OMAHA, Neb. — Baseball great Roger Clemens spent Monday re-living some memories as he watched his son Kacy play first base for Texas at the College World Series.
Clemens pitched for the Longhorns in the CWS in 1982 and ‘83, winning the national title the second time. He went on to win the Cy Young Award seven times and world championships twice but never forgot his days wearing the burnt orange.
Before the CWS, Roger said, he told Kacy to appreciate the accomplishment of simply making it to Omaha.
“I told him to try to pick your head up away from the park and look at everything going on and enjoy the sights and sounds and smells of everything,” he said. “And then when the lights are the brightest, try to focus on what you’re doing and take that in and try to slow the game.”
Rogers said he doesn’t meddle in his sons’ baseball endeavors. In addition to Kacy at Texas, Koby Clemens plays in an independent pro league, and Kody Clemens was a standout high school shortstop.
“I’m just Dad to them. I’m not the ‘Rocket.’ And that’s the way I go about it,” Roger said. “I give them little tips. If they come to me for detailed information, I give it to them.... Koby once was asked if his last name helps you or gives you opportunities, and Koby said absolutely not. He said, ‘My play helps me get opportunities.’ So it’s a good answer.”
ESPN’s 35th year at CWS: While some people in college baseball are concerned the entertainment value suffers because of a shortage of offense, ESPN officials say they are as committed as ever to the sport.
“It’s not just an audience play for us. We feel like baseball is a healthy and growing sport and the more exposure we give it, then the higher the audiences is going to become year over year,” ESPN director of programming and acquisitions Brent Colborne said.