He Drafted Tom Brady to Play … Baseball
He was named by Baseball America as one of the Top-10 scouts of the 20th century. Maybe that’s enough reason for New Englanders to forgive him for trying to sign Patriots’ quarterback Tom Brady out of high school to play baseball. But when Brady was riding the pine in Ann Arbor while Brian Griese led the Michigan Wolverines to the 1997 Rose Bowl, baseball probably looked pretty good to the now two-time Super Bowl MVP.
Although football was a better fit for Brady, that doesn’t mean Gary Hughes isn’t one of the best scouts in the business, and he’s now employed by the Boston Red Sox as a professional scouting consultant. Hughes, 70, spent the last nine seasons with the Chicago Cubs but then resigned as special assistant after the season following the firing of former Chicago general manager, Jim Hendry.
Hughes’ relationship with Hendry creates an interesting, albeit minor, subplot to all of this. Following his recent departure in Chicago, the former Cubs’ GM is now now a special assistant to New York Yankees general manager Brian Cashman.
According to redsox.com, Baseball America also honored Hughes with its lifetime achievement award in 2007, and two years later he was inducted into the Professional Baseball Scouts Hall of Fame.
Now in his 45th season in professional baseball, Hughes was working with the Montreal Expos in 1995 when he scouted Brady as a catcher out of Serra High School in San Mateo, California. The now defunct Expos drafted “Tom Terrific” in the 18th round.
I’m sure Hughes will be watching Brady and the Pats Sunday night – and probably still thinks the star quarterback would make a great big league catcher. Who knows, maybe he would be.
I’m not a Pats fan (although I respect them), but I’m a huge NFL fan and can’t wait for the game. Not to mention I think Al Michaels is one of the best in the business and NBC might produce an NFL game better than anyone else.
For all those reasons, and because of the food, Super Sunday promises to be one of the best days of the year.