What’s going on everybody? My name is Bryan Woodward. I am very pleased to be given this opportunity to contribute to this great site. I will be covering the Gulf Coast League beginning with the 2020 season. I am planning to contribute in other ways as well.
I was born in Lakewood, New Jersey and have been around this game since that very day! When I was first able to walk, I was given the classic Playskool baseball set with the yellow bat and brown glove and soft plush baseballs. I have pictures and home videos of me swinging that thing as early as 14 months! Fast forward now being 31, I STILL have the set! It’s in great shape and will be given to my first born! They just don’t make things like they used too!
As I grew older, my father got me into baseball cards. Since then, I have not only been an avid collector, but also have grown the hobby into a small little side business. You can find me on Instagram @RedBeardSportsCards and also on eBay under that same name! I am big into Bowman products and Topps flagship Rookie Cards.
I played the game my entire life, from the age of 4 up until my age 27 summer when I had to call it quits due to an eye condition called Myopic Degeneration. With my ability to play the game taken away, I decided to move to Florida and opened a baseball facility called The Hack Shack. I also co-founded, directed and coached the Florida Gulf Coast Prospects travel baseball organization with former MLB Pitcher Seth McClung for the first two years I lived here. I have now begun my own travel organization, the Tampa Skyhawks. 2020 will be our inaugural season. The goal of the organization is to make sure all of our players are found a home to continue their careers into college.
This brings me to my involvement in fantasy baseball. I play APBA baseball in a face to face league called the Jersey Central League. It is based in New Jersey/Pennsylvania and has been in existence since 1978. I joined the league when I was just 16. All credit here goes to my dad as well for getting me involved at such a young age. I also play in numerous re-draft fantasy leagues as well as a couple dynasty leagues. I just got into my first 30-team dynasty and am loving every second of it. Finally a place to put all of my knowledge to use!
As you can see, I am connected with this game in so very many ways. I was already a frequent visitor to Gulf Coast League games and always wanted to have a purpose other than for my own enjoyment. This will now give me that purpose and make the days in the Florida heat just that much more worth it! I hope to provide you all with great insight into one of the hidden gems of minor league baseball!
Feel free to reach out to me on Twitter or Instagram @CoachBarbaRoja to discuss anything Gulf Coast League or request some specific coverage!