Check out the story of how Lucas Harrell went from Glendale high school all the way to the major leagues in the latest The Houses We Grew Up In!
After striking out Derek Jeter on three pitches with two on in a close game, Lucas Harrell immediately thought about his dad. It was the height of Jeter’s Hall of Fame career and Harrell, a kid from Springfield, had just struck him out. He thought about how he could now tell his dad that he’d K’ed the Yankees star. Lost in the moment, Harrell caught the ball from catcher A.J. Pierzinski and realized he still had to get another out before he could celebrate!
Flash back to the early 2000s, Harrell was a high schooler in the Glendale School District. He had always been a confident kid with dreams of playing in the big leagues. He told us he once told a teacher he didn’t need to learn spelling because he was going to play baseball. Well, he did learn spelling, but he also learned how to play baseball in the back yard of his childhood home. His dad would hit ground balls to him for hours. They’d work on the fundamentals until they couldn’t feel their faces from the cold or until Lucas’s mother would finally insist they come in for supper from the kitchen window overlooking the yard.
Lucas joined us in returning to the place where he grew up right here in Springfield. The memories immediately flooded back into his mind when he entered the home. He recalled a sizable dent in the drywall near the entry as a place where he and his dad wrestled that came to be known as the “butt crack” due to the senior Harrell’s hind end causing the divot. He remembered playing basketball on a toy goal as a toddler in the upstairs living area. He also remembered the first Christmas tree he ever had, which is now planted in the front yard of the home.
Harrell, who now lives in St. Petersburg, Florida, says he misses lots of things about living in Springfield. “People don’t stop and say hello everywhere, and any time I’m back (in Springfield), it’s nice to be around good people,” he said. Harrell is currently a free agent, but he said he still has a few tricks up his sleeve for clubs that are interested. He also mentioned the possibility of returning to Springfield in the future and starting a baseball camp for youngsters.
Wherever he ends up, we’re sure Harrell’s contagious energy and positive outlook will land him on his feet. We appreciate him taking his time to share the stories of his youth in this great city. Just like Harrell, Springfield will always be our home and it holds a special place in our hearts.