Brady literally had to toss away the crutches he wielded for two and a half months — starting two days after last Christmas — and learn to run and play ball again in the spring at high school baseball speed.
Along the way, he had to focus on improving himself instead of worrying about the setbacks presented in his life.
Brady said he tore his MCL (medial collaterial ligament) during basketball practice, ending his roundball season and casting doubt about his senior-year participation on one of his school’s best baseball team in years.
“I was thinking I was going to be a starter,” he said, adding he had shared playing duties in left field his junior year and wanted to make it his position as a senior.
Instead, his season started much differently than he had envisioned.
“I was on crutches two and a half months after about a week in bed,” he said.
It meant as the baseball season was getting under way for everyone else, he was working to run again and to regain his ball-playing skills.
Baseball was not a passing fancy for Brady, who played four years at Adairsville High, added to two years in middle school and the years spent in recreation ball.
“Baseball has always been my favorite sport, although I also played football and basketball,” the right-hander said.
But Brady didn’t spend much time worrying about whether he would be a starter, instead he started working to restore his baseball skills.
It wasn’t always easy, especially at first.
“It felt great being able to practice,” he admitted, “but I just was not able to practice for long. The first time I practiced, I could really feel it and I was really sore.”
That passed with time, though.
“But by the end of baseball season, I couldn’t feel any soreness at all,” he said.
Brady said that was lucky for him and he believes he’d regained his speed and was able to contribute to the team: “I felt like I was playing at 100 percent by the end of the season.”
Brady said an important part of his recovery was the fact that his baseball coach let him work his way back onto the field slowly.
“Coach (Eric) Bishop worked me in gradually and I started some games,” he said.
That meant he got to be a part of the Adairsville Tiger team that finished 21-7 with an 18-4 record in its region, garnering home field in the first round of the post season.
“Playing on that team felt good, especially being on our home field during the first round of the playoffs,” he said.
But Brady wanted more than to play baseball his senior year.
“I went to a showcase tryout at Shorter College and did pretty good there,” he said.
In fact, Brady did so well that he was offered a scholarship by Coach Matt Larry.
Larry said the decision to sign Brady was made easier because of how well trained he is, coming through the Adairsville baseball program
“They (Adairsville coaches) do a great job in preparing their players to take the next step in their baseball careers at the college level,” Larry said. “He also comes from a great family.”
The coach said Brady will undergo a position evaluation in the fall and then, like all Shorter ball players, will compete for a starting role.
“Everyone has that opportunity on the team and we are especially glad to sign ballplayers who are from the local area,” he added.
Brady said while playing baseball for the Hawks is his goal, he plans to pursue a college degree in a field that he has gained a lot of experience as of late.
“I want to specialize in sports therapy,” he said. “I’ve learned a lot about it since Christmas.”