Former Major League Baseball pitcher Jim Morris, whose story was the inspiration for the movie “The Rookie,” starring Dennis Quaid, will open the Lindenwood University 2010-11 Speaker Series at 7:00 p.m. on Tuesday, Sept. 14, at the university’s Bezemes Family Theater. Admission is free.
The Bezemes Family Theater is located in Lindenwood’s J. Scheidegger Center for the Arts, at 2300 West Clay St. in St. Charles, just west of First Capitol Drive.
Morris’ presentation, “Never Give Up on a Dream,” will focus on the remarkable story of how he made it to the major leagues at age 35, a time when most players are thinking about retirement. Indeed, his path to the majors is among the most unusual and inspiring stories in the annals of baseball.
A former minor league pitcher whose dreams of making it to the majors were cut short by arm injuries, Morris made a bet with the last place high school team he coached that if they won the championship, he would try out for the majors. They won and, true to his word, he went to a tryout and threw 12 98-mile-per-hour fastballs.
Signed to a minor league contract with the Tampa Bay Devil Rays organization, he worked his way through the minor leagues, making his major league debut in 1999. He returned and pitched at the major league level in 2000 as well. Now a motivational speaker, Morris reminds his audiences that with hard work, belief in oneself and the power of teamwork, anything is possible.
Also appearing in the Lindenwood University 2010-11 Speaker Series:
Drs. David Knotts, Deb Hopkins, and Gail Johnston 7:00 p.m., Tuesday, Oct. 5, 2010 A Glimpse at the Environmental Impact of the Oil Spill in the Gulf of Mexico
Eric Greitens, Humanitarian, Rhodes Scholar and Navy SEAL 7:00 p.m., Tuesday, Nov. 16, 2010 Inspired Leadership in Challenging Times
Dr. Robert George, Legal and Political Expert 7:00 p.m., Thursday, February 10, 2011 Natural Law: God and Human Rights
Dr. James McLurkin, Roboticist and Inventor 10:00 a.m., Wednesday, February 23, 2011 The Future of Robotics and Swarm Robot Application
Dr. John Philip Newell, Poet and Scholar 7:00 p.m., Tuesday, March 22, 2011 The New Ancient Harmony: The Spirit, the Earth, and the Human Soul
Dr. David Walton, Humanitarian and Global Health Expert 7:00 p.m., Tuesday, April 12, 2011 Living a Purpose Driven Life: One Doctor’s Mission to Provide Healthcare to Haiti and other Third World Countries