Tribe's Tim Drew Thankful For Opportunity
by Matthias R. Monschein
Tim Drew has been a minor league pitcher with the Cleveland Indians organization since being drafted in 1997. He and his brother J.D., who currently plays for the Saint Louis Cardinals, were the first brother duo to be selected in the 1st round of an amateur draft. He was drafted with high expectations and four years later, finds himself struggling to take the mound in the Tribe's starting rotation.
Tim Drew, trying to make the transition from the minors to the mojors.
"I know that God has brought me here for a reason. Whatever I go through happens for a reason. All I can do is go out there and give 110% and glorify him by doing it. God is sovereign and whatever he decides to do with me I am going to be happy with because I know it is up to him."
Even though Tim is seen as only a rookie pitcher with a lot to learn from the veterans he has taken on a much different role in the clubhouse as a spiritually centered man willing to do what ever it will take to proclaim the gospel of Jesus Christ.
Tim has only been in professional baseball four short years but right from the start he soon discovered the importance of having Christian friends and family that share the same beliefs as he does.
The average professional baseball player will tell you that they value the friendships they make on the team. They, in many respects are just as important to a person as their own family. When you consider a 162 game season, all of those long road trips and a month and a half of spring training in Florida, they will spend more than half of the year away from their family. That is why it is so important to build these relationships because they become your family away from home.
"It is definitely an important thing to have those people surrounding you." says Drew "The Cleveland Indians have quite a strong nucleus of guys in the clubhouse that are strong Christians. Juan Gonzalez, Paul Shuey, Steve Reed, Travis Fryman, Kenny Lofton and Eddie Taubensee are just a few that come to mind. It is very good when you have the same Christian values because we can all relate in certain instances when we are having hard times. Because we all have a higher calling and that is in our Savior Jesus Christ."
When God has a plan for a person's life, the timing is perfect and everything falls right into place just how God wanted it to be. Tim's story is a good example. His rise to the Major Leagues has been relatively fast. Four years after being drafted by the Tribe.
Tim will be the first one to tell you that God has blessed the progress of his career right from the beginning. He advanced through all of the different stages of the minors. It took four short years but God's hand was with him every step of the way.
"There is a prayer that comes out of the book of Chronicles called the Jabez Prayer. This prayer is responsible for countless blessings in my life. It is just one little verse out of 1 Chronicles 4:10 and it says:
"And Jabez cried on the God of Israel saying, "Oh that you would bless me indeed, and enlarge my territory, that your hand may be with me, and you would keep me from evil, that I may not cause pain!" so God granted him what he requested."
It's been an exciting thing to watch. As I traveled around this past off-season, I had a chance to share my testimony at many different churches in different states around where I live. No matter where I went, I could really see God's hand at work. When I arrived at spring training I already knew that I was going to be happy wherever I ended up. Making the team and getting the chance to pitch in the starting rotation was definitely God's way of blessing me and spreading my territory at the same time."
One of Tim's closest friends in the Tribe clubhouse is catcher Eddie Taubensee. Eddie and Tim see a lot of things alike and share a lot of the same philosophies. One of the most common things that you will see from them is, that they both see themselves as servants to the team in order to share the saving knowledge of Jesus Christ.
"We have been able to have bible studies together and challenge ourselves to memorize a certain Bible verse but we both want to be there for our teammates too. That is what a true teammate is. You encourage them, help them to succeed and do well. If I can help them in any area, we let our team mates know that we are there for them and in turn I know that they would do the same for us."
It says in the book of Romans 12:15 "Rejoice with those who rejoice; mourn with those who mourn." It has been my experience that the real successes that Tim speaks of is not only the kind won at Jacobs Field, but in their faith as well. The bottom line is that it always takes people who can rejoice in the successes of others. Tim Drew is one of those people who is not only happy for what God has done for him but is more happy when he can see God working successes in other people. He is not sure what the 2002 season will bring for him but you can be sure of one thing, no matter where he goes or what he will do, God is always there through it all and will bless him infinitely for it.