Day by Day

Foster Griffin committed to Ole Miss baseball many months ago, signed last November, and continues to be excited about his chosen school. But for now, all that matters to Griffin as far as baseball is concerned is his high school team and winning a state title.

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"We're in the regional semifinals," said the 6-foot-5, 195-pound left-handed pitcher from The First Academy in Orlando, Fla., a Class 3A school. "Then its regional finals and the state final four."

That's the plan anyway. One of the reasons his team is doing so well is Griffin. Projected by some to be a first-round pick in the MLB draft next month, Griffin said it's all about team first for him.

"It's gone really well," he said of the season. "We've done really well as a team. We're 24-4. We won a national tournament in North Carolina that was held at Cary. That was a huge thing for us. We're feeling good as the playoffs continue."

As for his own season, Griffin is also pleased.

"I'm 6-1 this season. I've felt good so far this year," he said. "I've had two complete game shutouts. One was in the tournament in Cary, N.C. My velocity jumped up a little this year. I'm up to 94. My changeups and offspeeds have been good and I'm keeping them in the strike zone. So far so good."

Certainly Griffin knows how well he's thought of by pro scouts. But the time for being concerned about that isn't now.

"I'm not focused on that. If that time comes it will come," he said. "I'm excited about Ole Miss and I'm committed there. I took a whole lot of time and pride in choosing the college I wanted to go to. Ole Miss was definitely the fit for me, and I'm definitely excited about it. I have been excited about it for a long time. I committed over a year and a half ago.

"The draft will come, and no one knows what's going to happen. I'll just let that unfold."

Griffin handles whatever he hears with a mature approach.

"From what I hear from other people, the projections are kind of high," he said. "I like to stay humble myself and whatever happens happens. It's in bigger hands.

"There are different judgments from different people who make these mock drafts. No one really knows what will happen besides those people in the draft room."

Foster Griffin
File Photo

The draft begins June 5. Before that, there are some important moments in Griffin's future.

"I want to win a state championship on May 15 and then I'll graduate on May 16. That would be a pretty cool thing to do," he said.

After May 16, Griffin knows there will be a waiting period. He will try to handle it as normally as possible.

"I'll soak up these last couple of weeks, and then I'm not really quite sure what I'll do (until the draft)," he said. "I'm sure I'll stay on the same routine for baseball with workouts and bullpens and stuff."

Still with Ole Miss as a part of his future plans.

"I look forward to getting up to Ole Miss and working out with the strength coach up there in early July," he said.

His numbers are impressive. He's consistently 91-92 with his fast ball and has at times been at 93. He's topped out at 94 on a few occasions. He throws a two-seam fast ball, a four-seam fast ball, a circle changeup, and a curve ball.

Baseball has long been a part of his life. So has the process of choosing a college, which began a long time ago.

"I went on nine different recruiting visits. The relationship I made with Coach (Carl) Lafferty, even before I got up to Oxford, that meant a lot to me," Griffin said. "I knew from what he told me it is a special place. Once I got on campus and walked around, it was awesome. Seeing the fan base and how they treat baseball games was really, really cool. Just the school spirit they have. It felt like it is a really unified school and definitely what I was looking for."

Ole Miss had to beat out some other top college baseball programs and did.

"My top schools were Ole Miss, Virginia, Clemson, and Miami. Those were probably the top ones," Griffin said.

As for the draft, Griffin said his family has also been focused on the high school season and his senior campaign. In a couple of weeks, they will begin to talk about what's next.

"We don't have a number right now," he said of what he might be offered by a professional team. "We're probably going to wait until it gets closer to the draft before we select one. We haven't even really sat down as a family yet to talk about that. But that is something we're going to do as it gets closer to the draft. I'm just trying to win a state championship right now."

He still believes Ole Miss, its baseball program, and its people can be a part of his future. Time will tell.

"I'm excited to get up to Oxford and be a part of Ole Miss and be a part of Ole Miss baseball," Griffin said. "That's something I'm definitely looking forward to and excited about."

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