Alex Wood is not having a tough time finding opportunities. But making a decision about which opportunity to take is becoming tougher for the Steamboat Springs High School senior.
Wood already has preferred walk-on spots for football at the University of Colorado, Colorado State University and Kansas State University, among other options to play football at smaller schools.
But his options grew exponentially Saturday.
The three-sport athlete attended the Pro Showcase Instructional League Baseball Camp in Denver. The camp brought some of the top high school baseball players west of the Mississippi together. In front of more than 200 Major League Baseball scouts and college coaches from across the nation, each pitcher was given seven minutes to throw on one of four mounds.
Wood said coaches had players throw fastballs and breaking balls. Wood, who finished last year 2-3 with two one-run losses, said his fastball consistently sat at 84 mph and even touched 87 mph a couple of times.
After the seven-minute tryout, scouts and coaches could talk to the players. Wood talked to members of the Atlanta Braves, Colorado Rockies and New York Yankees organizations, as well as coaches from the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, University of Nevada and University of Nebraska.
While he was told there is an outside chance a Major League team could take a chance on him in the draft, he said he's been told that after a couple of years playing college baseball, his draft stock greatly would improve.
"They said I've got exactly what they want in a pitcher," said Wood, noting he was told by refining his mechanics he could get his fastball into the low 90s. "I'm rough around the edges, but I have size and the athletic build on me. One of the coaches came up and said baseball is my biggest chance. I'd love to play baseball in college, but it's tough starting this late and getting into a program."
Wood has been working on his mechanics and arm strength twice a week. While he's keeping all of his options open, the idea of playing baseball is intriguing.
Given Wood's size, his relative inexperience in the game and the fact he is left-handed, his future might be best served playing baseball.
"He has all the checks in the right boxes," said Harvey Lyon, who has been working with Wood and played baseball at the U.S. Naval Academy. "Heck, if I was a Division I or Division II coach, I'd look at him. : He's just begun to scratch the surface of his potential."
Although Wood said he probably wouldn't make a decision about his future until April, he's relishing the fact he has the opportunity to continue playing sports after high school.
"I feel good I have these options. It opens more doors," Wood said. "With anything, more options are always better."