Tuesday, July 7, 2020

Detroit baseball runs in the family for MSU’s Cam Gibson

June 18, 2015
<p>Sophomore left fielder Cam Gibson high fives teammates while running onto the field before the game against Nebraska on May 11, 2014, at McLane Baseball Stadium at Old College Field. The Cornhuskers defeated the Spartans, 4-1. Danyelle Morrow/The State News</p>

Sophomore left fielder Cam Gibson high fives teammates while running onto the field before the game against Nebraska on May 11, 2014, at McLane Baseball Stadium at Old College Field. The Cornhuskers defeated the Spartans, 4-1. Danyelle Morrow/The State News

Photo by Danyelle Morrow | The State News

Cam Gibson was always a Tiger at heart — even before it became official, when the MSU outfielder was selected by the Detroit Tigers in the fifth round of the draft, with the No. 160 overall pick. 

Gibson’s father, Kirk, is a Detroit legend — Kirk spent 12 seasons with the Tigers, nine from 1979-87 and three more from 1993-95. Kirk, as many know, was a leader on the Tigers 1984 World Series championship team. He was the MVP of the semi finals that year, known as the ALCS in the American league. 

With a father that is so ingrained in the history of the Tigers, a part of Gibson would have always been a Tiger in spirit, but he was also a Tiger before he was drafted by Detroit. 

“I’ve been a Tiger my entire life, not just because of my dad, but when I first started playing baseball, back when I was a little kid in little league, I played for the Tigers,” Gibson said. “It’s just crazy to have this thing come full circle.” 

Gibson has decided to take his opportunity to play professionally and forgo his senior year of college eligibility. This seemed to be the writing on the wall for a few weeks now though, before the draft began the MSU coaching staff was hearing that he would likely be a first day pick between rounds five and 10.

“We thought Cam would go somewhere between the fifth and the 10th round based on what we had been hearing from different organizations,” head coach Jake Boss Jr. said. “Obviously him going at the front end of that was really exciting for him, especially to Detroit.” 

Gibson waited with anticipation for his name to be called and after the initial excitement it was hugs and tears for his family to celebrate the moment. 

“Draft day was a little bit stressful, I was kind of pacing around, laying on the ground,” Gibson said. “At the time I was actually in the other room laying on the ground and I could hear my last name and I shot up and ran into the other room to make sure what I heard was right and then everybody at my house started to scream. 

“I went up to my dad and I gave him a big hug and I gave my mom a hug, she was crying and my brother was trying not to cry.” 

Gibson’s mother gave him some advice to live by as he takes his next step in his playing career. 

“What my mom tells me all the time is go to the field and play like it’s little league, like you’re having fun,” Gibson said. “When I was in little league running around having fun and getting dirty I was a Tiger and now I’m going to be a Tiger again, it’s going to be a lot easier to go out there and have fun.”

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