Hello everyone, my name is Lucas May with the Los Angeles Dodgers, and I am representing our team out here in the Fall League. As I am doing a weekly blog on my experience out here, I will have this be an introduction and tell a little about myself and how I came to play in the Fall League.
Starting off, I was raised mostly in St. Louis and still spend my off-seasons there. I was drafted out of high school in 2003 and signed as a shortstop, where I played for 2 and a half years. Mid way through my 2005 season I converted to the outfield where I would spend the next year and a half. After the 2006 season in Low-A Columbus, the Dodgers approached me about converting again to catcher.
I jumped in with both feet during the instructional league in Arizona that fall, thinking that this would be my last position change. My first year catching in 2007 was the epitome of a learning experience. With the help of Steve Yeager, Charlie Hough, and Dave Collins, my High-A experience was a crash course of ‘how to catch’. The Dodgers catching coordinator, Travis Barbary, would make regular trips in to track my progress as well. There is so much more work to be done as a catcher rather than an infielder or outfielder. Physically it is a grind, but even more is the mental strength it takes to remember hitters and to know what your pitchers are capable of.
This year I played in the Double-A Southern League out of Jacksonville Fl. It was a very challenging year for me both at the plate and behind. At this level you regularly see guys that get called up to the big leagues from your team, or teams you play against. Definitely the hottest league I’ve every played in.
Besides being in my first Major League spring training this year and going overseas to China to play the Padres, being invited to the Arizona Fall League is the biggest honor of my career. We have had three days of practice so far, and the talent we have is amazing. The level of play exhibited during batting practice and bullpen sessions is far and above what I am used to. Having a former catcher, Gary Allenson, as my manager here is a bonus for me, being a new catcher. His old school mentality and knowledge of the game is sure to push me to be a better player. I am extremely excited to play this fall and get to know some guys from different organizations. I feel lucky to be chosen to represent the Dodgers here in the Fall League and look forward to sharing my experiences with you all. As I get to know my teammates and coaches better, I will be able to offer a little more insight about our team. The first game of the fall is Tuesday, Oct. 7. Thank you and we’ll talk again soon!