Wright City’s Nate Thomas – Athlete Spotlight Presented By McCurtain County National Bank

When you listen to Nate Thomas talk about baseball you get a feeling that he’s kind of a throwback to a time when athletes viewed sports differently than it seems they do today.  You see it in his introduction to the game and what it is about baseball, the only sport he plays, that he loves.

“I just started playing catch with my dad in the yard when I was three or four years old and moved on to T-ball and kept on playing,” said the senior-to-be. “The thing I love about baseball is there’s no time clock. There’s no way to run the clock out and everybody gets their fair chance.”

As a freshman, Nate was a spot player for the Lumberjax, mostly in a pitching role. He moved to third base his sophomore year as a starter when Wright City won the Class A state championship in the spring. Things changed at the start of this year when it was time for fall ball but Thomas again did was the consummate team player.

“We had a lot of seniors on that championship team so last fall we only had about four starters back.  Coach asked me to move to first base. which was a new position that I had never played before. But I and the new faces we had adjusted and we made it to the finals of regionals, just a game short of going to state again, when we were eliminated.”

Thomas had a lot of friends among those seniors on the title team that served as role models but it was a senior on this year’s team that he pointed to as an example of being a team player.

“I really feel for a guy like Kaden Crosby who didn’t get to play his final season of baseball because of this virus thing. He was a good team player who would play wherever he was needed and by doing so was a guy I really looked up to,” said Thomas who is also active in the Wright City FFA program.

When fall ball starts up, Nate Thomas will be one of the senior leaders of the team. Even in that aspect he would seem to be kind of throwback as a boisterous rah-rah kind of guy that has a handle on dealing with the youngsters.

“I think a good leader builds a young player up and teaches him the right ways of the game without making him feel like he’s beneath you.”

With leaders like Nate Thomas you can probably look for the ‘Jax to be visiting the state tournament at least once next school year.