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Duce Robinson getting advice from Kyler Murray

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Duce Robinson getting advice from Kyler Murray

\n”,”providerName”:”Twitter”,”providerUrl”:”https://twitter.com”,”type”:”oembed”,”width”:550,”contentType”:”rich”},{“__typename”:”Markdown”,”content”:”Robinson, 18, is already practicing football under USC head coach Lincoln Riley. During Riley’s tenure at Oklahoma, he coached current Arizona Cardinals quarterback Kyler Murray, taken by the A’s in the first round of the 2018 MLB Draft and selected No. 1 by Arizona in 2019.\n\nMurray, a Heisman Award winner, was the first to play in the prestigious Under Armour All-American Game in football and baseball. Robinson, who was the fifth, had the chance to meet Murray during a recruiting trip to Oklahoma, and Murray had plenty of advice to offer during their 20-minute conversation.\n\n“He was straight up with us,” Robinson said. “He told us, ‘It’s going to be difficult. There are going to be days wondering whether or not you want to do this, but in the end, just have fun. Make sure you enjoy it.’”\n\nRiley is supportive of Robinson’s desire to pursue both sports professionally.\n\n“He’s doing everything in his power to help me get there,” Robinson said. “It’s huge when your head coach has enough trust in you as a football player to also push for you to play baseball professionally.”\n\nRobinson’s love for baseball grew when he was a young boy in McKinney, Texas. His favorite memories are going to games at Rangers Ballpark in Arlington during the Rangers’ 2010 and ‘11 seasons, when they appeared in back-to-back World Series. His favorite player was infielder Ian Kinsler.\n\nWhen he wasn’t at Rangers games, he was at the field taking batting practice, catching fly balls and running the bases with his dad.\n\nIt was nearly impossible to keep him off the field.\n\n“You can keep a 5-year-old’s attention for 30 minutes. He would be an hour and a half in and be asking for more,” Dominic said. “That was when I went, ‘OK, this is very different.’ I remember telling my wife, ‘I’m not saying that this means he’s gonna be a professional or anything like that, but I’m telling you right now, this kid’s level of obsession with this sport is not normal.’”\n\nRobinson is a busy young man, and while chasing his dream of being a two-sport professional requires a lot of commitment, he credits the people around him who keep him on the right track. One of them is Donnie Ecker, the bench coach for the Rangers, who compares Robinson with Aaron Judge.\n\n“Donnie is like my big brother,” Robinson said. “I can text him at any point and he’ll respond right away. He’s helped me work through a bunch of stuff in my swing and just in life. He’s helped me a lot.”\n\nBaseball and football certainly have their differences, but as Robinson has learned over the years, there is one factor that will have you succeed in both, and he oozes that.\n\n“I feel like athleticism is key in any sport you play,” he said. “It feels like guys who will excel the most in both sports are usually, for the most part, the most athletic guys on the field. Plus, the guys who are passionate about the game who love the game.””,”type”:”text”}],”contentType”:”news”,”subHeadline”:null,”summary”:”PHOENIX — You don’t need a crystal ball to predict that Duce Robinson’s future is as a professional athlete.\nThe only question might be … in which sport?”,”tagline({\”formatString\”:\”none\”})”:null,”tags”:[{“__typename”:”InternalTag”,”slug”:”storytype-article”,”title”:”Article”,”type”:”article”},{“__typename”:”ContributorTag”,”slug”:”jesus-cano”,”title”:”Jesús Cano”,”type”:”contributor”},{“__typename”:”TaxonomyTag”,”slug”:”apple-news”,”title”:”Apple News”,”type”:”taxonomy”},{“__typename”:”TaxonomyTag”,”slug”:”mlb-combine”,”title”:”MLB Combine”,”type”:”taxonomy”},{“__typename”:”TaxonomyTag”,”slug”:”mlb-draft”,”title”:”MLB Draft”,”type”:”taxonomy”}],”type”:”story”,”thumbnail”:”https://img.mlbstatic.com/mlb-images/image/upload/{formatInstructions}/mlb/ums4ubo64a75xhp2o87o”,”title”:”Duce Robinson getting advice from Kyler Murray”}}}}
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34 minutes ago

PHOENIX — You don’t need a crystal ball to predict that Duce Robinson’s future is as a professional athlete.

