ALTOONA– We’ve seen and heard all of the stories on Drew Maggi since his call-up to the majors and actually getting in a game for the first time in his 13 years of trudging in the minors.
One of the many reasons it’s a feel-good story is Maggi was originally drafted by the Pittsburgh Pirates, and to do it with your original team brings some sort of wholesome moment to an already good story.
On April 29, Maggi was in his third ever pinch hit situation in the majors, and he made the most of it with an RBI single off Hobie Harris of the Washington Nationals.
That moment will forever be etched in Maggi’s memory, and since that moment, Maggi has been bombarded with national exposure and even started getting his own merchandise.
“There were so many different emotions,” said Maggi on his first hit. “A lot of it was happiness, and a lot of weight was lifted off of my shoulders. I felt grateful and shocked, like, ‘Is this really happening’ It was a really good feeling inside, and I’m kind of proud of myself. It was really cool knowing my family had the chance to watch it. To have something that big and important under my belt is important to me. It’s something I can carry out the rest of my life and career.”
We then transitioned into what the experience of getting called up meant to him and what can this experience do for him to help the younger players in Altoona.
“The experience was crazy, and it was everything I could’ve asked for. With the city of Pittsburgh behind me, my family was there, and I was finally able to get that accomplishment under my belt and feel like a big leaguer. Now I come back [to Altoona] with a lot of guys and a lot of talent here. A lot of these guys are going to play in the big leagues, so that short little experience and being able to push that knowledge on to the younger group is special. I’m just trying to give them little tidbits here and there and my knowledge from being in the minors for 13 years.”
When you’re a young man or woman, you have dreams, goals, and aspirations. As you get older, some of those plans can go awry, and even what were your goals turn into pipe dreams.
Does someone like Maggi ever look back on his life/career and think maybe they would’ve done anything differently?
“I think now, no, I wouldn’t change anything. I think that everything was supposed to happen this way, and I know it sounds crazy and weird, but I think that my path and my journey was the road I needed to take for me personally. I feel good about it, it fits my personality, I’m a grinder, blue-collar kind of head-down personality. There are a lot of guys who played 10+ years in the minors and never got the chance, so I feel like I’m playing for more than just me at this point.”
No one likes to think about the end of their career, and Maggi is no exception, but what exactly would Maggi like to do once his baseball career is done?
“I definitely want to give back to the game eventually, I don’t know about right away. I feel like I got a good amount of time left, and my body feels healthy, but afterward, I’d love to come back to manage one day. This has opened up a lot of opportunities for me. I’m just focused on getting back up to the majors and helping the Pittsburgh Pirates win.”
Maggi is definitely a testament to never giving up on your dreams and always shooting for the stars.