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Kjerstad was finishing college degree

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I can't imagine that the O's would just let him leave to finish his degree without having an understanding a long time ago that he was going to get a chance to do this during the offseason.  Maybe it was written into his contract?

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I have no idea whether it was simply finishing school, but that sound like something he did because he could not be at instructs. I did find Blood’s quote to be a bit ominous (and not particularly clear) when he said:

We’ve got a plan with him and the hopes are we’ll see him next year and put him right into the mix with the rest of these guys who have been exciting to watch.

When Blood says “the hopes are we’ll see him next year,” is he suggesting that it’s not clear as to whether he’ll be able to play next year? Probably not, but I didn’t love the language used by Blood.

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2 hours ago, Camden_yardbird said:

3 weeks of instructional league, not games, not team activities (its a subset of minor leaguers), not anything meaningful. You guys are saying skip finishing your college degree over 3 freaking weeks of instructional baseball...

Good for him.

Who said that?

And why can't he finish his degree this winter? or next winter? or the winter after that?

Good Lord some of you want to fight over everything. Take a deep breath and calm down along with ScOtt who ridiculously down voted my comment. 

If I draft a kid with the #2 over pick and COVID wipes out his pro season, I sure would hope he was chomping at the bit to play in anything baseball related. Is it a huge deal that will mess up his development, absolutely not, but I'd like to know my new draft pick who left college early to be a professional would be 100% focused on his profession. There is plenty of time to get his degree finished. We're not talking about 25th round junior signee that is not really a prospect, but rather the #2 overall pick in the draft who got well over $5 million as a signing bonus.

On top of it all, the Orioles said he was not attending due to a  non-baseball related injury. So maybe, just maybe there is more to this story, which is really the main point in all of this.

At the end of the day, baseball should be his priority over school once he signed that contract and said "I want to be a pro".

I still think there is more to this story then he just randomly decided to complete his degree and he couldn't attend instructs because of it, but that's just me.

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I'm all for education but when he signed the contract he made a commitment to play baseball and in a season where he didn't get to play a lot and with uncertainty looming over next season I would have liked him to have been at the instructs.

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Just thought I’d put the quote in here for those who want to interpret it for themselves:

Roch: “I know the club couldn’t say much about Heston Kjerstad not being there beyond a non-sports medical reason, but is there an update on him as far as what you have set up for him, since he wasn’t able to participate in anything this summer or fall?

Blood: “It’s just unfortunate. The camp was so short and just kind of unfortunate that it didn’t work out for him to come down, but he’s a great kid. He’s actually finishing his degree right now. He’s going to be graduating from Arkansas, I believe this winter, so that was something he was really able to put his head toward and get done, which is great. We’re all for that. We’ve got a plan with him and the hopes are we’ll see him next year and put him right into the mix with the rest of these guys who have been exciting to watch.”

I agree with the interpretation that going to college was not the reason he missed Instructional League.   Sounds like he had to miss it for his medical reasons and decided to spend his time working towards completing his degree.

If that’s wrong, and he missed Fall Instructs so he could take classes, yes I’d have a problem with that.    But I doubt that’s the case.    And we probably won’t learn anything further about this until spring training, so I’m not going to spend the next 4 months obsessing over it.   

 

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On 10/29/2020 at 4:43 PM, Tony-OH said:

On top of it all, the Orioles said he was not attending due to a  non-baseball related injury. So maybe, just maybe there is more to this story, which is really the main point in all of this.

To be clear, Roch called it a “non-sports medical reason,” which is different from a “non-baseball related injury.”   It may have been an illness rather than an injury, and whatever it was didn’t relate to sports.    So for example, it appears he didn’t injure himself playing basketball or pickup football or the like.    But there’s a million other things it could have been, so I’m not going to speculate about it.   Whatever it was, it’s unfortunate.

 

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Haven't we all figured out by now that "non-sports medical reason" is often a code for Covid which they aren't allowed to disclose without the player's permission?

And if it's not Covid, it's mono or something like that.  Or, God forbid, it's symptoms that wind up being something really bad, as happened when Trey missed a week+ of spring training because he wasn't feeling well.

Occam's razor, take the simplest explanation:

Explanation 1:  Orioles say he isn't attending for a medical reason.  They are telling the truth.  Then while he isn't attending, he uses that time to finish is degree.   

