Holland Christian alum Chris Mokma got a small taste of professional baseball last summer after being drafted by the Miami Marlins.
"It is everything you could dream of," Chris said. "You are playing against the best players in the world even though it is rookie ball it is the lowest level but it’s still the top one percent of baseball players in the world and you get to play against them.”
His older brother Mike went to Michigan State for three years but also signed to play pro ball last summer in the Los Angeles Dodgers organization. Mike had elbow surgery last year and hasn't thrown competitively since March of 2019.
“That competitive edge has been there for awhile," Mike said. "I was getting juiced to get back because I was just at 100 percent and I was ready to go especially being my first year in pro ball so I was really excited for that but this stuff happens so you just have to adjust.”
Mike and Chris are doing the best they can still throwing four times a week. When they were sent home in March, Chris was in the process of working on his curveball and that continues.
“They want me to develop a put away pitch because I never really had that or needed it in high school," Chris said. "So definitely working on refining a breaking ball, making a sharp breaking ball a pitch that can put guys away.”
Mike and Chris remain in contact with coaches in their organizations and the mental approach to this break is a major part of the conversations.
“The difference is when you are at pro ball you have to stay locked in one hundred percent," Mike said. "When you are here your brain floats because you have so much extra time so really figuring out a schedule and staying on that schedule, keeping your routine it helps you a lot.”
Workouts and bullpens with no game can become mundane but these guys just want to be ready whenever they get the chance to return to baseball.
“It is kind of translating into what last year almost was," Chris said. "Take away the high school season just kind of the preparation from June to when I reported in July it is kind of like that preparation, three or four months long just a little bit longer than it was last year.”