The only question might be … in which sport?

The 6-foot-6-inch, 220-pound athlete out of Pinnacle High School in Phoenix made that decision long ago. He has dedicated his entire life to becoming both a football and a baseball player.

“My goal has always been to play two sports until something inside me told me I couldn’t play both, since I was probably 3 years old,” Robinson said. “I just want to make little me proud. As long as I’m having fun doing it and nothing inside of me is telling me I can’t do it, I’m going to do it as long as I can.”

On the diamond, Robinson’s raw power against some of the top pitchers in the Area Code Games is a reason teams are interested in drafting him, despite his commitment to USC to play football.

If Robinson were to sign with a baseball team, he’d spend August to January with USC, then report to his club and stay with it until late July. It’s a busy schedule, but his father, Dominic, who played baseball and football at Florida State, hopes Duce can lay a foundation for others.

“We feel like he’s breaking down a barrier for players to follow,” Dominic said. “We really want to speak out for the kid who’s 12, 13, 14 years old and is thinking that he has to choose one. We want to say that you don’t have to choose, but if you do choose, choose joy in both sports. If both sports bring you joy, play two and make the game push you out.”

Robinson, 18, is already practicing football under USC head coach Lincoln Riley. During Riley’s tenure at Oklahoma, he coached current Arizona Cardinals quarterback Kyler Murray, taken by the A’s in the first round of the 2018 MLB Draft and selected No. 1 by Arizona in 2019.

Murray, a Heisman Award winner, was the first to play in the prestigious Under Armour All-American Game in football and baseball. Robinson, who was the fifth, had the chance to meet Murray during a recruiting trip to Oklahoma, and Murray had plenty of advice to offer during their 20-minute conversation.

“He was straight up with us,” Robinson said. “He told us, ‘It’s going to be difficult. There are going to be days wondering whether or not you want to do this, but in the end, just have fun. Make sure you enjoy it.’”

Riley is supportive of Robinson’s desire to pursue both sports professionally.

“He’s doing everything in his power to help me get there,” Robinson said. “It’s huge when your head coach has enough trust in you as a football player to also push for you to play baseball professionally.”

Robinson’s love for baseball grew when he was a young boy in McKinney, Texas. His favorite memories are going to games at Rangers Ballpark in Arlington during the Rangers’ 2010 and ‘11 seasons, when they appeared in back-to-back World Series. His favorite player was infielder Ian Kinsler.

When he wasn’t at Rangers games, he was at the field taking batting practice, catching fly balls and running the bases with his dad.

It was nearly impossible to keep him off the field.

“You can keep a 5-year-old’s attention for 30 minutes. He would be an hour and a half in and be asking for more,” Dominic said. “That was when I went, ‘OK, this is very different.’ I remember telling my wife, ‘I’m not saying that this means he’s gonna be a professional or anything like that, but I’m telling you right now, this kid’s level of obsession with this sport is not normal.’”

Robinson is a busy young man, and while chasing his dream of being a two-sport professional requires a lot of commitment, he credits the people around him who keep him on the right track. One of them is Donnie Ecker, the bench coach for the Rangers, who compares Robinson with Aaron Judge.

“Donnie is like my big brother,” Robinson said. “I can text him at any point and he’ll respond right away. He’s helped me work through a bunch of stuff in my swing and just in life. He’s helped me a lot.”

Baseball and football certainly have their differences, but as Robinson has learned over the years, there is one factor that will have you succeed in both, and he oozes that.

“I feel like athleticism is key in any sport you play,” he said. “It feels like guys who will excel the most in both sports are usually, for the most part, the most athletic guys on the field. Plus, the guys who are passionate about the game who love the game.”



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