Jared Barnes loves baseball, and like many, he’s pursuing a dream of working in the sport he’s always loved.
Noontime Sports caught up with the former Wheaton College alum recently to talk about his love for the sport, as well as his current journey, which has landed him in Texas with the Rangers as baseball operations intern. Jared was so kind to share his story, along with provide insight on what it’s like to work in baseball, too.
1.) Going way back, way before Wheaton College, what was one of your first and fondest memories about the sport of baseball? Was there a moment from your youth that sticks out?
The first baseball memory that comes to mind for me is always my first trip to Fenway Park with my Dad in July of 1994. We sat five rows directly behind the Red Sox on-deck circle and it was my first real exposure to the game at the highest level. Ever since I think anyone who knows me can attest that baseball has been a pretty big part of my life.
It had always been my hope while growing up to play professionally, but unfortunately for many of us the game ends before reaching that point. Yet, a lot of my family memories are focused around the game of baseball. Family vacations were always spent at my baseball tournaments, and my Dad always devoted a lot of time to helping me workout and get better in the offseason. I had a lot of great experiences playing the game and was able to do so thanks to many sacrifices my parents made.
2.) What are some of your favorite memories about playing baseball for Wheaton College? Correct me if I’m wrong, but you were on the team that made it to the World Series in ’06, right?
I was a freshman on the 2006 team that went to the Division III World Series, and baseball-wise it’s tough to top that week. It’s an experience I will never forget and I was really fortunate to come in as a freshman and be a part of that team’s success. That’s something I will always be able to say I was a part of and is pretty special to me. It brought back a lot of memories watching Wheaton’s run to the national title game again this season, and was a really proud moment for a lot of the alums of the program.
Looking back though a lot of my favorite memories are the day-to-day occurrences that are a part of building a team and an identity each year. The bus rides, early morning sprint workouts, and lifelong friendships I formed with teammates are the special aspects of being a student-athlete, and I think anyone that played a collegiate sport misses some of that every day once it’s over.