An afternoon with T.C. Roberson

Do you follow high school baseball at all? If so, there is a good chance that you have heard of T.C. Roberson. Roberson, which is located in Asheville, N.C., is considered one of the more historic baseball programs in the state. Boasting an alumni list that includes Major Leaguers like Cameron Maybin, Chris Narveson and Darren Holmes, it’s easy to understand why.

Do you follow the 2014 MLB amateur draft coverage a little? If so, there is a good chance you have heard of Braxton Davidson, Roberson’s standout first baseman who has the potential to go as high as the first round. He leads a talented, well-coached team that is considered a top contender for the 4A state championship. With such talent, it’s no wonder why USA Baseball invited Roberson to be the host school for the 2014 National High School Invitational (NHSI) for the second year in a row.

This past January, MaxPreps sent me up to Asheville to do a photo shoot with Roberson for their 2014 Top Contenders. Since I covered Roberson during last year’s NHSI, I was already somewhat familiar with the players. However, I did not know exactly what to expect from my afternoon shoot with them. Would the players be comfortable and loose in front of the camera? Would they have fun with it? These are the questions I ask myself before every shoot I do with athletes. You never know what you are going to get.

Well, they crushed it! Even on a cold, windy day, the guys hung out with me for almost 2 hours laughing and carrying on for the camera. It was great!

Can you tell where the jokesters were sitting? I think I have at least one photo of every player making some kind of face or laughing in this general direction.

What stood out the most from my time with Roberson was how close of a team they are. They know each other well and support one another. They really are a team, and that makes it all the more fun to watch them play.

This passed weekend, I was in Asheville to cover Roberson’s game against their rival, North Buncombe. You know the one thing I didn’t hear the entire game? A quiet dugout. Even when the team was on the field, those in the dugout were up and rooting their team on. That enthusiasm is contagious! It’s hard not to root for them yourself.

Tomorrow, T.C. Roberson will kick off the 2014 National High School Invitational when they take the field against Huntsville (Ala.) at the USA Baseball Training Complex in Cary, N.C. If you are around the area this week, come on over and take in one of Roberson’s four games. You won’t be sorry you did.

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