HOUSTON – With the cancellation of Minor League Baseball, thousands of players are in a holding pattern.
One of those players is J.J. Goss, a 2019 Tampa Bay Rays second-round pick out of Cypress Ranch High School. Goss is a hard-throwing right hander, who was poised to move through various levels of the minors before the coronavirus pandemic shut down the season.
“I just make sure I stay in shape and throw the baseball a lot,” said Goss. “I just stick to the throwing program and work out.”
Goss works out at various places, but loves Hunter Pence Baseball Academy, where his records are on the wall, including the hardest pitch off the mound at the academy with 97 miles per hour.
Goss got invited to Rays spring training, but stayed just two weeks before the team and most other teams had to shut it down.
“It moved fast,” he said. “But it’s nothing that I can control. That’s baseball, and that’s life.”
The Rays check in with Goss and other prospects once a week and keep him on a regimented throwing program and workout plan.
“They stay on top of us,” he said.
Goss, a 19-year-old pitcher, is ranked as the 12th best prospect in the Rays system. He pitched 17 innings to a 5.82 ERA in rookie ball in 2019.