of kids where I grew up, they wanted to play Major League Baseball. They wanted to play for the Phillies, cause I grew up just north of here. And, so it was something that yeah, I guess I could say I always wanted to be a Major League baseball player, but along the way there was times when it was, it wasn’t looking too—it wasn’t looking too hot that I was going to make it, said Erik.”
Erik was selected in the 2002 MLB draft by the Toronto BlueJays. He thought he would be like most major league players and spend roughly 4 years in the minors before being called up to the big leagues.
“I remember talking to my wife about it. And I said, you know, If it doesn’t happen in 5 years you know, that will be it. Well, 5 years went by like that, and nothing happened, said Erik.”
5 years, came and went and no call up to the big leagues. With a 4 month old son at home and the finances tight, it was time for Erik and his wife to make a decision.
“That 5th year, the 5th year would have been 2007. We had that discussion because she’s a good planner, has a good memory. She said, You said 5 years… right? And I said, Yeah. And she said, well I’m not ready yet.
So after praying and asking God for guidance, they decided to stick with it.
We just both felt peace that we should stay in baseball. And he continued to open doors, sometimes they were small, tiny little doors that we had to squeeze through. But he was opening them, said Erik.”
After spending 7 seasons in the Blue Jays minor league system, Erik eventually got picked up by the Pittsburgh Pirates organization in 2009. Then the following season, his dream became a reality when he and was called up the to bigs.
“Up until that point I had always been passed up. I wasn’t the guy. If there was two guys, Well, not him. You know let’s take someone else. But getting that call was, Um, it was –it was awesome, said Erik.”
In 2011, Erik signed a deal with the Phillies. Now he’s using this opportunity to share about the love of Chirst and God’s faithfulness.
“I want my presence here in the big leagues to be a –to be a beacon of bright light for the Lord, for people to come to the Lord, for people to get to know the Lord. The Lord walks beside me every day. And when I play on the field, I want people to see that. I’m still competitive, I’m still working hard, but I’m going to give it everything I have for the Lord and for my family, said Erik.”
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