Baseball is America’s pastime, and with it, fathers and sons have shared a unique bond with their love of the game for countless generations.
Meet Cavan Biggio, Kacy Clemens and Josh Pettitte.
Their fathers were instrumental in the Houston Astros’ unprecedented postseason runs in 2004 and 2005, and are arguably some of baseball’s biggest names. These local standouts have learned how to play the game from watching their heroes — both at the ballpark and at home.
“I’ve been so blessed throughout my life,” says Josh, one of nine student-athletes to sign a national letter of intent with Baylor on Nov. 14. “It’s humbling and pretty cool to know that I can get advice from (my dad) whenever it’s needed.”
As a junior last season, the Deer Park standout posted a 4-0 record with a 0.89 ERA on 32 strikeouts and six walks in 23.0 innings of work last season.
Josh is a self-described pitcher, not a thrower. He boasts a four-pitch arsenal that features a fastball that sits in the upper 80s, a change in the upper 70s, a curve in the lower 70s, and his favorite outpitch, a cutter that sits in the mid-80s.
“He knows how to pitch,” says Andy, the 17-year MLB veteran. “He knows how to change speeds, he has good command and he’s a strike thrower that can hit the corners. When you’re a strike thrower and you can change speeds, you’re going to be successful.”
Despite having solid command of four pitches, Josh says that his velocity sat in the upper 70s until just recently and that hard work and select ball helped to improve his game.
“I’m not the hardest thrower out there but I feel like I know how to pitch, how to get outs, and how to change up counts with my pitch selection,” he says. “Velocity will help you to a certain point, but sooner or later you’re going to have to make pitches. In close counts you can’t always throw the fastball up and away and hope someone swings at it. You have to make a big pitch.”
If there is one thing we’ve learned from his father, it is that he can handle pressure situations as evident by his illustrious professional career and his record for most postseason wins in MLB history. According to the elder Pettitte, it seems that Josh is currently on the right track for success.
“It’s amazing how little Josh was when I played in Houston and how fast time goes by,” he says. “There is so much more to the game now and I think seeing the way that he handles situations, I think that it’s definitely given him a little bit of an advantage. I think it has almost been instilled in him.”
For Craig Biggio, his career was defined by his grit, hustle, and competitive spirit. His son Cavan is a chip off of the old block and is quickly proving to be a coveted prospect among the 30 MLB clubs. According to Perfect Game, Cavan is the top-ranked third base prospect in the country and he says he owes his success to growing up and watching his dad play.
“He would bring me to the ballpark when he could and we’d sit in the dugout and watch batting practice and just watch the pros throw,” says Cavan. “You learn a lot just watching these big league players and watching how they go about the game and I would just model my game after them.”
For Cavan, a 6-foot-2, 180-pound senior at St. Thomas, he is playing his final prep season under the direction of his father in hopes of clinching a third state championship in four years.
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