It’s rare to find a team in major league baseball with players who have an assortment of impressive educational backgrounds. The Washington Nationals have an unusual collection of players who have extraordinary degrees and some from Ivy League schools.
Pitchers Chris Young and Ross Ohlendorf are Princeton graduates with degrees in political science and operations research and finical engineering. Pitching prospect Erik Davis, a Stanford graduate, spent four years offseason analyzing crime statistics at his hometown police department, according to The Washington Post.
A Fox Sports survey last season found that only 39 major leaguers, or 4.3 percent, graduated from four-year universities. Many do not graduate college or even go to college because they are drafted either before or during their college career.
First-round picks Drew Storen and Ryan Zimmerman began at Stanford and the University of Virginia before leaving early for baseball. Will Rhymes, Bill Bray and Ryan Mattheus also left college to begin their training as stated in The Washington Post.
Questions are raised as players argue that the Nationals have developed critical analysis skills, which are helpful in their success.
“People might say I’m analytical when it comes to my preparation as far as scouting reports, studying video and looking at the numbers and stats and stuff,” said Young, who signed with the Nationals three weeks ago to serve as starting rotation depth. “But I’d say that’s really the only way. I try to be a baseball player and be one of the guys.”