Explanation 2:  Orioles lie and say he isn't attending for a medical reason.   Then it comes out that he finished his degree.   That is actually the reason he didn't attend, and the Orioles are keeping that a secret by lying for some reason.

Hmmm.... one explanation seems clearcut and straightforward and something that might happen in the real world.   The other seems to come out of tinfoil hat territory, with inexplicable lying and conpiracty by Them to keep us from knowing at The Truth.

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2 minutes ago, Papeete said:

How about viewing his absence from a logical perspective.

He is not in uniform because he has a medical situation.

While he is bored stiff at home addressing his medical situation, he decides to finish his degree requirements.

MOST colleges are only offering Virtual Classes, and he is taking Virtual Classes to complete his degree requirements.

I applaud him for getting his degree, which he will have for a lifetime . . . there's no guarantee of anything sports..

That signing bonus was guaranteed.  😉

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I know this is a little controversial, but to me the whole point of a college degree is to help you earn more money. Kjerstad has already earned enough money to live more than comfortably for the rest of his life if he never swings the bat once as a professional. But maybe Kjerstad disagrees with me and sees inherent value in completing college. It's his life. As long as the Orioles are okay with it, I'm okay with it

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1 minute ago, Papeete said:

Interesting Reading this thread:

It's a fact that no one on this board has perused his contract . . . potential clause for getting his degree or not!

It's a fact that no one has knowledge of anything discussed between the Orioles and him beyond the contract.

It's a fact that no one here is aware of his medical condition. 

It's a fact that his degree earned will be his for a lifetime.

Now, what's more important, him getting his degree or playing for a few weeks?

Is playing for the Orioles during this short 2020 period going to have ANY impact on his career? NO

Honestly, I don't think you can say that.

You are probably right but maybe they uncover a swing adjustment that he can take into the offseason and perfect?  It's conceivably possible that his career could be impacted.

As for what is more important?  This is hardly the only chance he has to work on his degree and it's pretty unlikely that having a degree in recreation and sport management will make a difference in the next year or so.  I'd say working on his degree right now isn't that important compared with professional baseball.

 

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9 minutes ago, Papeete said:

Is playing for the Orioles during this short 2020 period going to have ANY impact on his career? NO

I’d say maybe yes, maybe no. He spends 4-5 weeks playing with and against other professionals, gets some coaching, gets some eyes on him and they give him a program for what to do over the winter based on that experience and maybe he gets some of his own ideas of what he needs to work on based on that experience.   That gives him a leg up on next year compared to not doing it.   If they thought Fall Instructs didn’t benefit players, they wouldn’t do them, right?

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10 minutes ago, Papeete said:

Yes, a player COULD benefit from the instruction league, even though its a fact that no one has ever benefited enough to be a starter on the major league level the following year, AND he COULD also be in an auto accident and not be able to play any sports. How much is the Instruction League going to help him then. 

The topic of this thread is about the player, but the real discussion is about each Poster's value system . . . intelligence or athletics!

So now the goalpost is if makes an impact on his major league career the next season?  That's quite a jump. 

I will say that one year of age when a player is making his MLB debut can hugely impact his future earnings.

No one in this thread is suggesting that he shouldn't finish his degree at some point. 

Also intelligence and education aren't the same thing. 

 

Of course odds are very good that the speculation of him not being able to attend the camp and instead using his time to work on his degree is correct.

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7 minutes ago, Papeete said:

The topic of this thread is about the player, but the real discussion is about each Poster's value system . . . intelligence or athletics!

I don’t think so.    I have a college degree and a law degree.    My wife has a college degree and two masters’ degrees.   All three of my kids have college degrees, from pricey private colleges that we paid for in full.   One of them has a graduate degree as well.    I totally understand the value of a good education (which is different than “intelligence”).

But Kjerstad is a guy who chose to enter the draft before he’d finished college and take a pile of money to play professional athletics.    In my mind (and probably by contract), he’s obligated to give his employer priority over completing his degree, which plenty of players do without declining their professional obligations.   

Now understand, I don’t think Kjerstad did this.   I believe he was unable to participate for medical reasons and decided to use the time to continue his education, which is great.    But I wouldn’t agree with it if he had simply chosen to blow off Fall Instructs to take classes.    
 

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