By George, He Did It!
George Springer was named the MVP of this years World Series. He earned it by, among other things, hitting five home runs - which tied an all time World Series record. George Springer conducted national interviews on live television, something he thought impossible as a child. George Springer had a severe stutter when he was young. He would rarely speak to anyone but his family. He had a speech therapist but still lacked the confidence to speak in front of others. He would often sit in the back of the class hoping the teacher would not call on him. When he went to restaurants he would point to the item he wanted on the menu, rather than tell the waiter what he would like. As a student at UCONN he avoided classes where he had to give an oral presentation. His largest support staff was his family, especially his mom and dad. His mom would tell him to "slow yourself down, think before you talk, slow your train of thought." "I always pause when I find myself rushing too much when I am talking," Spring told the media in July. At this years All Star Game Springer wore a microphone and conducted a live interview during the game while playing left field. Springer knew it was a risk but said after the game that he did it as an example for all the children out there who stutter. "I can't spread a message to kids if I'm not willing to put myself out there," said Springer after the game.
Springer is an advocate for SAY - Stuttering Association For The Young and runs an annual charity bowling tournament to help send children who stutter to a summer camp where they work with therapists and build their confidence. He knows children who stutter can suffer cruel comments and ridicule but he said he never let it affect him while growing up. Springer embraced his stutter and pledged to never shy away and there was no shying away from the microphones at the World Series, especially after he was named the MVP. When Springer was twelve years old he used to hang around a park in New Britain, CT where the Twins AA team played. One day a player asked him if he wanted to play catch. That player was eighteen year major league veteran Tori Hunter.
Springer claimed that game of catch changed his life forever and fueled him with confidence. Springer has made it a point to pick out a young boy or girl at every game he plays and simply make eye contact, say hello or even play catch. He wants that girl or boy to know they are special. Springer has worked his whole life to live out his dream and overcome his stutter. He's an MVP, he's on the cover of Sports Illustrated but more importantly he is a shining beacon for anyone who is looking for a leader or inspiration. "I am who I am," says Springer. By George he did it!