Cornell-Bound Right-Hander Also Starred in Basketball

Scholar-athlete-ray-brewerRay Brewer

• School: Sayre School
• Grade: 12th
• Sports: Baseball, basketball
• Academics: Ray has a 4.3 weighted GPA, has taken seven A.P. classes and will attend Cornell University in the fall.
• Parents: Lynn & Patrick

Sayre School’s baseball team marched to a 20-win season this year even though the Spartans played with one arm tied behind their backs.

That arm belonged to 6-foot-7, 260-pound senior right-hander Ray Brewer, who will pitch next year for Cornell.

But this year, he played nothing but first base for the Spartans following off-season Tommy John surgery on his pitching arm.

And what a pitching arm it is. As a junior, his only injury-free season as a Sayre pitcher, he posted a 7-1 record with a 2.10 earned-run average and 101 strikeouts in only 53 innings.

With those stats, a 4.3 weighted GPA, seven A.P. classes and a 30 on his ACT, Ray fielded offers from a bevy of college suitors, including Stanford, Harvard, Duke, Kentucky and Louisville.

That was before surgery, performed by Dr. James Andrews of Alabama, the world-renowned Tommy John surgery expert who has repaired the elbows of countless major league pitchers.

The surgery may have scared off most of the colleges, but Cornell and Ray still believe.

And at his size, who wouldn’t take a chance on this promising pitcher.

Besides, when he’s not pitching, he can hit. As a junior, he batted .468 with eight home runs and 37 runs batted in. Even while rehabbing his arm this season, he batted .458 with six homers.

Still, he might be best remembered at Sayre as a basketball player.

As a four-year starter he scored 993 points with game-highs of 37 and 35, and added 685 rebounds and 24 double-doubles, both school records.

He was Academic All-State in baseball and basketball, graduating Sayre with high honors and a Commonwealth Diploma.

A versatile student, he became interested in medicine because of his own experience.

He first suffered an injured arm as a sophomore and was examined by orthopedic surgeon Kaveh Sajadi. As a senior, Ray job-shadowed with Dr. Sajadi, including in the operating room.

“When I was injured I realized that sports weren’t forever,” Ray said. “I was fascinated by sports medicine and thought this was a great way to stay involved in sports.

“Maybe I could help kids in the same situation as me, allay some of their fears and get them back on the field.”

Ray has always been a helper, said his mother, Lynn.

“He’s works hard, likes a challenge and still takes time to help his grandmother with her shopping every Sunday,” she said.

“He’s always been a leader, a team player, always pumping up the other players.”
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