Wesson Chooses the Bulldogs

Itawamba Community College lefthanded pitcher Jared Wesson, a draft-and-follow draftee after being selected by the Florida Marlins in last June's Major League Baseball Draft, has decided on Mississippi State after considering the Marlins' final offer.

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"It was a tough decision, but the money situation didn't work out," said the 6-5, 200-pounder. "I told them what I thought and it didn't work out."

He explained what led to the final decision.

"The guys from the Marlins that I talked to were good guys and were straight-forward. Last year the guy that drafted me basically knew that I wasn't going to go (pro) just because I didn't play," said Jared, who was redshirted his true freshman year at ICC after undergoing successful Tommy John surgery on his left elbow. "They just wanted to get me under control so that maybe it would work out this year where I could go. Throughout the year, a Marlins' cross-checker was at just about every game. Each time they said they liked what they saw. Then, after the workout at Meridian, I didn't hear from them for awhile. Then, they called me letting me know they were going to make an offer. I went to Meridian and met with them. The guy I talked to told me to go home and talk about it with my family, think things over, and that they would get back to me to see if they could make an agreement with me. We talked Saturday and it didn't work out. Now, I'm excited about coming to Mississippi State."

And the MSU coaches are probably just as excited about the prospect of having him at State next year. Not only will they be getting a top notch talent, but Jared proved how touch-minded he is this past season by pitching the last half of it with tendinitis.

"I had tendinitis probably the last half of the season. It hurt bad, but once I got going in a game it was fine," said Jared, who struck out 77 batters in 63 innings this past season. "I've talked to some doctors and therapists about it. They said it wouldn't lead to anything else, it's just painful. How I pitched through it was up to me. It probably affected my velocity, but during the regional at the end of the year, I was throwing from 87 to 91."

He'll take some time off this summer to rest his arm and rid himself of the tendinitis.

"I'm not going to pick up a ball all June, so I can give it a rest," he said. "Then, I'm moving to Starkville in July and start getting into the workout program. I think a couple of redshirts will be there, too, so I'll throw with them."

Gene Swindoll is the publisher of the Dawgs' Bite, Powered by GenesPage.com website, the source for Mississippi State sports on Scout.com sports network. You can contact him by emailing swindoll@genespage.com.

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