QB Shea Patterson Focused on Michigan Football, Has MLB Backup Plan

QB Shea Patterson Focused on Michigan Football, Has MLB Backup Plan

Football

QB Shea Patterson Focused on Michigan Football, Has MLB Backup Plan

Shea Patterson hasn’t played organized baseball since he was a junior in high school.

Nevertheless, in the 39th round of the 2018 MLB Draft, he was selected by the Texas Rangers. He went on to sign a six-year deal, agreeing that the Rangers allow him to focus on the 2018 football season before reporting to the team’s organization.

Playing down the road is definitely an option for Patterson, who always thought he was going to end up in the MLB. But right now, he’s focused on the Wolverines traveling to play Notre Dame on Sept. 1.

“I don’t think there’s really any intent there,” Patterson said. “I’m 100% football right now. I’m focused on the University of Michigan and playing for this team and doing my part. I just think it’s cool, really. I played a lot in high school and I enjoy baseball.

“I kinda always thought it was what I was going to play when I was 12 or 13, but when football took off, that’s my main goal.”

The 6-foot-2, 200-pound third baseman and quarterback reported to the Triple-A Round Rock Express during a home stand in late July that carried over into early August. He was given a taste of professional baseball, wearing the No. 2 jersey, taking batting practice and doing other team activities.

Patterson didn’t get a chance to play in a game but thoroughly enjoyed the experience.

“It was amazing,” Patterson said. “Leaving that clubhouse, I kinda felt down a little bit! I was obviously happy to get back here. But, met a lot of cool guys out there. A lot of veterans. The cool thing about it was they put me in Triple A. They didn’t send me out to the new guys in Arizona. They really put me in a good situation to learn (from) guys that played 10-15 years in the MLB. To be around and see the day-to-day grind they go through, it was awesome.”

Michigan head coach Jim Harbaugh has been beyond ecstatic with his transfer quarterback from Ole Miss for testing the waters with baseball. He has no issues with Patterson checking out baseball outside of his time with Michigan football.

“I saw him get drafted. There wasn’t any communication before that,” Harbaugh said. “Saw him get drafted, texted him and said congratulations. That’s really cool. I started thinking about it nostalgically, ‘Hey, who were some of the best two-sport players the game has ever known?’ I started going that way.

“I was at a football camp when he got drafted and for an hour or so was just thinking about that. Then got refocused. Dave DeBusschere, Bo Jackson, Deion Sanders. Dave Winfield — he was drafted in three sports, right? I was happy for him. Congratulated him on it. Since then, I know he’s going to work out with the team, that kind of thing. Cool. I wouldn’t hold a guy back from that. Wish I was good enough to do that.”

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