Beyond the game: David Paiz, senior infielder

Senior Sports Reporter

When he was 12 years old, David Paiz, senior first baseman, saw the New York Yankees jersey Babe Ruth had worn and the bat Ken Griffey swung as a member of the Cincinnati Reds.

David and his family made the trip to the Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown, New York. The visit happened when David was 12 years old, right after he won the Little League World Series with the Austin Eagles.

“It’s a really great memory,” David said. “I’ll honor it forever.”

His father, David Paiz, Sr., could tell his son was going to be a baseball player. David could hit the ball well at a young age when his father coached him in his tee-ball years.

“He (Paiz, Sr.) was pretty strict growing up,” David said. “He wanted me to be a good person, a good ball player. I think that’s why I’m here—if it wasn’t for him.”

David sat in the stands at the Crockett High School baseball fields in Austin, scouting his older cousin, Jonathan.

Paiz, Sr. took him to see Jonathan’s games where he would hit and throw on the side.

Jonathan began his baseball career when he was eight years old and went on to play Division II baseball for Texas-Beaumont. Jonathan’s experience was vital because he showed David how to became a great baseball player on and off the field.

“I always wanted to kind of be like him (Jonathan),” David said. “He was always there pushing me, showing the things he could have done better, helping me.”

David played baseball at Texas Tech until he left the program during his junior year while still receiving playing time. David wanted to continue playing Division I baseball, something Jonathan always dreamed about but never experienced.

David did not give up and worked hard during the off-season. He earned a spot as a walk-on at Texas State, which resulted in a scholarship offer.  David, a shortstop throughout high school, is pitching and playing first base for Texas State.

“It was a big thing to try to set a good example for him, make sure he played the game the right way,” Jonathan said. “He really worked hard, but he understood what commitment was when he got to college. He doesn’t take the game for granted. He appreciates what he gets to do there.”

Follow Sabrina Flores on Twitter @SabrinaFloresTX.