Jeremy Guthrie (Spain)
Image retrieved from Instagram
On October 24th, 2014, the collective eyes of the sports world were on Jeremy Guthrie. A star pitcher for the Kansas City Royals, the 35-year-old Guthrie took the mound in Game 3 of a World Series that was tied at one game apiece. Under the daunting lights of baseball’s biggest stage, Guthrie stole the show—giving up only four hits and earning a critical road win.
But what many people don’t know is that Guthrie didn’t always plan on making it to that stage. After a frustrating freshman season at BYU, he made the decision to give up baseball and serve a mission. “I left my glove behind, I left my ball behind . . . because that’s really what is asked of a missionary,” he said in a press conference. “And when I came back, I had no expectations.”
Shortly thereafter, Guthrie transferred to Stanford University, where he found success and eventually paved a path to the pros. “I knew that whatever happened for me would be [God’s] will,” he said, “and the more I asked myself questions about why my baseball career turned around . . . the only answer I had was that [it] was just a tremendous blessing.”
Many years later, Guthrie still credits his successes in life to his service. “What I learned as a missionary,” he said, “is the foundation for everything that happens to me.”