James Attwood wrote an excellent profile of Shea Langeliers. It inspired me to add something – a perspective based on mental strength. What follows is a quick look at the mental strengths of Shea Langeliers.
1. Best prospects do one thing extremely well – showing the “right stuff.” Almost certainly, the “right stuff” included a mental state called being in-the-zone or in-the-flow.
His defense at catcher is “elite”. He has the “right stuff”
- He is “Just unbelievable talent behind the plate.”— Baylor head coach Steve Rodriguez
- “…he has been lauded for his leadership and rapport with his pitchers.” — James Atwood
- He won ABCA Gold Glove award for 2018.
- Langeliers is extremely good at throwing out runners stealing second base. Early in the season (23 April 2019) he had thrown out 11 base-stealers. During workouts, his pop-time to second base was timed at 1.7 seconds.
2. Best prospects are perceptive and flexible enough to adjust their play to different situations. Almost certainly, extreme focus was required.
He is flexible in positions played: “There’s also an aspect of his game that a lot of people don’t get to see in that he is probably one of the most athletic guys on the field. I can put him in left, I can put him at first. I can probably put him at third or in center and he’s going to do just fine…Most people don’t realize he runs a 6.7 (60-yard dash)…” — Baylor head coach Steve Rodriguez
He can hit for homers or hit line drives to every part of the field: “For myself, it’s just being able to spray the ball, hitting-wise, anywhere on the field. Hitting the baseball wherever it’s pitched and not trying to overdo (it) or try to get an extra-base hit sometimes. It’s just get the barrel to the baseball.” — Shea Langeliers
3. Every day, best prospects practice and think about how to get better. Almost certainly, best prospects value preparation highly because preparation is a prerequisite for success in the Majors.
In his sophomore season, Shea Langeliers “struggled” at the plate. He practiced and greatly improved his swing. ”It took a while for Shea to get his timing down and he has really worked on his swing,…” — Baylor head coach Steve Rodriguez
4. Best prospects never stop working hard and getting better. They do not let success make themselves comfortable. They never stop developing new pitches, new approaches to hitting and fielding. Nevertheless, don’t under-rate players who develop in different ways and develop at a slower rate.
“I was relaxing more at the plate and being content with hitting a line drive up the middle of the field instead of hitting a homer.” — Shea Langeliers. Please note he said “content,” not “comfortable.” If he discovers more opportunities to hit homers, no doubt he will do it!
5. Although best prospects have high-rated tools, they also have projectability. They have characteristics that indicate they could get better (mental strengths, physical size, athleticism, overcame injury).
He knows mental strength is important! “Baseball is a game of failure and it’s very mentally tough to stay strong in this game.” — Shea Langeliers
He has the right attitude and approach. “But both of those guys [Langeliers and Thomas] in the middle of our lineup bring a pretty special offensive power and attitude and approach that opposing teams really have to figure out and be careful of what they’re doing.” — Baylor head coach Steve Rodriguez
When interviewed by Fox Sports in 2018, Shea Langeliers said the team mottos were being relentless, being resilient, and never giving up. I believe he walks his talk. Also, he said “That special bond [with the players on the team] is what carries you.” That bond is another good sign because that’s part of being a great teammate.
He overcame an injury which shows mental strength. “…[Langeliers] turned things around well his in his Junior year, despite missing a good portion of time due to a hamate bone fracture.” — James Atwood
6. Best prospects dominate against good and bad teams. They do not play at the competition’s level. When playing baseball, their intensity and decisiveness are always on display.
Langeliers intensity and decisiveness were on display on 23 April 2019 when Baylor beat the Lumberjacks 10-0. In that game, Langeliers tied his career high with four RBIs. He clearly did not play down to the level of his competition.
Langeliers’ team, the Baylor Bears, won the Big 12 Conference Tournament title in 2018, their first conference tournament championship since 1993. Shea Langeliers was named Co-MVP of the Big 12 Tournament. He played extraordinarily well at a high level of competition.