Lions Sign Baseball Star
- Friday, 05 April 2013
SUBIACO have signed former Major League Baseball player and national representative Luke Hughes to a deal which could see the Perth Heat star make a surprise return to the sport he quit to pursue his baseball dream.
Hughes, who represented Australia as recently as last month at the World Baseball Classic, failed to secure a professional contract for the 2013 baseball season.
In 2010 at age 26, Hughes joined an elite group when he hit a home run in his first plate appearance at the Major League level.
The 28-year-old had a rollercoaster ride in 2012 when the Minnesota Twins, who he had spent nine seasons with, released him.
Hughes' career was revived when the Oakland Athletics offered him a contract, but the Morley product only played four times for the A's.
The Toronto Blue Jays provided a second lifeline when a minor league contract was placed on the table, but the door was closed shortly after the 2012 season concluded.
Hughes returned home and spent the Australian summer with the Alcohol Think Again Perth Heat in the Australian Baseball League in their attempt for a third straight championship.
A talented junior footballer, Hughes made the decision to pursue a career in baseball despite showing potential while playing colts football for East Perth.
Hughes was a part of the Royals’ 2000 colts premiership as a 16 year old.
"I was watching the East Perth-West Perth game on TV and I just thought 'why not?'" he said.
"Why shouldn't I have a kick this year and see what happens, see where it takes me?
"I am the kind of person that once they go at something they want to try and get to the highest level possible.
Subiaco Football Operations Manager Luke Sanders says the club is thrilled to have Hughes on board for season 2013.
“ The club’s excited to have Luke sign on after his experience at the elite level in Major League Baseball,”
“We understand he hasn’t played footy for a number of years but he’s an elite athlete and we’re are excited about his potential.” Sanders said.
“He’s experienced success at that elite level and I’m sure he has a lot to offer to our playing group.”