JACK Barrie is firing at the Melbourne Aces, after being released by the Minnesota Twins and Canberra Cavalry. Picture: Ian Knight SMP Images.
JACK Barrie is firing at the Melbourne Aces, after being released by the Minnesota Twins and Canberra Cavalry. Picture: Ian Knight SMP Images.

Double disappointment won't stop Jack Barrie

TALENTED infielder Jack Barrie will use his double disappointment in 2015 to spur him on to bigger heights with the Melbourne Aces.

The 19-year-old Maleny product revealed on social media the Minnesota Twins released him in June.

That was only after being given the opportunity to play in 25 Rookie games in the Gulf Coast League last year - the first rung in the grueling US minor-league circuit.

That was also after he was awarded a lucrative six-figure signing bonus for the Major League organisation in 2014.

And he was described at the time as someone who had as much raw power as anyone in the country, by Baseball Queensland high performance manager Andy Utting.

Adding to the discontent, the powerful 114kg man was also released by the Canberra Cavalry in the Australian Baseball League, early into this season, despite hitting a home run in his second at-bat.

But the Aces then came calling, and Barrie has five hits from 22 at-bats in eight games for the franchise.

He can consider himself unlucky after being released from the Cavs, coming up with two hits in his only three plate appearances.

But it was a deal done between the ABL, Cavs and Aces in order to give the more experienced players at Canberra more game time.

After another move, the youngster is now enjoying himself in Melbourne.

"I was a little bit upset. I was trying to get my career back on track," Barrie said.

"It was more the fact they had a lot of pro guys and affiliated guys that needed time.

"Nothing against those guys. I'm really happy I'm with Melbourne now."

The affable Sunshine Coaster said he was still getting used to living in a big city.

But he has made an instant impression, crushing a homer in his first at-bat for the Aces.

Barrie now has five hits from 22 plate appearances in eight games for the Melbourne franchise.

He also made ABL history this year, becoming the first player to hit a home run for two different teams in the same season.

Barrie believes he's settled at the Aces under head coach Joe Vavra, who has a stack of experience as a Major League coach at the LA Dodgers and Twins.

"In Melbourne it's ridiculous - it's very busy," he said.

"I'm used to being up in Maleny, and there's not much traffic up there.

"Joe's an amazing guy - he has so much knowledge. I'm very lucky to be with this team."

Barrie said his short stint in the US minor leagues presented him with enormous challenges - but his success in the ABL has him hungry to get back over there and give it another crack.

"It was tough, being someone new to the whole baseball thing, especially in America," he said.

"But I would love to get another shot."
 



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