When you talk about facing adversity, Curtis Pride is someone familiar with it. Pride is a former MLB player, and he’s deaf.
He did not let his condition stop him from pursuing his dream of playing baseball. Pride spent 11 seasons in the MLB, and he continues to be involved in the game as a head coach at a college in Washington, D.C.
A look at Curtis Pride’s MLB career
Pride was born 95 percent deaf. He grew up in Silver Springs, Maryland, and was a talented athlete. In high school, he excelled in baseball, basketball, and soccer. Pride was a standout in soccer. He played for the United States at the 1985 FIFA U-16 World Championships in China. Pride was also named one of the top 15 youth prospects in the world and was a 1986 Parade Magazine High School All American soccer player.
Pride went to college at the College of William and Mary and was the starting point guard on the basketball team. Though he’s deaf, Pride uses his five percent residual hearing to help him speak, and he is a fluent lip-reader. He had no problem being one of the best in the sports that he played. In the end, baseball was the sport for him. The New York Mets drafted Pride in the 10th round of the 1986 MLB draft. In 1993 the Montreal Expos signed him as a minor league free agent. He made his MLB debut that season in September and played in 10 games hitting .444.
Throughout his career, he never played a full MLB season as he split time playing in the minors. He did play for six different teams during his career. The most games that he played in a season was 95 in 1996 with the Detroit Tigers. He hit .300 that season with 10 home runs. Pride was an outfielder that threw with his left hand and batted with his right. For his career, he hit .250 with 20 home runs and 82 RBIs. Pride enjoyed his baseball career and continued to be involved in the game as a coach.
Curtis Pride becoming the head coach at Gallaudet University
In 2008, Pride was named the new head coach at Gallaudet University in Washington D.C. Gallaudet is a college for deaf or hearing impaired. He’s been the head coach for the past 12 seasons. In 2014, the team finished with a 27-18 record, which set a new record for wins in a season.
At the end of the 2012 season, Pride was named the NEAC Coach of the Year. Pride currently has a record of 145-289-2 as a head coach at Gallaudet. He has had a lot of experience in baseball and is sharing his knowledge of the game to the younger players.
Curtis Pride having an impact in the game and outside the game
Pride has been around the game a baseball for a long time, and that has opened many doors for him. In 2014, he served as a coach on TEAM USA, who won its first World Physically Challenged Tournament in Japan. Pride also had the opportunity to participate in MLB’s All-Star Week in 2016. He was an assistant coach on the World Team in the Future Games, and he participated in the Legends & Celebrity Softball game.
Pride is someone who is well-known throughout baseball, and he has had an impact on many people. In 1996 he received the Tony Conigliaro Award, which is given to an MLB player who best overcomes adversity through the attributes of spirit, determination, and courage. Pride and his wife are actively involved in the Together With Pride foundation, which aids hard-of-hearing children through a hearing aid bank. Pride will continue to impact many lives through baseball and outside of the sport for as long as he can.