All-Star gets tips from Cathedral standout

Published 12:01 am Monday, July 11, 2011

Michael Kerekes/The Natchez Democrat — Andrew Beesley connects with a pitch thrown by former Cathedral High School pitcher Dylan White.

NATCHEZ — Surgeons shouldn’t operate on family members, and baseball coaches, well, outside help is always good.

Just ask Concordia Dixie Youth 13-year-old All-Star Andrew Beesley.

Beesley was having trouble hitting with a face mask on.

Email newsletter signup

But Beesley, whose father is Cathedral High School baseball Coach Craig Beesley, turned to another friend and mentor this time.

Former Green Wave pitcher Dylan White, who’s home for the summer after his freshman year at LSU, threw batting practice to Beesley Friday afternoon at Chester Willis Field.

“It’s not that hard (hitting with a helmet), it’s just different,” Beesley said. “I’m used to hitting without one, so it’s just something I have to get adjusted to.”

White said he enjoys helping younger players improve in the sport he enjoyed playing.

Michael Kerekes/The Natchez Democrat — Andrew Beesley, left, and Dylan White share a laugh after gathering baseballs hit by Beesley into the outfield during batting practice Friday afternoon at Chester Willis Field.

“I like teaching and helping whenever I can, and still getting to play baseball,” White said.

Beesley plays for the Concordia Dixie Youth 13-year-old All-Stars, a team that will play in the state tournament later this week in Bossier City, La.

“We did pretty well in our last tournament, and finished 2-2,” Beesley said. “We lost to Monroe both times, and the top two teams advanced to state, so that was us and Monroe.”

And Beesley said he’s prepared for the possibility of facing Monroe again.

“I guess there’s a 50-50 chance, depending on how we’re placed in the brackets,” he said.

“We did pretty well against them the second game, they just out hit us by a lot.”

Beesley said it’s not unusual for him to practice baseball outside of his regular practices with the team.

“I practice on my own sometimes if I need it, like when I’m working on something I’m not doing correctly in the game,” Beesley said.

“I didn’t hit as well as I should have in the last tournament.”

And Beesley said he does spend plenty of time honing his craft with his father.

“He’s always telling me the right things to do,” Beesley said. “He’s a good instructor.”

For White, the chance to work with younger players leaves open the possibility of one day coaching in some capacity.

“I would love to,” White said. “I don’t know if I have the credentials, but I’d love to stick around baseball however I can.”

White is a sports administration major at LSU, and he also plays intramural flag football and softball. Even though he still gets to play, he said he misses high school sports.

“I miss both football and baseball,” White said.

“There’s nothing like high school sports and getting to play every day.”