March 7, 2007
Former All-Big East third baseman Jason Delaney is living his dream, pursuing a professional career in baseball, while he has a solid non-sports vocation on hold.
Delaney, of Hanson, first started attending the South Shore Baseball Club as a 15-year-old and he continues working out as well as coaching there during his off-season. Right now, Jason is at spring training camp in Bradenton, Florida with fellow minor leaguers in the Pittsburgh Pirates system.
“I played on the 15 and 16 year old Seadogs teams and SSBC is still very much a part of my life,” Delaney said. “Frank Niles and his staff do an extremely good job teaching young kids the game of baseball. Frank is a very knowledgeable baseball guy who teaches what he knows and has helped a lot of players develop quicker than anticipated. All of the SSBC coaches are remarkable. They all played at high levels of baseball. It’s pretty unique and I had a blast.”
“I spoke at last year’s SSBC banquet about how the club helped me develop more than any other coach or program. They got me on track to be able to play college ball and a chance to play professionally. They recognize talent, where it fits best, and how to maximize experience. Their evaluating is consistently on a high level, phenomenal the past few years. A lot of good players have gone through the club since we left as 16 year olds. They keep getting better and better.”
Delaney played on B.C. High’s Massachusetts Division One championship team with SSBC mates Michael Conroy, Ryan Morgan and Drew Locke. Conroy signed a pro contract with the Cleveland Indians after graduating from B.C. High but Delaney, Morgan and Locke played four seasons at Boston College.
“That was an exceptional group that does not come along very often,” SSBC President Frank Niles stated. “They were talented, dedicated young gentlemen who loved to play the game. Jason was and is no different – a real easy guy to root for.”
Delaney, drafted in the 12th round by the Pittsburgh Pirates, last year batted .300 with 27 doubles, nine home runs and 75 RBI for the Hickory Crawdads. A third baseman at B.C., Jason played in the outfield last year but he could be moved to first base as early as this spring.
“I could be moving to first base, depending on the team’s needs now and in the future,” Delaney remarked. “I just want to play. It’s early but I think I’ll be assigned to Lynchburg (Virginia), the Pirates’ high A affiliate. SSBC has gone from a place where players went on to play in small colleges. Then players started going to big colleges and now every year a few are drafted and have chances to play pro ball. That’s extremely difficult for players from the Northeast (due to weather constraints). SSBC has become more and more noticed nationally. It’s been a unique evolution with a good product and tremendous accomplishments.”
Delaney, who has a degree in finance from Boston College, intends to give pro baseball his best shot, but if things don’t work out, he eventually would love a front office job in baseball.
“I have an extremely unique opportunity because I have a degree in finance that really means something because it’s from a very good school,” Jason explained. “I’ve put myself in a position to succeed in my non-baseball life, whenever that happens. I’m at ease knowing an injury or something else could end my career because of my education. Sure, I’d be disappointed, but I won’t regret anything I’ve done because of the position I’m in. I’d love to stay in the game after my playing days are over. My dream job would be as general manager of a baseball organization.”
Jason Delaney’s clearly a winner on and off the diamond.