Baseball’s regular season is right around the corner, and no other sport seems to lend itself to spiritual applications than America’s pastime. In this collection of thirty devotionals, Del Duduit and others collect stories from the diamond and relate them to one’s faith journey. The devotions are encouraging, and many of them would work well as illustrations in sermons.
Like any book, there are positive and negative aspects in Dugout Devotions. There is a proper emphasis on the importance of relying on the Word rather than just feelings (2 Timothy 3:16-17). However, there is the contradictory mention of a player who thought the Lord “tapped…him on the shoulder.” In another place, a devotional makes reference to the reader “really feel(ing) God calling you to go on (a mission) trip,” and another talks of a player “receiv(ing) a divine call” about human trafficking.
Many of the entries end with a section called “Step Up To The Plate,” offering suggestions how one might apply the lessons from the devotion. Bible study, prayer, and attendance to worship services are often among the recommendations.
While there are several devotions that discuss a player’s decision to give his life to Christ, there is no mention of how that is done. When one reads the book of Acts and the epistles, the conversion process is on display: one becomes a Christian by hearing the gospel (Romans 10:17), believing it (Romans 10:9-10), repenting of sin (Acts 3:19), confessing one’s belief (Acts 8:37), and being immersed for the remission of sins (Acts 2:38). With so much confusion in the religious world, it would be prudent to include such information in any religious book. One cannot decide for himself how he comes to God; only God can tell us how to do that, and He does tell us in His Word.
For readers who are grounded in the truth, these devotions can be encouraging. One must always be careful, though, regardless of the writer, to consistently verify what man writes with what God has revealed. There are a lot of people with good intentions that will end up on the wrong team in eternity because they trusted in man without turning to God’s Word (Matthew 7:13-23).
The writers of the devotions are Del Duduit, Michelle Medlock Adams, Ryan Farr, Beckie Lindsey, Scott McCausey, Clint Rutledge, and Cyle Young. The major leaguer players, coaches, and executives featured are Brian Dozier, Albert Pujols, Ben Zobrist, Clayton Kershaw, Francisco Lindor, Aaron Judge, Andrew McCutchen, Andy Pettitte, Michael Lorenzen, Tony Graffanino, R.A. Dickey, Mike Sarbaugh, Adam Wainwright, Cody Allen, Jim Morris, Mike Matheny, Blaine Boyer, Mike Rikard, Tim Martin, Matt Carpenter, and Adam Frazier.
January 4, 1992
Tampa Bay drafted Michael Lorenzen in the 7th round in 2010, but the pitcher opted for higher education at the time. The Reds made him a first round pick in 2013. He started 21 games in his rookie season (2015) and moved to the bullpen last season.
Rookie Michael Lorenzen is scheduled to take the mound against the Cubs tonight, going up against Chicago lefty Clayton Richard. Lorenzen is 3-4 with a 3.53 ERA, but has taken a loss in his previous two games. He has faced the Cubs once this year, giving up five earned runs in four-and-one-third innings in Chicago on June 11.
Lorenzen is effective at the plate for a pitcher, hitting .261 with six hits—including a triple—in 23 at-bats. He has been used as a pinch-hitter four times, failing to get a hit in those appearances, and a pinch-runner once. In his pinch-running appearance, Lorenzen scored the game-winning run on a Devin Mesoraco double.
Reds rookie pitcher Michael Lorenzen stepped up yesterday, holding the Pittsburgh Pirates to only three hits over six innings, striking out four batters. It’s a nice rebound for the young pitcher, who was roughed up a little by the Brewers in his first start. Sure, they only scored three runs, but if the Brewers even score once, you should consider yourself roughed up.
TWJ contributor Patrick sent over this “fun card” in the style of the 1961 Baseball Scoops set to commemorate Lorenzen’s first victory.
The first round draft pick for the Reds in 2013, Michael Lorenzen is one of the top pitching prospects in Cincinnati’s farm system. Pitching for the Pensacola Blue Wahoos of the Southern League in 2014, Lorenzen posted a 4-6 record with a 3.13 ERA while striking out 84 batters. While it is doubtful he will debut in Cincinnati right out of spring training, a September call-up is not out of the question for 2015.
A product of Cal State Fullerton, Lorenzen is the youngest of four brothers. The oldest, Jonathan Lorenzen, was a 14th round draft pick in 2000 and pitched in the Dodgers system until Tommy John surgery derailed his dream.
Speaking of surgery, I will not be posting much over the course of the next couple of weeks as I will be recovering from eye surgery. There may be a couple of scheduled posts, but should be back to normal by mid-March if all goes according to plan.
A 6’3 junior from Cal State-Fullerton, Michael Lorenzen was drafted 38th overall in the “Competitive Balance Round A” yesterday by the Cincinnati Reds. TWJ contributor Patrick went back to the 2005 Topps design again for this “fun card.” Here’s the skinny on the right-handed pitcher:
Lorenzen has been on the radar for a while now, having been drafted in the seventh round of the 2010 Draft out of high school by the Tampa Bay Rays. He opted to head to Fullerton instead, and he still has the raw tools and the plus makeup people liked three years ago. The two-time USA Baseball Collegiate Team member hasn’t consistently turned the tools into performance, though. With a Ryan Braun like body type, Lorenzen can flat out play center field, covering gap-to-gap extremely well with a plus arm. He does have some gap power at the plate and he runs well, though he’s better underway. The question is if he’ll hit enough at the next level. He does throw mid-to-upper 90s fastballs as Fullerton’s closer and that could be an “if all else fails” backup plan. Lorenzen didn’t have a great summer numbers-wise, hitting .171 with no extra-base hits and two stolen bases, for USA Baseball’s Collegiate National Team during exhibitions in Cuba and in Honkbal-Haarlem Baseball Week in the Netherlands. He also pitched in three games, picking up a win, a loss and a save. He didn’t allow a hit, but he did allow four walks while striking out one.