4 August 2006

McGuire finds a home in Hyannis

Last year, Boston College slugger Jared McGuire played his summer ball in Alaska, but this year the Harwich native has come home to play ball in the Cape Cod League for Hyannis. 

Jared McGuire is comfortable under his Hyannis Metsí cap.
  (Eich Eldred photo)

"Itís good to be at home and playing in a prestige league," McGuire said. "Itís been a good experience playing with the best college players in the country. 

McGuire completed his third year at Boston College this spring and is having a fine year with the Mets. Heís batting .272 with two homers and 15 RBI. He is second on the team in slugging percentage at .368, and has seven doubles to go with four steals. McGuire has only two errors in 36 games in the outfield. 

"Every kid growing up dreams of playing in the Cape League," he said. "I got the opportunity to play Division I ball at BC, and I was fortunate to play here also. Iím lucky to be here and to be part of it." 

As a sophomore at BC, McGuire led the Big East in hitting with a .397 average. He hit six homers, stole 27 bases and knocked in 41 runs. Last year, BC switched to the Atlantic Coast Conference and the team struggled. McGuireís average dropped to .264, fifth on the team. He hit three homers and knocked in 37 runs. 

McGuire has rebounded with a solid Cape League summer, and said the best thing has been his family being here. 

"Last year, I was in Alaska. BC had a lot of traveling this year," he said. "So itís nice to have them here. Itís like it was high school with them at the games." 

His old high school team, Harwich High, won the state Division 3 title under coach Fred Thacher this year. With McGuire and Cody Crowell, whoís pitching for the Brewster Whitecaps this summer, on the Rough Riders they were three time south sectional finalists but never made it to the state championship. 

"Iím pleased, but Iím not very surprised," McGuire said. "They had talented guys. I played with Ryan Soares when I was a senior, and he was already a Division 1 caliber player as a freshman. So Iím not very surprised they won it." 

McGuire got to use wood bats for one year at Harwich High when the South Shore League adopted them. But playing in the Cape League should boost McGuireís next spring at BC. 

"Playing in this league day in, day out, youíre facing what we call in college a weekend ace," he said. "The pitching is good. Here, youíre up and down. Kids are hitting .350 in college; they come here and they are hitting .220. You see more failure here. But overall Iím pleased. Iím hitting around .270 now and hopefully Iíll continue that over the last five games or so." 

McGuire is looking forward to his senior year at Boston College. 

"The past year was our first in the ACC and we were young and didnít have a good year. Hopefully, weíll have a better year and get into the regionals and then Iíll get drafted and continue on in baseball," McGuire said. "The pitching is a little bit better (in the ACC); they have guys who throw harder than in the Big East." 

 By Rich Eldred/ reldred@cnc.com