Free agent deal with Rangers keeps Teschner's dream alive

Brett Teschner was understandably disappointed when he did not hear his name called during the three days of the 2013 Major League Baseball Draft last month.

However, the former South Gwinnett and Columbus State catcher did not give up on his dream of playing professional baseball.

And that determination paid off when Teschner signed a rookie free agent deal with the Texas Rangers last week.

"I'd done a pre draft workout for Texas over in Marietta," Teschner said when reached Tuesday in Surprise, Ariz., prior to his game with the Rangers' affiliate in the Arizona rookie league. "I felt pretty good, and I got some positive feedback. When nothing happened (during the draft), it was one of the most disappointing days of my life.

"I did a tryout club with the (Cincinnati) Reds (late last month), and then the scout from the Rangers who I had the pre draft workout with called me (June 24). I knew I was still on (the Rangers') list. One of their catchers higher up in their organization got hurt, and they had to shift some catchers around and needed a guy to come in."

Teschner jumped at the opportunity after an outstanding senior season at Columbus State in which he hit .333, tied for the team lead with six home runs and was second on the team with 54 RBIs during the Cougars' 30-22 campaign.

And he's off to a good start after going 1-for-3 with a walk and an RBI in his first game with the Surprise Rangers on Sunday.

He can only hope his bat stays as hot as the weather has been since his arrival in Arizona, which is experiencing record heat even for a region used to triple-digit temperatures.

"It's definitely different waking up and seeing that it's going to be over 100 degrees," said Teschner, who led the team with a .354 average and 55 RBIs to go along with seven homers in his first season since transferring to Columbus State from Lipscomb as a junior last year. "It's hot, but it's manageable. the humidity is not nearly what it is back in Atlanta, but you still work up a sweat. I've definitely lost some weight in the last week."

And as grateful as he is at the opportunity given him by the Rangers' organization, Teschner says he will continue to toil to make the most of it.

"At this point, it's just a matter of showing up and continuing to get better," Teschner said. "I'm just trying to stay focused and remain positive. I'm glad I didn't just give up."