Former Junction City Blue Jay Nick Heath has been called up by the Kansas City Royals. The 2012 graduate of Junction City High School has been working his way up through the Royals' minor league system in recent seasons as an outfielder.
The Royals were in Detroit for a game Tuesday night. During his pregame interview Kansas City Manager Mike Matheny was asked about Heath. "He's got a gift, he's got the knack, he's got that first step quickness and then the overall speed to come in and be a huge threat."
Matheny pointed out that making it to the big leagues and the first day for a player is a big deal. "Overcoming odds. The day you decide to be a professional player, whether it's in the first round or you're a free agent it doesn't matter. It's hard to get here. Great to have Nick and he brings a very unique skill set to this team that I believe is going to help us win games."
Nick's mother Kim Milleson got the telephone call from her son that he was being called up to the majors on Monday night. "We are beyond excited and it's still kind of surreal. It's kind of one of those things that you've been waiting for forever, and forever and forever and then it just happens just like that. He was extremely excited and I think he kind of had some tears there, just kind of like when they drafted him.
There was one frustration for Kim and Mike Milleson. They had always planned to attend Nick's first game in the big leagues but could not because of COVID-19. Fans cannot attend the games.