Former South Dade infielder Willy Escala has decided to transfer from the Miami Hurricanes after two seasons.
“It was probably the toughest decision I’ve had to make in my life,” Escala said. “It’s your whole baseball career going into full effect.
Of course growing up in Miami I wanted to be a hometown kid playing at the University of Miami and get to represent the city.”
Escala is coming off a sophomore season where he saw his role lessen with starting 15 games after starting 53 as a freshman.
“I just thought this was my best decision right now because I wanted to get a little bit more playing time and I just didn’t see that happening,” Escala said.
Escala leaves the Hurricanes with a .274 batting average with 11 doubles, one triple, two home runs, 19 RBIs, and 15 stolen bases in 93 games.
“I loved single moment of it to be honest,” Escala said. “Even this year is when I probably grew closer to my teammates just because I was going through a tougher time. That was one of the things that was really hard for me. I loved my coaches, Gabe (Brian Gabriel), G.M. (Robert McDaniel), and my teammates, and I think coming to the decision to leave--you’re never really going to play with these guys again unless you play in summer ball or if one day we make it to the minors or the pros we might see each other again, but definitely leaving was a tough thing to do. Going to Miami was probably the best experience. I definitely got to live out my dream of playing at UM and I’m very thankful for the opportunity I got to play there.”
Escala will be sorting out his next college destination while playing in the Cape Cod Baseball League this summer with the Yarmouth-Dennis Red Sox.
“I’m very excited just to get an opportunity to come over to the Cape to one of the best leagues out here in the country,” Escala said. “I got a chance and I’m trying to make the most of it. I’m just going to have fun as always like my time at UM, especially this year, whenever I got an opportunity I tried to make the most of it. I tried to have fun and I think that’s what will help me here. I’m going to go have fun, play my game, and I’m always excited to be on the baseball field. I love the game so any chance I get to play it I’m definitely going to take full advantage of it.”
Escala started games at second base, shortstop, third base, and right field while at Miami, but is hoping to play shortstop at his next school.
“I’ve always loved playing shortstop,” Escala said. “I think playing at UM gave me the best chance to learn how to play other positions. I think moving around will help me out here in the Cape to get better looks and better chances to stay on the team for a longer time.”