Small and mighty Sam: Eagles dedicate their season to coach's so - - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

Small and mighty Sam: Eagles dedicate their season to coach's son

Source: KLTV staff Source: KLTV staff

Sam Martinez is a nine-month old East Texan and the driving force behind the New Diana baseball team. 

"I had a son born in August, and he was born with some complications," said Bernie Martinez,  New Diana Eagles head baseball coach.

baseball with charge syndrome, Sam is legally blind. Meaning he will never be able to watch the game his father has coached for 21 years. 

"I try not to dwell on what he cant do and focus on what he can. Hopefully his mind, which is an amazing thin, can paint those pictures for him," said Coach Martinez.

With a new appreciation for sight, health, and the simple ability to take the field these young men have decided to play for something more than wins or titles. 

"When we dedicated the season to Sam we stayed focused on just playing baseball right. I feel very blessed  just to come out here and play baseball. I don't care if I sit the bench or I start. Just to be out here and be able to say I play baseball for New Diana is just great," said Kyle Meshell, senior Eagle outfielder and pitcher. 

"It gives us something else to play for. Every time we get to suit up, practice, or a game. Every swing we get to take, every pitch I get to throw, every ground ball I get I'm grateful for it," said Tristan Swain, senior Eagle pitcher. 

"It's his fight, it's his drive. Whatever the doctors tell him, coach always looks optimistic about it. Then Sam finds a way to fight through it and beat the odds. So as he has that fighters mentality, so do we," said Jordan Stroud, senior Eagle infielder. 

The Eagles are surrounded by many mantras, words of encouragement.  But I think it's safe to say small and mighty Sam will be the one thing that stays with them through their baseball careers and beyond. 

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