Guys who throw a baseball 100 mph are hard to find. But the Minnesota Twins just discovered one named Brandon Poulson, who has been pitching for the Healdsburg Prune Packers in a collegiate summer league. Ever heard of them? Neither have we. Poulson went undrafted this summer, and yesterday the Twins scooped him up for $250,000, a pretty hefty contract for someone passed over by 29 other MLB teams.
There is hope for Poulson yet. Here are five other players from across the four major professional sports leagues who went undrafted but still became highly-regarded names in their respective sports.
Earlier this week, Maya Moore took time out of her very busy July schedule to score 48 points — the second most in WNBA history.
On Tuesday night, Moore led her Minnesota Lynx in a double-overtime win against the Atlanta Dream, 112-108. Moore made 16 of 30 attempts and went 7-9 from the three-point line. Her huge night gave her the second highest points total in league history, behind Riquna Williams’ 51 points last season for the Tulsa Shock. (Moore's stat line also included 10 rebounds, four assists, two steals, and one block.)
Her mindset was simple: “If it’s my shot and I’m open, shoot the ball,” Moore said. “If it’s not, pass to an open teammate.”
LeBron James never went to college — he jumped to the NBA straight from high school. But in his essay about why he decided to return to Cleveland, LeBron said his four years in Miami were “almost like college for other kids.”
King James’ time with the Heat was not without its ups and downs, just like a normal college experience. So that got us thinking about what his four years in Miami would look like if here were actually attending college — let’s call it Heat University.
Here’s what we came up with:
It’s already been an eventful NBA offseason, but for the Golden Gate Warriors guard Steph Curry the excitement has just begun. Before heading to FIBA World Cup training camp later this month, Curry headlined perhaps the most intriguing trial of his career – a BOOMco Blaster Challenge against Sacramento Kings guard Rudy Gay.
First: BOOMco is a new line of blasters from the toy company Mattel that debuted earlier this month. The shoot out hollow plastic darts that have an eraser-sized tip made of a special material that will let it stick to targets and parts of blasters and not to walls, windows, or anything else.
To help really launch BOOMco, Steph and Rudy put together teams to compete on the night of the Nickelodeon Kids' Choice Sports Awards to see who get hit the most targets and named the Ultimate Blaster Champion.
Before the challenge, Curry spoke with SI Kids about BOOMco, NBA offseason transactions, and his goals for the 2014 NBA season.
As told to Christina M. Tapper
As a teenager, Mike Conley spent his summers traveling the country and playing hoops with the best of the best. In 2004, he ran the offense for the AAU Spiece Indy Heat, a team with a roster of future NBA stars — Miami Heat center Greg Oden, New Orleans Pelicans guard Eric Gordon, Charlotte Hornets forward Josh McRoberts, and guard Daequan Cook, who played for the Houston Rockets and the Chicago Bulls in 2012–2013 and in Ukraine this season.
Conley, who averaged 17.2 points and 6.0 assists as the Memphis Grizzlies' point guard this year, played 11 years of AAU ball and won five titles as a youngster, but the '04 team brings back his fondest memories. Conley spoke to SI KIDS about the experiences that helped mold his NBA career.
Three weeks after opting out of his contract, Carmelo Anthony is staying in New York. He made the announcement on his website yesterday.
“This organization has supported me and in return, I want to stay and build here with this city and my team,” Melo wrote in an essay titled “My City, My Heart.” “I am looking forward to continuing my career in Orange & Blue, and to working with Phil Jackson, a champion who builds championship teams.”