What's Buzzing:

Prep Rally

Shaq Thompson, one of top 2012 football recruits, struck out 25 times in first 26 professional at-bats

Prep Rally

Sacramento (Calif.) Grant High football star Shaq Thompson was one of the nation's top prospects throughout his junior and senior seasons. The nation's No. 4 overall recruit in the Class of 2012, Thompson led the Pacers deep into the state playoffs and eventually signed with Washington as arguably the most ballyhooed recruit in a top notch Huskies incoming class. Months later, he went on to star for the Grant baseball team, even though he had hardly touched a bat or glove for two seasons.

View photo

.
Grant safety Shaq Thompson at his U.S. Army All-American Game jersey ceremony

Grant safety Shaq Thompson at his U.S. Army All-American Game jersey ceremony

It was an inspiring return to the superstar athlete's second sport, one which showcased his athleticism so well that it helped earn him a spot in the draft class of the Boston Red Sox, who selected the recent Grant graduate in the 18th round of the 2012 entry draft. A little more than a week later, Thompson signed with the Red Sox, officially beginning his professional career in baseball long before he'll get a chance to do so on the gridiron (if his Washington career goes to plan).

Well, now Thompson will be hoping that his pro football career gets off to a much better start than his intro to life on the diamond. Competing for a short-season Gulf Coast League squad in Florida, Thompson has opened up with one of the worst stretches of first weeks in professional baseball history. As noted by the Sacramento Bee, through his first 26 official at-bats in Florida, the former Grant star had 0 hits and a whopping 25 strikeouts.

[Related: Top football recruit Jalen Ramsey picks USC over Vanderbilt]

In fact, the best result Thompson had mustered during his first nine games was a meek groundout to first base, as elementary an out as possible. Prep Rally couldn't find adequate data of the worst minor-league starts in baseball history, but suffice it to say that Thompson's 25 strikeouts would make the list.

The Bee reported that Thompson has struck out more than three times in seven of his first nine games, proof that he's happy to keep swinging away, if nothing else.

Of course, all of this is rough news for the Red Sox, who wouldn't have been counting on Thompson making an impact any time in the near future, but were optimistic about his potential based on his stunning athletic gifts. Yet, as rough as it may be for Boston fans to watch, Washington football officials might quietly be thrilled that a superstar they anticipated having focused only on their program may be more likely to do just that in the coming years. After all, no one wants to bat .000 and whiff 96 percent of the time they come to the plate.

Still, Thompson is a determined, committed athlete with the kind of athleticism that comes along only once in a rare while. He's also supremely confident in his own ability. If anyone could turn an 0-for-26 start into a future MLB career, it might be him. If nothing else, landing in Boston or another MLB city down the road would make Thompson's rise an even better story than his surprising draft selection.

Want more on the best stories in high school sports? Visit RivalsHigh or connect with Prep Rally on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Elite Athlete Workouts

Other popular content on the Yahoo! network:
Padres steal home -- twice on same play -- to beat Dodgers
Watch: Kobe Bryant tells Y! Sports he expects to retire after two more seasons
Last-minute problems plaguing London Olympic organizers
Y! Homes: Seven steps you can take to prepare for disaster

View Comments (333)
  • Rocco Mediate hangs onto Senior PGA Championship lead

    Rocco Mediate shot an even-par 71 in tricky wind conditions Saturday in the Senior PGA Championship to take a two-stroke lead over two-time defending champion Colin Montgomerie into the final round. Four strokes ahead at a tournament-record 14 … More »

    AP - Sports - 6 minutes ago
  • Royals score 7 in 9th to beat White Sox 8-7; Perez hurt

    Royals score 7 in 9th to beat White Sox 8-7; Perez hurt

    KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) -- Brett Eibner's single capped the biggest ninth-inning comeback in Kansas City Royals history, a seven-run rally off David Robertson and Tommy Kahnle that lifted the World Series champions over the Chicago White Sox 8-7 … More »

    AP - Sports - 7 minutes ago
  • The Latest: Real Madrid celebrate with Champs League win

    The Latest: Real Madrid celebrate with Champs League win

    Silver confetti is floating in the air above the San Siro pitch after raining down on the Real Madrid players as they lifted the Champions League trophy. ''Penalties are always a lottery,'' said Cristiano Ronaldo on BT Sport, shortly after scoring … More »

    AP - Sports - 9 minutes ago
  • NBA player Bryce Dejean-Jones killed in Dallas shooting

    NBA player Bryce Dejean-Jones killed in Dallas shooting

    (Reuters) - Rookie New Orleans Pelicans basketball player Bryce Dejean-Jones died after being shot early on Saturday in a Dallas apartment, police said. The National Basketball Association team issued a statement confirming the 23-year-old shooting … More »

    Reuters - 13 minutes ago
  • Fastest seat in sport provides Indy 500 joyride

    By Steve Keating INDIANAPOLIS (Reuters) - It is billed as the 'Fastest Seat in Sports' and after a breath-taking 180 miles per hour (290 km per hour) two-lap tour of the Indianapolis Motor Speedway (IMS) with Mario Andretti behind the wheel, there … More »

    Reuters - 14 minutes ago