Faith in the Oakland Athletics youth movement seems to finally be waning in the team's young players.
One of the team's top prospects is leaving. Grant Desme did not demand a trade or jump ship to the Nippon Professional Baseball league. And he's not even quiting because he can't play anymore. In fact the 23-year-old was just selected the 2009 Arizona Fall League MVP.
Instead after barely reaching the legal age to drink, Desme is retiring from professional baseball to become a priest.
The outfielder selected in the second-round of the draft batted .288 with 31 homers, 89 RBIs and 40 stolen bases in 131 games at Class-A Kane County and Stockton last season before batting .315 with 11 home runs in the fall league.
Desme called A's General Manager Billy Beane to inform him of his decision. Despite the unique reason for his departure, the A's say they are at peace with Desme's retirement.
"We respect Grant's decision and wish him nothing but the best in his future endeavors," Beane said in a statement to MLB.com.
But word of Desme's decision was a surprise around the league where the prospect was seen as a can't miss future big leaguer. A's farm director Keith Lieppman said one scout who had been in the business for 40 years reacted by saying, "Oh my God! Holy smokes!"
The scout's words are proof that Desme's quest to help people remember God was already off to a roaring start.